Silber Pro Cycling is a Quebec-based UCI Continental team that races on the UCI Americas Tour. The team is owned by À Bloc Sports Management, whose President is Scott McFarlane. The team has signed two-year agreements with Silber Investments, Mandevco Properties and Toguri Training Systems.
Travis McCabe finished an outstanding 9th at Crusher in the Tushar, one of the premier gravel races in North America. His result follows up on teammate Noah Granigan’s 9th at Dirty Kanza and Noah Simms’ 13th at Paris to Ancaster. Our team’s success on our Van Dessel Full Tilt Boogie bikes is great, but not the point. We just want to be part of the action. More on this later but you get the picture (from L-R: Simms, Granigan, McCabe and our mechanic/racer Richard Knutson).
Serghei Tvetcov finished an impressive 5th overall while racing for the Romanian Federation at the Sibiu Cycling Tour, a UCI 2.1 stage race that is part of the Europe Tour.
The tour highlights the Romanian region of Sibiu and features a gorgeous stage 2 that finishes at Bâlea Lac. On this, the most decisive of the 4-stage race, Serghei finished 4th and moved into 5th overall. From this point on it was a matter of managing splits and time bonuses. After stage 3 to Pāltinis, Serghei had moved up to 4th and 2 sec off the podium. On the final stage, however, he was isolated and it was Serghei’s experience and race craft that allowed him to ensure he secured 5th overall. He also won the Red jersey as the top Romanian.
Thanks to the Romanian Federation for providing race days for one of our riders, enabling Serghei to compete at the European Games and National Championships. As the North American race calendar struggles to re-establish itself, extra race days in Europe and Asia are increasingly valuable.
The day after teammate Serghei Tvetcov won the Chrono Kristin Armstrong, Nickolas Zukowsky finished 2nd at the Boise Twilight Crit and ensured the team’s trip to Idaho was a success.
Zuke continued his consistent run of wins and podiums this year against a loaded field including winner Justin Williams (Legion of LA) and top sprinters from Rally, Arapahoe and Aevolo who were all vying for the win at one of the premier stops on the USA Crits series calendar. What’s most impressive about Zuke’s success this year is that it has transpired across multiple terrains, in the bloating heat of Boise, in the rain of Saguenay, at altitude at Gila and in both single-day events and stage races. This versatility has made him one of the best U23 prospects racing in North America. He will be hoping to join Team Canada in Europe later this summer, though final rosters have not been announced yet.
Last Friday Serghei Tvetcov confirmed his form by taking the team’s 31st win of the season at the Chrono Kristin Armstrong. The 24km ITT starts at Glenns Ferry then travels out-and-back along the Oregon Trail, where historically horse and oxen teams hauled goods to and from the so-called “new frontier” (I’m sure Shoshone traders had alternative names for the territory).
Regardless, it was Serghei who was hauling it to the turn around point, where he was tied with Rally’s Brendan McNulty for the lead. On the way back, Serghei smoked the primarily downhill return to the finish, taking 6 sec from his rival in the 40 degree heat. Yeah it was hot. Racers could smell the wooden electrical poles broiling under the grill-like sky.
At the end of the hotly contested day, Serghei celebrated winning his 4th ITT of the season by striding onto the top step in his new Romanian ITT Champ skinsuit by Biemme. His attention now turns to preparing for the Tour of Utah, which begins on August 12th.
We dove into BC Superweek and took what we could. Travis grabbed the win and a bottle of champagne at Ladner. Emile took an awesome 2nd and a fist of cash at Gastown. We botched the tricky finish of the UCI Delta road race but Travis salvaged 4th and left with UCI points in his pocket. A couple other podiums, some bouquets here and there, then we left at dawn this morning with crews heading to Boise and Crusher. Eibhir photography provided surveillance.
“If opportunity knocks and he’s not home; opportunity waits…”
–The Most Interesting Man in the World commercial for Dos Equis Beer
We’re headed to the 2019 Tour of Utah (August 12-18) and here’s the reason why: Floyd Landis is the most interesting man in the cycling world.
It’s an over-the-top claim but shouldn’t be overlooked because it has to do with the big picture of North American cycling as opposed to narrowly focusing on the struggle of one of the best teams in the Americas to get into Utah. I’m insisting we talk about what Floyd is offering cycling these days, not about efforts to exclude him.
Floyd’s decision to open a café in his childhood home of Lancaster County was interesting, not just because coffee sells, or that coffee and cycling have a long illustrious history. Coffee houses were integral to the development of the public sphere in the 18th century. Cafés were key public places where people could meet, read newspapers and talk about their families, the community, the economy, politics and so forth. Floyd’s of Lancaster Café is meant to be a descendant of that tradition as its announcement coincided with the commitment that Floyd’s of Leadville would purchase hemp for their CBD line from struggling farmers in the area. Home, community, cycling and Floyd’s business integrated within a place for people to hang out, grab a coffee and talk about what’s going on in their lives. Strikes me that places for open discussion are important these days, and Floyd’s café brings cycling and cyclists to the table. He’s growing the sport.
