Road National Championships kick off in Chattanooga
by Kristen Gowdy
Freddie de los Santos finishes his time trials race at the USA Cycling Para-cycling Road National Championships. (Photo: Casey Gibson)
CHATTANOOGA, TENNESSEE – Qualification for the 2022 UCI Para-cycling Road World Championships is underway for Team USA, as the USA Cycling Para-Cycling Road National Championships, presented by Toyota, began Saturday in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
The two-day nationals competition is serving as the team selection event for road world championships and the final road world cup of the season, both of which will take place in August in Quebec, Canada.
Coming off a perfect four-for-four sweep of the world cups in which she has competed this season, Samantha Bosco (Claremont, California) was crowned national champion in the women’s C4 time trial as she looks to cement her spot on the world championships roster. A two-time Paralympic medalist, Bosco has made a triumphant return from an injury that kept her out of the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 and is currently leading the world cup standings in her classification. Her time of 28:51.86 today beat out silver medalist Christina Truesdale (Hillsboro, Oregon).
Also leading the world cup standings in the men’s C4 classification, John Terrell (Converse, Texas) continues his campaign for his first world championships berth with a win in the MC4 time trial. Terrell has been a breakout star in 2022, having earned five podiums in a two-month European racing stint this spring.
In today’s race, Terrell edged fellow MC4 athletes CJ Howard (Sacramento, California) and Francis Reilly (Cocoa, Florida), who took silver and bronze, respectively, with a time of 39:44.20.
Paralympic silver medalist Aaron Keith (Woodinville, Washington) earned the victory in the men’s C1 time trial. The 2019 World Time Trial gold medalist, Keith is looking to defend his title with a spot on the 2022 team. Todd Key (Scottsdale, Arizona) came in second behind Keith.
The defending track time trial world champion, Clara Brown (Falmouth, Maine) took the first step toward a road world championship title with a win in the women’s C3 time trial. A 2020 Paralympian, Brown paced the WC4 class with a 29:27.04 time to edge silver medalist Jamie Whitmore (Somerset, California) by less than a minute.
Coming out of retirement for a shot at more para-cycling hardware, eight-time Paralympic medalist Allison Jones (Colorado Springs, Colorado) had her comeback to the sport put on hold after missing the first two world cups of the season due to a medical reason. She came back strong today with a win in the women’s C2 time trial in 35:02.07 as she looks to qualify for her first international competition in more than four years.
In the handcycle categories, 17-time Paralympic medalist Oksana Masters (Louisville, Kentucky) made her return to her cycle after a historic Paralympic Games Beijing 2022, where she competed in Para Nordic Skiing. Masters, now the most decorated U.S. Winter Paralympian in history, won the women’s H5 time trial race in 34:15.54. It is the first time Masters has competed in a major cycling competition since she won double gold in Tokyo last summer.
National team members Travis Gaertner (Burien, Washington) and Owen Daniels (Fontana, California) scored wins in the men’s H4 and H3 classes, respectively. Gaertner, a two-time Paralympic champion in wheelchair basketball, is also the 2019 world championships bronze medalist in the road race. Gaertner, Zachary Stinson (Chambersburg, Pennsylvania) and Matt Tingley (Rochester Hills, Minnesota) made up the men’s H4 podium, while Daniels, Kevin Hillery (Alexandria, Virginia) and Brandon Lyons (Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania) were atop the MH3 standings.
In the women’s H3 class, three-time Paralympic medalist Alicia Dana (Putney, Vermont) began her quest for three national titles this weekend by picking up a win. Dana, who edged silver and bronze medalists Jenna Rollman (Rancho Cucamonga, California) and Gabrielle Platt (Tulsa, Oklahoma) for the time trial victory, is also set to compete in the road race Sunday. Dana and Gaertner were the only two athletes to earn two national titles on day one, as they teamed with Lyons for a win in the handcycle relay to conclude the day's racing.
Paralympic medalist Freddie de los Santos (Hopewell Junction, New York) won the men’s H5 time trial in a competitive class that also included national team member David Berling (Avondale, Arizona), who took silver, and Jose Perez (Marion, Texas), who raced to bronze.
Chester Triplett (Mooresville, North Carolina), along with pilot Joey Bacala (Cedar Crest, New Mexico), defended his men’s tandem class national championship title as he looks to qualify for world championships. Dennis Connors (Portland, Oregon), another up-and-coming star won the men’s T2 time trial as he looks for his second worlds berth, while Jill Walsh (Syracuse, New York) took home the women’s T2 title.
Other national champions crowned today include Delmon Dunston (Moreno Valley, California), who won the men’s H2 race, women’s H4 champion Ryen Reed (Riverside, California), women’s H2 winner Katie Brim (Lowell, Michigan) and Elizabeth Mis (Medina, Ohio), the women’s C5 winner. Barry Wilcox (Gilbert, Arizona) was the men’s H1 champion, while Kyle Pitman (Lafayette, Colorado) took home the men’s C5 title. National team member Noah Middlestaedt (St. Cloud, Minnesota) won the men’s C3 time trial.
For full results from the first day of national championship competition, click here.
National championships competition concludes Sunday with road races in Chattanooga. The athletes who will represent Team USA at world championships are expected to be announced next week. Follow U.S. Paralympics Cycling on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for coverage from the races.
For media requests and photo inquiries, please contact Kristen Gowdy at Kristen.Gowdy@usopc.org.