Cycling caps off season with DII national and ECCC titles
Ralston wins individual omnium at nationals
The MIT Cycling team capped off a great season last weekend in Ogden, UT, where they won the Division II National Championships team omnium. This comes after a stellar performance the weekend before at Penn State where MIT secured the season team omnium victory in the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference (ECCC). The team omnium competition combines points from all men’s and women’s races, so usually requires a team to have depth in both fields.
Two weekends ago, the team made the long drive to Penn State to compete in the ECCC Championships. The race weekend included the exciting/scary road race up “Black Mo’” which is basically a large mountain inside Black Moshannon State Park in Philipsburg, PA. The first race on Saturday was the team time trial (TTT), a quick 9.5-mile race in the state park. The MIT men’s A team edged out home team Penn State by eight seconds to start the weekend on top.
After warming up in the cars and eating some pancakes, the team prepared for the infamous road race, which included 1874 feet of climbing per 21.4 mile lap. The men’s A race involved three laps of the course. Cameron Valier Cogburn G won the race in 3:12:54, beating second place by over two minutes. Yuri Matsumoto G finished sixth in the women’s A field, which completed two laps of the course.
The next day, the team headed over to Penn State’s frat row to race in a technical, 1-kilometer long criterium. Shaena R. Berlin ’13, a Tech meteorologist, finished third in the women’s A race, with teammate Katherine A. Wymbs ’14 close behind in seventh place. Katie F. Maass G and Georgia K. Lagoudas G maintained their early breakaway in the women’s C race and finished in first and fourth, respectively. In an amazing show of teamwork, the MIT racers in the men’s D field propelled teammate Anton Stuart Hunt G into a solo breakaway early on. Hunt ended up winning the race, and teammate Adam Thomas Jones G finished fourth.
It’s nearing the end of the semester and assignments are piling up, but ten MIT riders made the trip out to Ogden, UT for last weekend’s Collegiate Road National Championships. In three days, MIT won multiple races and left with the team omnium award. The MIT women’s team dominated Friday’s TTT, beating second place Whitman College by over three minutes. Despite an unfortunate crash at the end of the criterium on Saturday, Laura Rosalind Ralston G finished third and Christina Marie Birch G finished sixth.
On Sunday, the teams competed in the road race, which involved 101 kilometers for the women and 125 kilometers for the men. After a solo effort on the last climb, Cogburn won his race by more than two minutes. Four MIT women finished in the top 12, with Ralston finishing second to cap off a great season and secure her individual omnium title.