After an extremely successful Amgen Tour of California, Rally Cycling heads into the USA Cycling Professional Road Race and Time Trial National Championships, May 27 – 28, looking to take home multiple stars and stripes jerseys. In the team’s most successful Tour of California to date, the team won King of the Mountains jersey, finished second in two stages, placed a rider in the day’s breakaway in all seven road stages and Rob Britton finished 11th overall. In addition to targeting national titles in Winston-Salem, the team also welcomes one of the brightest talents in North America, Sepp Kuss to Rally Cycling. The talented rider will be in Rally Cycling orange through 2017.
"I’m really excited to join Rally Cycling. It is one of the longest running and most successful teams in North America,” said Kuss. “Its success is a testament to the strength of the riders on the team and the dedication and professionalism of the staff and organization. It’s an honor to be part of such a renowned team.”
At 21, this is Kuss’s first year racing on the road full-time having come from a mountain bike background. While still learning the dynamics of road racing, the 3-time collegiate mountain bike national champion has already racked up an impressive resume including stage two of the Redlands Bicycle Classic and 14th overall at the Tour of the Gila. Kuss joins from the Gateway Harley Davidson/ Trek U25 Cycling Team and will make his debut for Rally Cycling in Saturday’s road race.
“We are excited to bring Sepp Kuss into our program, said Performance Manager Jonas Carney. “He’s a very talented young climber with a bright future in the sport. As a Durango native and a resident of Boulder, we have many mutual friends and he has been well prepared for the professional ranks by the great development program within the Gateway Harley Davidson program.”
The USA Cycling Professional Road Race and Time Trial National Championships kick off with the time trial on Friday. Tom Zirbel headlines the Rally Cycling roster and is looking to capture the title one last time. In his final season in the professional peloton, the 2013 National Time Trial Champion is motivated to go out on top. Zirbel won the Tyrone Time Trial earlier this month at the Tour of the Gila before skipping the Amgen Tour of California to prepare specifically for nationals. Also, competing in the time trial for Rally Cycling will be Amgen Tour of California King of the Mountains Evan Huffman and all-around strongman Danny Pate.
In the women’s time trial, Rally Cycling will look to garner a good result with 2015 Junior World Championship silver medalist Emma White. It will be the first Individual Elite Time Trial National Championships for White who was part of Rally Cycling’s National Team Time Trial winning squad back in April. Also representing Rally Cycling in the time trial will be jack-of-all trades Jessica Prinner. A noted sprinter, Prinner showed her climbing ability earlier this season by winning the Fort McCellan Road Race. Her strength and all-around speed should see her in with a chance of a podium.
After an incredible week of aggressive racing in California, Rally Cycling looks to put a rider in the stars and stripes jersey of National Pro Road Champion. Huffman is the team’s designated leader, and will rely on the strength and experience of veterans Pate and Jesse Anthony. If the race comes to sprint finish, Bjorn Selander, recent Tour of Battenkill winner Curtis White, and Tom Soladay are set to lead out fast men Shane Kline, Eric Young or National Criterium Champion Brad Huff. Emerson Oronte who rode brilliantly in the final stage of the Amgen Tour of California will be the team’s wild card and hunt for the day’s breakaway.
The women will be led by the aggressive duo of Prinner and Heather Fischer. Fischer won a stage and points competition at the Tour of the Gila earlier this month and finished seventh in stage 3 of the Amgen Tour of California – a day after hitting the ground in the team time trial. Elle Anderson, second at Criterium National Championships, sprinter Erica Allar, Hannah Ross and White make up the rest of the Rally Cycling roster.
"Nationals will be a good test that will suit our roster well,” said team director Zach Bell. “It's the kind of course that requires a team to have a few options. We have podium performances from five of the six women on the roster in Pro Road Tour events. That is a lot of options.”
Men’s Professional Road Race Championships Roster
Men’s Professional Time Trial Championships Roster
Women’s Professional Road Race Championships Roster
Women’s Professional Time Trial Championships Roster