A Note From Ben Raby

Hello ABD'rs

It's late December and I have been doing 4 hour rides in the Chicago
area. My motivation? Being hired as a professional cyclist, my dream.
I have received a contract with Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada for the
'07 season. I see it as an opportunity to continue using my talent,
desire and drive to succeed in this sport. Not simply being satisfied
with a "Pro" status on my cycling license. I feel that my career to
date has prepared me well, giving me the confidence to meet the
challenges with riding on a professional cycling team.

I would like to express gratitude to the ABD club as to my
development as a road cyclist. I started my racing career on the
mountain bike. As a junior, I raced with the Schwinn national team
where I was introduced to Mike Farrell as a coach. I remember
vividly, meeting with him and Mike Ebert one night at his old shop
for a heart-rate zone test. I straddled an awkward bike (a "road
bike") set on a Computrainer, perhaps my first time on a road bike.
Shortly after, Farrell supported me with my first road bike and began
persuading me to ride more and more on it. With his vast experience,
I feel he had an inkling that I would enjoy it. He was right. Ebert
and I soon bonded as new teammates on an early ABD cycling team. He
guided me during my start as a roadie, as well as Farrell, who mainly
focused on me not being a "Fred".

The years have quickly past. I've spent some of the years going back
and forth to Europe and Latin America but continuously racing my bike
and being adventurous at the same time. ABD has grown and Prairie
Path Cycles has expanded, but their fundamentals on developing young
cyclists have not. It's been proved just recently with Reid and Bryce
both signing as well. It's a phenomenal club to be involved with and
for those looking to grow in this sport and who live in the Chicago
area, ABD is the cycling team to start with and begin growth as a

I am off to Boulder, Colorado at the beginning of the year. My wife
and I will treat it as our base for next season. There have been some
small changes with Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada and they wanted to use
Boulder as a center for some of their riders in addition to
California. I may have to put a small plow on the front of my bike
for the first few months, but perhaps just living at altitude will
get me in shape and I won't have to worry about riding in the snow.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,

Ben Raby.


Reid Mumford signs with new US Pro Squad!

Extra! Extra!  

Check out the Decmeber 13th "Latest Cycling News" at Cyclingnews.com to read about the latest ABD'er to ink a pro deal! Local boy and one of our own, Reid Mumford,  signed on with the newly established Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast Pro Cycling Team for 2007.  Congratulations, Reid!


- ABD Reloads for 2007- Announces Elite Team Roster

With last week's announcement of the 8th annual ABD Indoor Time Trial Series (the largest event of it's kind in the U.S.), the members of ABD Cycle Club are hard at work preparing for another successful run in 2007. They have their work cut out for them after a productive 2006 season that included organizing 21 sanctioned events, winning their first USA Cycling National Title with junior rider Jackie Kurth, and the Men's Elite team finishing as the numer one amatuer team in the country in USAC's National Racing Calendar team standings(and even received a 2006 Druber Award to top it all off).

Much of the Elite team's success was due to riders Frank Dierking, Bryce Mead and Reid Mumford - and the club is very excited that all three of these riders have taken the step up to bigger programs for next year. Mead recently signed with the US Continental Jelly Belly squad and Mumford is also finalizing arrangements with an undisclosed Continental squad. In addition, ABD alumni Ben Raby (2002-2004) recently inked a deal with the KodakGallery.Com/Sierra Nevada team and Frank Pipp (2003) moved to Healthnet, the U.S.'s number one Pro squad. The most winning ABD rider to date, sprinter John Puffer, is undecided on his plans for next season. "We have a lot of horsepower to try and replace," says team manager, Mike Ebert," but I'm very happy for all of those guys. ABD is all about developing riders, and every club member can take pride in seeing our riders move to the next level."

With rider development in mind, the team looked for riders with a mix of experience and talent that could be ready to head to the professional ranks within a year or two as well. They've found just such a mix in riders Ryan Baumann (Madison, WI), Josh Carter (Fairview Heights,IL), Jeff Schroetlin (Decatur, IL), Alex Sharon (Wheaton, IL) and Brett Stewart (Munster, IN). Both Carter and Schroetlin have raced the Midwest circuit and numerous NRC races for the past few years, whereas Stewart and Sharon are 21 year old ABD "veterans" who started out with the club as Category 4 riders and moved their way up. 20-yer old Baumann is a very promising young rider who's worked under the guidance of Jelly Belly Pro rider Nick Reistad for the past season.

The ABD Club at large, with over 200 members and growing, is also looking forward to another busy and successful season. Winter training classes in the ABD Cycling Center at Prairie Path Cycles are almost completely booked through March and the club has plans for promoting at least 12 outdoor races once the Midwest weather warms up. Ebert adds, "There are so many dedicated people not only in our club but all over the upper-Midwest. Everyone is working hard to ensure that 2007 is the best schedule we can offer for riders at all levels." More details and the most up-to-date Midwest calendar are available at www.ABDcycling.com.


ABD'ers Play in the Snow at IL Cross Championships

A hearty congratulations to the three ABD riders who participated in Sunday's IL State 'Cross Championship at Montrose Park:

Gina "didn't she just have a baby" Kenny and blonde-bombshell Jonathan Tenney represented the blue and orange in the Women's 4 and Men's 3, respectively, and Tom Knoebl brought home the hardware with a silver medal (3rd Overall) in the Adidas Men's 45+ race!


2007 ABD App/Renewal & Volunteer Sign-Ups

The 2007 ABD Membership Application/Renewal Form is available!  Please take a moment to read through the updated information and apply for or renew your membership for next season.

New for 2007! We're building on our Standard, Silver and Gold membership levels with the option to use your ABD volunteer credits in three different ways: race for FREE, stock up on PowerBar goodies, or redeem credits for ABD Voler Clothing! Some restrictions apply.

We are also currently seeking ABD'ers to help out with several of our annual duties, and the ones right around the corner include:
- Assistant Membership Coordinator: Excel knowledge helpful 
- Indoor Time Trial Pre-Race Volunteer Coordinator
- Indoor TT On-Site Volunteer Coordinator: (to share duties with Pre-Race coordinator)
- ABD Reports Coordinator: will be responsible for posting reports to the ABD site.  No coding or web design experience required, but web savvy-ness is a plus.

Last but not least, please be sure to carefully read through the ABD Rider Release & Code of Conduct on the final page.



Another ABD'er goes Pro!

The KodakGallery 2007 roster posted at Cyclingnews.com this morning includes perpetual ABD'er Ben Raby!  Congrats, Ben!