This whole thing started a couple years ago on the way home from Joe Martin Stage Race. That race was the spark that lit an inextinguishable fire to grow a sustainable elite team here in Kansas. Fast-forward hundreds of conversations and emails, a few lessons in business, and two years time, and here we are. The goal these past couple years has been to create something unique that people want to be a part of and support. We believe the Olathe Subaru Cycling team is the start of something big.
Being members of GP Velotek, we’ve had a great support system, and decided to build on the foundation that Jim Whittaker and his crew have created.
Velotek has always focused on junior development, and that was the groundwork that led to multiple national championship appearances by Benn Stover and Garrick Valverde. The development aspect of Velotek is certainly something we have strived to build on, and are still committed to grow. Creating an elite team that will mentor junior riders and be role models to the next generation was the first step in creating the unique framework for our team.
Secondly, we wanted to bridge the gap between racer and recreational cyclist. We partnered with Steve Ashley of Lawrence Bicycle Club to join our shared focus of developing riders that are new to the sport as well as mentoring juniors. LBC hosts some of the best group rides in Lawrence, and we wanted to be a part of that to help keep these rides fun and enjoyable for riders of all ability levels. This is one of many steps towards our long term goal of creating tighter knit cycling community in the Kansas City, Lawrence, and Olathe regions.
As many of you are aware, Bill George’s Olathe Subaru has been critical to our success in building this team. We approached them last year with a clear vision in mind, and they believed in us and have agreed to support us again next year as the title sponsor of our team. We are excited to represent a company that is geared towards the active, on-the-go lifestyle that outdoor sportsmen and cyclist’s tend to live.
In addition to Olathe Subaru and Lawrence Bike Club, we are happy to continue our partnerships with Trek Bicycle Store of Kansas City and Topeka Ear Nose and Throat, and we welcome Louis Garneau and Chamois Butt’r aboard for 2015. We also want to thank two true artists: David Tsai of Wirken Photography and Chris Ralston of Callahan Creek. David is responsible for the pictures you see on our website and Facebook Page, and Chris has designed a first class kit for us for next year.
Building on the successes and lessons from last year, we are coming into 2015 highly motivated. Returning this year are Garrick Valverde, Benn Stover, Michael Allison, Ian Silovsky, and Austin Elser. We’re excited to welcome Scott Williamson and Kent Woermann to the team. Our goal for this upcoming season is to win races, be advocates for the sport, and focus further on community outreach events. Thank you all so much for the continued support of our team, welcome to our website, and we look forward to seeing you all out on the road!
Also… we kicked off our first team camp of the year yesterday. We’ll share some pics and stories as the week goes on. #ridesubaru