If the Floyd’s of Lancaster Café integrates cycling with local needs, that too is consistent with the support Floyd’s of Leadville gives to gravel and adventure racing–what I often refer to as a North American brand of participatory cycling dedicated to local businesses, farm-to-table folks, local breweries, distilleries, vineyards… all wrapped up in a festival come-meet-the-community and have a good time experience. Floyd’s of Leadville has sponsored and made agreements with most of the major gravel and adventure races in the US. In the age of electric bikes, FoL have taken the next step and bridged bikes with motosports via sponsorship of Tyler O’Hara. Yes, they want to expand the audience of their CBD products but is anyone else effectively making these connections?
Speaking of connections, Floyd’s of Leadville is also at the forefront of bringing sponsorship from the wellness industry into the sport of cycling, and they’re doing this at a time when the North American bike industry needs support and new sectors for sponsorship. This is where our team fits in to Floyd’s activities… sort of. Floyd was not deterred when Canadian sports regulations forbid the direct advertising of CBD products. The team was simply named Floyd’s Pro Cycling instead of Floyd’s of Leadville. Floyd’s sponsorship was personal and it came with no strings attached. In fact he has remained at arms length while offering help with design, marketing, logistics and even accommodations at Dirty Kanza. He has not only given back to the sport by supporting Floyd’s Cycling, but he has also made opportunities in cycling more visible to others in the wellness industry. Opportunity is knocking while we wait for sport regulators to catch up with regulations that take into account the differences between hemp and marijuana products.
Of course Floyd’s image and Floyd’s of Leadville have benefitted from sponsoring our team. But I’m downplaying that side of the story here because Floyd and Floyd’s of Leadville have not exploited Floyd’s sponsorship of the team to the full extent possible… in fact they’ve downplayed it. Like the Café, our team is a place for young riders to hang out and do their thing. As ESPN’s Bonnie Ford wrote of Floyd’s sponsorship,
Call it paying things forward. Call it paid advertising. Call it a thumb in the eye of those who would prefer he stay out of cycling. Call it all of the above. There’s no blood test for sincerity, but Landis says he hopes people will recognize his motivation to help. Younger riders, he says, remind him of a time when riding his bike was an uncomplicated endeavor.
There’s no blood test for sincerity, but we’re in the Tour of Utah because the most interesting person in North American cycling trusts Gord Fraser and has sponsored our team. He also trusts his friend Roger Worthington, who was a central figure in the establishment of the Dana Point GP and whose company Worthy Brewing is a presenting sponsor of our team. Floyd agreeing to let the team race the Tour of Utah as Worthy Pro Cycling allows us to showcase a company that recently helped save one of the most popular races on the US calendar: the Cascades Cycling Classic. Don’t forget that the beloved race in beautiful Bend, OR operates in conjunction with the CCC Youth Foundation whose mission is to support cycling programs for children and youths that encourage community involvement. In fact the Worthy Brewing restaurant serves as a community meeting place for those engaging with youth and “earth-friendly non-profits.”
So here’s a way to sum things up: Floyd and his companies are supporting cycling financially; helping to raise the profile of gravel and a North American brand of the sport that has untapped crossovers with motosports; he’s opening the door for sponsorship from the wellness industry; and now he’s stepped aside for a brewing company that shares his commitment to integrating cycling with local communities. So yeah, we’ll wear Worthy Brewing on our chests at the Tour of Utah. What a great opportunity granted to so many of us.
After winning 3 titles, a silver and two bronze at 3 different National Championships, Floyd’s will continue to run split squads in Romania, the US and Canada.
After winning the Romanian TT Championships, Serghei Tvetcov is racing for the Romanian National team at the Sibiu Cycling Tour (July 3-7; UCI 2.1). After the prologue and Stage 1, Serghei is 2:03 off the pace but 25 sec out of 2nd. Stay tuned…
Last but not least, a squad led by recently crowned US Crit Champ, Travis McCabe, will head to BC Superweek. Key targets will be the UCI race in Delta and the evening Gastown GP but every crit is an opportunity. Ok ok: winning Gastown would be sweet…
Three different racing scenes and three paragraphs ending with dot dot dot. Hey, this post is about “what’s next” so those dots/ellipses make sense. Three scenes of racing–Sibiu, BC and Boise–will unfold shortly. Then we’ll connect the dots and write you a line.
Floyd’s Pro Cycling had a successful run at “National Champs Weekend”, winning titles in Europe, the US and Canada.
Serghei Tvetcov started the weekend with a bang. This year Serghei’s won the TT at the Tour of the Gila and the Tour de Beauce, where he finished 5th overall. On Friday he continued his winning streak in time trials with a dominant performance at the Romanian TT Championships in Sadu, averaging over 50km/h over the 35km course.
A few hours later, Nick Zukowsky was on course in Saint-Prosper, QC on his way to a 3rd place finish in the U23 Canadian TT Championships. It would not be the last time he stepped onto the podium at the National Championships, but the day was not done for Floyd’s.
