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Jun 28, 2021

Our Team Made a Stir at the Golden Wheel Race

At Bike Works we are proud sponsors of the Valley Preferred Cycling Center in the Lehigh Valley's Trexlertown area. "T-Town" is America's premier velodrome. This past Friday we were proud to sponsor the Golden Wheel Scratch Race Tournament. With so many international professionals unable to be here for racing, our Pro-Am athletes had an opportunity to shine under the Friday Night Lights.

We were so proud to have nine local athletes wearing our jersey's this past Friday: Chris Meacham (Doylestown), Gui Nelessen (Lambertville), and Andy Dudle (Emmaus) represented our men's side, while Jessica Chong (Lehigh Valley), Bethany Matsick (Warrington), and Danielle Shumskas (Pipersville) represented our women's side. That's right, we had three local women representing on the track in Pro-Am competition. Greg Hoffman (Doylestown) represented us in the age 40+ competitions. Keith Hyndman (Phoenixville), Dan Turner (Ottsville) joined Gui and Chris Meacham in a vintage high-wheel scratch race (more on that later).

Andy Dudle (Emmaus) led the way for our men finishing in the money. When I asked Andy about his really successful Friday night he said: "I'm staring to get my bearings on track: when to react, who to watch, and how to employ better tactics. I got 3rd in the Super Sprint which is my best result in an elimination style event!. The Keirin was a new challenge. I was able to find some big gears and won the Minor Finals against some full-time track sprinters. The Golden Wheel Race was the final race of the night and starting order was based off the the Super Sprint, so I was 3rd most handicapped. We started fast and caught the front of the race pretty quickly, from then it was just like a criterium and held on for 4th place." In human language: Andy is our sprinter and he's finding his fast-twitch muscles. Want to know about the different kinds of track races? Click here.

Full results of the Golden Wheel here.

Liberty University/Virginia Tech University student Bethany Matsick (Warrington) grabbed our attention when we saw her winning collegiate races in the south the past two years. Bethany went to college in the south as a competitive swimmer but found a home with a strong collegiate team and coach in Lynchburg. She dabbled in track last summer during the limited competition at T-Town during the SARS CoV-2 pandemic, but gained a lot of experience at the Giordana Velodrome in Rock Hill, SC in 2021. Suffice to say that the women's field didn't see her coming when she took off on a solo bid to win the Women's Point Race Final (8 KM, 24 laps) lapping the field. We're so excited any time Bethany represents Bucks County when she's north of the Mason-Dixon line.

Greg Hoffman (Doylestown) continues to inspire us. I'm not sure we have any athlete on our roster who has been more active on the road, gravel, mountain, or track in 2021 than Greg. Friday night Greg competed in several 40+ races representing us in the men's master's division. On Friday I had trouble getting my stiff hip out of the car at T-Town and Greg was taking on summer heat in multiple races to represent Central Bucks County at America's premier track racing venue. Chapeau, Greg.

In the 1870's-1880's James Starley's high-wheel bicycle dominated bicycle track racing in Europe and America. Before the advent of the pneumatic tire and bicycle chain drive train, direct-drive, hard rubber tire, "boneshakers" were the fastest form of transportation known to man. We were happy to re-visit vintage cycling history by staging the 2nd ever high wheel track race in North America since the 1890's (oh, yeah.. we did the first). Our elite racers Gui Nelessen (Lambertville), Chris Meacham (Doylestown) faced off against Bike Work partner (and veteran high wheel racer) Dan Turner and shop friend, Keith Hyndman (Phoenixville). Chris Meacham took the terrifying race at the line, just ahead of Gui. Stay tuned as we take on the Penny Hour at T-Town later this year.

So many great photos of our racers come to us courtesy of Doylestown/Buckingham photographer Mike Maney and he does all kinds of great work, check him out here. You can see all of his photos from the 2021 Golden Wheel here.

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