The Paralyzed Veterans of America racing team is gearing up for a busy first weekend of June 2013, when as many as 50 racers will compete across three states.
This will mark the largest single weekend of racers in handcycling and recumbent trikes in the history of the Paralyzed Veterans’ racing team, said Jody Shiflett, adaptive cycling program consultant at Paralyzed Veterans of America.
The first race – the Clocktower Classic in Rome, GA – will take place May 29 through June 2. This is the only timed stage race in the world specifically for handcycling, and will include a 6K hill climb, a criterium, a 58K road race, a 10K time trial and a team relay.
Another race – the Wichita Adaptive Cycling Omnium – will take place May 31 through June 2 in Wichita, KS, Shifflet said. This event will include three races – a time trial, road race and a criterium. The racer with the highest cumulative points from the three races will win prize money to be awarded at an awards dinner on Sunday, June 2.
Finally, the Run for the Dream event in Williamsburg, VA, will include an 8K and a half marathon. As many as 12 members of Paralyzed Veterans’ racing team will participate in this event, Shiflett said.
While Paralyzed Veterans racing team has competed four weekends in a row several times in the past, this will mark the first time there has been multiple races on the same weekend, Shiflett said.
Racers earn points for each race they compete in, and this year will be the first full year that racers will have accumulated points for which they can measure their success for the entire year.
“We’re making a mad push to get everybody who is prepared to definitely compete. I don’t want anyone to have any excuses not to go,” Shiflett said. “You don’t have to be super fast; you just have to be able to accomplish it.”
Meet the Paralyzed Veterans Racing Team
Brittany Ballenstedt is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in several publications, including Government Executive, National Journal, Technology Daily and NextGov.com.