Dahlonega, Ga. - The Tornados cycling team opened the season this past weekend at North Georgia College and State and both the men’s and women’s teams fought both the other teams at the meet and the weather in their first action of the 2009 spring season.
Heavy rain and cold weather greeted the field on Saturday as the teams battled in a time trial. However, in spite of the conditions, the men’s A team, consisting of Matt St. Marie, Tristan Cowie, Marshal Hartley, and Matt Wells finished the 14-mile race third overall, while the women’s team blew away the field in winning their portion of the event.
On Sunday, the weather continued to wreak havoc on the field snow and hail fell throughout the day, forcing many riders to abandon the course. Of the more than 30 starters in the men’s A race, only five were able to finish. Hartley was the last Tornado among the remaining ones in the race and was in the lead break when a mechanical issue forced him to retire.
In the men’s C race, only James Chaput was able to finish for Brevard as similar numbers abandoned due to the inclement weather.
On the women’s side of the draw, Julia Tellman was forced out of the women’s A race due to mechanical issues. Jami Perry pulled out the win in her first collegiate cycling race as she was the lone rider able to battle the elements and the course to finish.
The Brevard cycling team will head back to the road on Saturday and Sunday, March 7th and 8th as they travel to Clemson, S.C.