The University of Nevada Cycling Team finished up the mountain-bike racing season as conference champions. The Nevada Cycling Team took home the 2012 Western Collegiate Cycling Conference Mountain Bike Champions title at the conference championships, held Nov. 17 and 18 in Hensley Lake, Calif., near Fresno.
The team's strong performance included four first place finishes in various race divisions. Nevada standouts at the conference competition included Kristy Peck, who won the Women's A division overall, and Casey Coffman, who won the Men's A division overall. Megan Ludwig and Tanner DeGiovanni, both in their first year of racing, won the Women's and Men's B divisions.
"Everyone on the team is really proud that all of our hard work this season paid off," said University of Nevada Cycling Team president Casey Coffman. "This is the first time the team has taken home the title since 1997."
Coffman ended the season ranked fifth nationally in the individual omnium category, earning him the fifth-best "all-mountain" rider ranking in Division 1 cycling. Coffman is majoring in forest management and ecology and graduates in spring 2013.
Coffman's performance previously helped lead the Nevada Cycling Team to its ninth place finish at the 2012 Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships in New Mexico in October. This marked the second consecutive year the team finished the Mountain Bike National Championships in the top 10.
"We can hold our heads high knowing that our racers left everything they had on the trails and we came home for the second year in a row as one of the top 10 cycling teams in the country," team member Chris Dugan said after the October competition. "That shows that our program is really growing and improving."
The Nevada Cycling Team is a club sport, currently with 32 team members, and is recognized as a USA Cycling Team. The team is almost entirely funded by local corporate sponsors including Sierra Nevada Corporation, International Game Technologies, Trial Science Incorporated and Felt Bicycles, and local bike shops including Velo Reno and Great Basin Bicycles.
Throughout the last year, the team focused on helping new cyclists develop their skills in mountain and road biking, as well as further developing the skill level of its experienced members. The Nevada Cycling Team also placed more emphasis on endurance events and women's events throughout the last year.
Now, the mountain-bike conference champions will focus on the spring 2013 road cycling season. They also hope to grow their sponsor support.
"The team is really trying to grow into one of the best programs in the country, and that is going to take more money and more racers," Dugan said. "I think the future of this program is extremely bright and we are looking forward to what the future has to offer."
For more information on the Nevada Cycling Team or to become a sponsor, contact Casey Coffman at firstname.lastname@example.org.