Team Panther p/b Competitive Cyclist Update: Second Half Season Update

Posted: Sep 14, 2011

Firing on all cylinders: Eleven wins and fourteen podium finishes since July 1st Team Panther has put in a successful second half of the season, starting with strong performances by Erik Hamilton (5th, Best Amateur) and Ryan Aitcheson (12th, Stillwater Criterium stage) at the NRC calendar event Nature Valley Stage Race in Minnesota. The team sent several riders to the US Elite National Road Championships in Augusta, GA where Erik finished 13th in the time trial and the team raced strongly in the road race, despite extreme heat and humidity. The hard work in June paid off with a GC win for Erik Hamilton and two stage wins for the team at the Tour of the Valley stage race in Youngstown, OH on July 9-11. Erik used a strong time trial and 2nd in the road race to take the GC, with Paul Martin and Kirk Albers 3rd and 4th on GC. Paul Martin won the time trial and criterium stages with Ryan Aitcheson also on the criterium podium in 3rd. Kirk Albers took the sprint win at the Maillot Jaune Road Race in Fenton, MI on July 23 behind a leadout from Greg Christian and Mac Brennan followed up with a win out of a breakaway the next day in the Le Champion Pave Criterium in Flint, MI on July 24. Chris Uberti continued the hot streak by taking back to back victories at the Team Spin Lakewood, OH Criterium on July 30 and the Milford, MI Criterium on July 31. The next weekend, Paul Martin won the Sylvania Criterium in Toledo, OH on August 7th, while Chris Uberti scored a top 10 at the Tour of Elk Grove Criterium just outside Chicago. Ryan Aitcheson added another win on August 14th, taking a solo win with an attack on the final hill at the Niagara Classic Road Race in Pelham, Ontario. The team added two 2nd place finishes by Paul Martin that same weekend at the Cherry Roubaix Criterium and Road Race in Traverse City, MI with strong teamwork from Greg, Mac and Ryan Cross. Greg Christian showed his strong form with a win at the Birmingham Bike Festival Criterium in Birmingham, MI on August 28, powering a three man break then leaving his companions behind for victory, while Ryan Aitcheson took out the field sprint. Chris Uberti won the Milford, OH Sunflower Classic Criterium on September 9th in Cincinnati, OH. Chris also showed good form at the Gateway Cup Criterium series in St. Louis, MO over Labor Day weekend, finishing 2nd at the Giro della Montagna Criterium, besting Brad Huff (Jelly Belly) but coming just short of the win. Ryan Aitcheson also scored two top ten finishes at the Gateway Cup criteriums. Other top results for the team include: 2nd