BRISTOL, Tenn. – The King University cycling team had breakout mountain bike and cyclocross seasons last year, before topping the year off with an individual national champion during the road season. Going into his second season at the helm, head coach Alan Sparks has high expectations for his squad again this fall as they embark on the 2015 mountain bike season.
In their first time competing in the mountain bike portion of the schedule, King took home a fourth place finish at the USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships behind a combined five podium performances from Cory Rimmer and Kaysee Armstrong. The roll continued into the winter when the duo led the Tornado to a program-best third place finish at the USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships. In the spring, Jennifer Caicedo added the cherry on top of what was a successful season by winning King's first cycling national championship, leading the road race at the USA Cycling Road National Championships from start to finish.
Both Rimmer and Armstrong look to lead the Tornado in the mountain bike season again along with Kyle Ellis and Emily Cox as category A riders. Sparks also has good depth in both category B and C leaving the expectations high for the mountain bike season this fall.
The Tornado will also look to improve their cyclocross finish from a season ago with Rimmer headlining that group as well. He will be joined by Ellis and William Guillen on the men's side while Cox and Armstrong will lead the group on the women's side. Cox and Armstrong will be joined by freshman Victoria Gates who comes to King after placing second in the junior female division at the USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships last season.
Moving to the road season, Caicedo will look to defend her road race national championship and be joined by Cox and Gates on the women's side and Guillen on the men's side.
King is slated to open the mountain bike season on September 5-6 in Conyers, Ga., at the Georgia Tech race. King will host a mountain bike race on campus on October 3-4, two weeks before the South East Collegiate Cycling Conference (SECCC) Championships in Clemson, S.C. on October 17-18. The USA Cycling Mountain Bike Championships will be held on October 23-25 in Snowshoe, W.Va.