MIT Cycling Team Battles Heat And Humidity To Win National Championship

MIT Cycling Team Battles Heat And Humidity To Win National Championship

The MIT Cycling team had an incredibly successful weekend at the 2019 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships in Augusta, Georgia, winning a national championship in the Team Time Trial and taking home the team Omnium award. The team brought four women, four men, and their coach, Nicole Freedman.

The national championships consists of four events, with an overall 'omnium' for individuals as well as teams. Each individual or team tallies points throughout the weekend, and the individual (and team) that earns the most wins the overall individual (or team) omnium. A description of each event is below:

  • The Team Time Trial - 4 riders from each team work together to complete a 22-mile course as fast as possible.

  • The Individual Time Trial - individual riders complete a 13-mile course as fast as possible.

  • The Road Race - 45 (for women) and 110 (for men) people complete a 60-mile course (4 laps of a 15 mile course) to cross the finish line first.

  • The Criterium - a 70 minute (for women) and 80 minute (for men) short-course event where the riders continuously go around a ~1.5 km course.

After winning the bronze medal for women’s Club Division last year, MIT took the gold medal in this year’s opening Team Time Trial event. The squad finished in 54 minutes, 26 seconds and included three riders from 2018, Emma Edwards, Tori Wuthrich, and Amy Ousterhout, and were joined by newcomer Joanna Millstein. They were awarded the coveted ‘Stars and Stripes’ jersey, which is awarded to those who win a national championship.

Reflecting on the accomplishment, Millstein explained that winning the team time trial was a main goal for the women’s team all year, especially given that they had been just seconds shy of the win in the last few years:

“The team time trial was the women’s team primary goal for the 2019 road nationals. I felt like the four of us were on the same wavelength regarding the event, and I think our communication as a group gave us the extra push to victory. It was so special to win the event with this amazing team, and as we were gasping for air in Augusta I couldn’t help but think about how happy I am to have found such a great team at MIT.”

The team battled intense heat and humidity during the weekend but still came out with one of the most successful shows in the team’s history. Other highlights from the weekend included:

  • An eighth-place finish for the men’s team in the Team Time Trial, comprised of third-year PhD student Berk Ozturk (Aero/Astro), Junior Liam Fenlon (Management), fourth-year PhD student Miles Couchman (Math), and fifth-year PhD student Quinn White (Philosophy)

  • An eighth-place finish for third-year PhD student Berk Ozturk (Aero/Astro) in the Individual Time Trial

  • A third-place finish in the Road Race for fifth year PhD student Emma Edwards (Mech Eng)

  • A fourth and 10th place finish, respectively, for Tori Wutrich (second-year Aero/Astro Masters student) and Joanna Millstein (first-year EAPS PhD student) in the Criterium race.

You can hear more accounts of the race over on the MIT Cycling Team’s blog by clicking here, and see some photos from the weekend by clicking here. full recaps from the 2019 USA Cycling Collegiate Road National Championships below:

Day One
Day Two
Day Three

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