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MIT Cycling Dominates Army Race, Team Takes Fifth Place

By Jason Sears

The women’s and men’s teams of MIT Cycling made a strong showing at the Spring Classic races hosted by the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., this past weekend. The competition consisted of a road race on Saturday followed by a criterium and a team time trial on Sunday. The event was part of the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference series.

Caitlin Bever G held off the B-category women in the group sprint Saturday to take first place in the road race. Bever, the only MIT woman in the race, was far outnumbered by rival teams Dartmouth and the University of New Hampshire. She single-handedly punished her competitors on the hilly 27-mile course to win in 1:33:25. The win put Bever in first place in Division II women’s B for the season.

Stanley M. Jurga G proved to be the toughest cyclist in the men’s road race by chasing down every attack in the competitive Men’s B field. Jurga escaped for his own 10-mile attempt in the third of four 14-mile laps before being caught in the last few miles by the peloton, finishing 17th at the end of the day.

On Sunday, Ariel M. Herrmann G came back from a race-ending crash the day before with an excellent showing in the Men’s C criterium. Herrmann sat in within the 60-strong pack for most of the race, making a short appearance at the front to take fourth place in a prime sprint. Herrmann demonstrated his superior tactical and handling ability with an 8th-place finish despite the injuries he had sustained the previous day.

Exhausted and sunburned, the MIT men lined up once more Sunday afternoon to contest the Men’s A team time trial on a rolling 13-mile course. The team, consisting of Jurga, Herrmann, Chip Vaughn, and Jason A. Sears G, put in an impressive performance in an exceptionally strong field. With three of four riders in their first season of competition, MIT’s team finished in 6th place, only 2.5 seconds behind a Penn State squad featuring the under-23 national road race and national track cycling champions.

Also putting in solid performances this weekend were D-category team members Isaac J. Dancy G (8th in the criterium), Benny Yam (15th in the criterium), and Michael Rosenblatt (27th in the road race). MIT placed 5th in Division II in the weekend’s points tally. The team heads to the Eastern Conference championships April 26th and 27th at the University of New Hampshire.