Later Friday night, fans lined the streets of downtown Knoxville, TN for a thrilling evening of racing at the US Pro Crit Championships. Tens of thousands watched online. Let’s cut to the chase: Travis McCabe is the 2019 US Pro Crit Champion. And here’s how he did it, with huge help from Noah Granigan:
2019 Pro Crit National Championships - YouTube
What made Travis’ win audacious was the fact he and Noah were racing against entire teams. It was a recurring issue for our split squads throughout the weekend during the RR. Serghei was riding solo in Romania but nonetheless managed a 10th place finish. In the US, Travis, Noah and Keegan were active most of the race and made an impact but they were ultimately outgunned.
Back in Canada, Alec Cowan and Nick Zukowsky made the first major split, with Noah Simms and Robin Plamondon joining when two groups merged. Unfortunately only Nick made final selection. In the run-up to the finish Nick’s group caught James Piccoli, who had been solo for over 90km. Nick was not able, however, to cover the multiple attacks by Rally’s two riders in the group–eventual winner Adam de Vos and runner-up, teammate Nigel Ellsay. Nick finished a hard fought third and in doing so, won our third title of the weekend: a well-deserved U23 Canadian Road Championship.
The Canadian Crit Champs were held the following afternoon, on Canada Day. 19 year old Robin Plamondon and Alec Cowan were active and off the front all day and made the final selection as the heat and challenging course cracked the field. A late attack by Ryan Roth (X-Speed) stuck with Robin giving chase but finishing second. Alec sprinted for fourth, nudged off the podium by Pier-André Côté (Rally).
At the conclusion of National Championships Weekend, we had 3 titles, a silver and a bronze. We’ll stuff those into our suitcases, as we head to BC Superweek, the Boise TT and Twilight Crit plus some more gravel racing at Crusher in the Tushar. Next!
Zuke is hoping to start the championships with a breakout result at the 34km Time Trial on Friday June 28. For the last 2 years he has finished 2nd amongst the U23s but this year he is hoping to scuff the top step with his cleats. After his recent performances, he’ll certainly be marked in the 186km road race on Sunday June 30, which will traverse the familiar Stage 1 course of the Tour de Beauce from 2018. He will then try to repeat as National Criterium Champion on Monday July 1 on the lumpy course around Usine Pro Cycle.
Zuke will be joined by Floyd’s Cycling stalwarts, Emile Jean and Alec Cowan. Jean is looking to repeat his 2017 win on Stage 1 at the Tour de Beauce–which used the same course scheduled for this year’s national championships. He was recently 3rd on Stage 3 at Saguenay and hoping to carry form from Saguenay and Beauce into the weekend. Alec Cowan has had a bounce back year, winning stages at Joe Martin and Cascade. The uphill drag race to the finish of both the road race and crit suits an in-form Cowan.
It’s easy to forget, but 21-year-old Zuke is still a U23 rider. In fact he’s won the Young Rider’s competition in the last 3 UCI stage races he has entered: Gila, Saguenay and Beauce. He’s part of a development program that Gord and I have been running for the past 6 years. As Zuke did in his first year, our newest editions to the program–Noah Simms, Robin Plamondon and Carson Miles–have been developing basic racing skills in supporting roles.
Last year, Simms finished 2nd amongst U23s (11th overall) in the RR. He’s hoping to make the splits and be opportunistic again this year. Plamondon recently won the important Granby TT and will be hoping for a good result amongst the U23s this year. He just completed both Saguenay and Beauce riding in support of Zukowsky. That’s a lot of hard racing for a first year elite so we’ll see how the RR and Crit go for one of Canada’s most promising young riders. After an excellent spring, Miles is coming off an injury which forced him to miss the Beauce. He was 4th last year in the Junior TT and is hoping for a break out time trial on Friday. A member of Canada’s Junior National team at last year’s World Championships, he’s looking to make an impact on this year’s road race amongst the U23s.
We’ll be providing updates on our Facebook and Twitter accounts throughout the long weekend. Action starts with the TT on Friday.
<p class=”intro”>Travis McCabe, Keegan Swirbul and Noah Granigan will provide Floyd’s Sports Director, Gord Fraser, with 3 viable options throughout the weekend at the US Pro National Championships in Knoxville, Tennessee.</p>
Attention then shifts to the 15 lap, 191 km road race whose main feature, the Sherrod Street climb, has been the site of multiple attacks and consistent attrition in the past. The addition of a punchy climb each lap before the start/finish might serve the versatile McCabe well. Granigan has proven he has the engine for a course like this, finishing 10th on the fast-paced punchy Winston Salem course while also finishing a notable 9th at Dirty Kanza. Our climber, Keegan Swirbul, is rounding into form. He finished 2nd overall at Langkawi, 6th at Gila and was 2nd on the Mont Mégantic stage, 3rd on the final stage plus 4th overall this past week at the Tour de Beauce. This young talent will want to get up the road and let the chips fall in Knoxville.
The Crit begins this Friday (June 28) at 7:30 pm. We will post updates or live streaming links on our Facebook and Twitter accounts.