Brevard, N.C. - This summer, two Brevard College cyclists are striking out overseas to take part in training with some of the top Under 23 cyclists in the world. Tristan Cowie will be riding in Kirtchzarten, Germany from May 7th to the 25th at the USA Cycling development camp, while Marshal Hartley will be leaving on May 19th for the Pyrenees Mountains in Spain to race with a U23 team.
Cowie received his opportunity from USA Cycling, which is offering three different camps this summer for developing riders. Over the three week period, he will be racing every weekend, while training with the instructors during the week. Tristan’s first race is in Switzerland, while his final two will be in Germany.
Hartley’s opportunity came about through family friends who know the team director of team Ibaigane Opel, a U23 team who has agreed to bring Hartley onboard this summer and join the team. Hartley will be in Spain all summer, with his first race coming four days after arriving. For the remaining three months he’ll be there, Hartley will be racing twice a week.
When asked why they decided to go, Tristan said, “Europe houses the world’s best mountain bike racers. I applied for a spot at a development camp hosted by USA Cycling and was accepted. I went over to learn from the very best in my sport.”
Hartley had the following to say about his choice, “It’s the opportunity of a lifetime! All expenses are paid for in the time I am there and it gives me the opportunity to train and race with some of the best U23 cyclists in the world.”
Cowie gives recognition to Coach Thad Walker for pushing him to the camps. “I was a little hesitant because I would be leaving right before finals and I was worried about all the extra work,” Cowie commented, “however, all my professors were super cool about letting me finish the projects early and taking some of the finals on reading day. A really big thanks goes out to my professors, parents, Coach Thad and Wes Dickson for encouraging me and helping me with the whole process.”
Hartley also sends thanks to Coach Walker and to the team. “I was able to train in the mountains of North Carolina, which will make the transition to the brutal terrain of the Pyrenees much easier,” Hartley had to say. “The Brevard College Cycling team has also helped me by showing their support throughout the year.”
Both Cowie and Hartley have created blogs for friends and family to follow as they partake in their overseas endeavors. Cowie’s can be found at tcracing16.blogspot.com, while Hartley’s is located at marshalh.blogspot.com. Both have also agreed to write for the BCTornados website during their time overseas in a joint blog about their experiences, which will be set up this week.