The Elevate Cycling team has become the latest domestic team to move up from USA Cycling’s elite amateur ranks to become a UCI Continental team. This move comes in the team’s second year under title sponsor Elevate, and the team’s sixth season in existence. To bolster the roster, the outfit has added Julian Kyer and Joseph Schmalz, formerly from Team SmartStop and Hincapie Racing, respectively.
“It’s exciting that Elevate has the faith in the program to support it at a higher level,” Elevate team owner John McAllister said. “Also, to be the first team to be truly owned and operated out of Texas, is special for me and our key sponsors.”
Kyer finished fifth in the U.S. professional road race championships in 2014; he also rode to fourth in the TT that year. For 2016, he’ll shift his focus to time trials. Schmalz, 25, will be a fifth-year pro after his three years with Hincapie, as well as one season with Bissell. The team also added 20-year-old Connor Brown, the youngest team member. Brown is coming off a season that saw him win the collegiate national road race with Lindenwood University.
“I’m excited about this team. We have great sponsors lined up, and everyone involved is motivated for the next step Elevate is taking,” Kyer said. “Personally, I’m excited to work towards some new goals, and to help develop this program in any way that I can. It has been hard to remember that it’s only November and that we still have quite a while before racing gets underway.”
The team will focus on North American UCI events as well as NRC stage races, road races, and select criteriums.
“At Elevate, the health and wellness of our employees and our community is a very important part of our culture,” Elevate COO Jason Harvison said. “Cycling is a passion for many of our employees so sponsoring the Elevate Cycling program is a natural fit and a great opportunity for us to show support for the sport.”
Along with its title sponsor, the team will partner with Castelli, Michelin, WD40 Bike, Source Endurance, Chamois Butt’r, Lazer, Reed and Scardino, Bicycle World Multisport HQ, and Profile Design. Bikes will be provided by Bicycle World.