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Powless, Faulkner, McNulty, Ewers headline strong USA squad at road world championships

USA also sends a talented U23 men's squad that includes Luke Lamperti and Kevin Vermaerke.

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Neilson Powless, Kristen Faulkner, Brandon McNulty, and Veronica Ewers will headline Team USA at the road world championships in Wollongong, Australia next month.

USA Cycling announced the 24-rider squad that will wear the stars and stripes in the road races and time trials this week.

The UCI announced the team allocations Monday, based off the world rankings on August 16, with the elite women’s squad earning a maximum of seven places while the men have got six out of a possible eight.

“The results we’ve seen from the Americans this year have been incredible. The team is looking strong and will fare well on this dynamic course,” USA Cycling’s director of road Michael Sayers said. “The first selection will come only 40km into the race with a significant climb, then the riders will head into a very technical city circuit similar to 2021, putting pressure on the field from start to finish. The front group at the finish will be made up of well-rounded riders, and we have quite a few of those.”

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Despite having six possible places, USA Cycling announced just five riders for the team in Wollongong.

Powless is one of the headline names on the roster after he scored the USA’s best worlds result in over 20 years when he rode to fifth in Flanders last year. McNulty, who helped Tadej Pogačar to second at the Tour de France this summer, joins Powless on the roster.

Despite only being 20, Magnus Sheffield will jump up to the elite level for this year’s worlds. Sheffield turned pro this season with Ineos Grenadiers and has made a big impression with his first win coming at the Vuelta a Andalucía in February.

The trio of Powless, McNulty, and Sheffield are likely to spearhead the team’s ambitions in the road race with Lawson Craddock and Kyle Murphy providing some strong support. Sheffield and Craddock will also contest the individual time trial, while it’s not clear if the USA will field a squad for the mixed team relay.

Thanks to a strong season, the women’s squad will be at full strength in Wollongong with a seven-rider team. Pro cycling newcomers Faulkner and Ewers have played a big role in putting the nation on the front foot this season.

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Faulkner claimed two stage wins and 11th overall at the Giro d’Italia Donne this summer while Ewers finished ninth overall at the Tour de France Femmes a few weeks later. The duo will provide plenty of attacking force on the hilly course.

Coryn Labecki will add to that attack, and she also gives the team a big option if it comes down to a sprint. Labecki hasn’t raced since the nationals in June but will return to racing at the Classic Lorient Agglomération this weekend.

Krista Doebel-Hickok, Leah Thomas, Emma Langley, and Skylar Schneider complete the team with the latter two making their worlds debuts.

This year will see a U23 world title awarded to the women for the first time, but the winner will come out of the elite field. None of the riders named to the Team USA’s women’s squad will be eligible for the title with the squad going all in on the elite win.

Faulkner and Thomas will take on the individual time trial.

Five riders will make up the U23 men’s team with Luke Lamperti, Sean Quinn, Matthew Riccitello, Kevin Vermaerke, and Patrick Welch set to ride. Quinn and Welch will contest the time trial.

Elite Men

Road race
Lawson Craddock (Houston; Team BikeExchange-Jayco)
Brandon McNulty (Phoenix; UAE Team Emirates)
Kyle Murphy (Washington, D.C.; Human Powered Health)
Neilson Powless (Roseville, Calif.; EF Education-EasyPost)
Magnus Sheffield (Pittsford, N.Y.; Ineos Grenadiers)

Time trial
Lawson Craddock (Houston; Team BikeExchange-Jayco)
Magnus Sheffield (Pittsford, N.Y.; Ineos Grenadiers)

Elite Women

Road race
Krista Doebel-Hickok (Marina Del Rey, Calif.; EF Education-TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank)
Veronica Ewers (Moscow, Idaho; EF Education-TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank)
Kristen Faulkner (Homer, Alaska; Team BikeExchange-Jayco)
Coryn Labecki (Tustin, Calif.; Team Jumbo-Visma)
Emma Langley (Richmond, Va.; EF Education-TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank)
Skylar Schneider (Milwaukee, Wis.; L39ion of Los Angeles)
Leah Thomas (Santa Clara, Calif.; Trek-Segafredo)

Time trial
Kristen Faulkner (Homer, Alaska; Team BikeExchange-Jayco)
Leah Thomas (Santa Clara, Calif.; Trek-Segafredo)

U23 Men

Road race
Luke Lamperti (Sebastopol, Calif.; Trinity Racing)
Sean Quinn (Sherman Oaks, Calif.; EF Education-EasyPost)
Matthew Riccitello (Tucson, Ariz.; Israel Premier-Tech)
Kevin Vermaerke (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.; Team DSM)
Patrick Welch (Northfield, Minn.; Kelly Benefits Strategies)

Time trial
Sean Quinn (Sherman Oaks, Calif.; EF Education-EasyPost)
Patrick Welch (Northfield, Minn.; Kelly Benefits Strategies)

Junior Men

Road race
Alex Gustin (San Diego; LUX Cycling Development Team)
Viggo Moore (Feldberg, Ger., LUX Cycling Development Team)
Artem Shmidt (Cumming, Ga.; Hot Tubes Development Cycling)

Time trial
Alex Gustin (San Diego; LUX Cycling Development Team)
Artem Shmidt (Cumming, Ga.; Hot Tubes Development Cycling)

Junior Women

Road race
Makala Jaramillo (Black Forest, Colo.; Virginia’s Blue Ridge TWENTY24)
Chloe Patrick (Carson, Calif.; Serious Cycling)
Katherine Sarkisov (North Potomac, Md.; LUX Cycling Development Team)
Samantha Scott (Boise, Idaho; Virginia’s Blue Ridge TWENTY24)

Time trial
Chloe Patrick (Carson, Calif.; Serious Cycling)
Katherine Sarkisov (North Potomac, Md.; LUX Cycling Development Team)