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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Cycling team hosts first competition of season

Photo by Photo by Carson Schulz

Dirty Dowling, a three-stage race, opened with a time trial and criterium on Saturday, Feb. 5.

Despite threats of severe weather earlier last week, the Texas A&M Cycling Team hosted the first competition of the season Saturday and Sunday, riding away with 12 top-10 finishes under chilly, but sunny conditions.
Dirty Dowling, a three-stage race, kicked off the 2022 South Central Collegiate Cycling Conference, or SCCCC, season with 19 Aggies competing against 78 riders from eight other conference schools. The team ended with 10 top-10 finishers among the men and two top-three finishers in the women’s divisions after a time trial and criterium on Saturday, Feb. 5, and a road race on Feb. 6.
Seniors Dylan Hughes, Evan Kemppainen and Ryker Richardson finished fourth, sixth and 10th, respectively, in a field of 11 in the A division. In the B group, junior Ethan Kane, senior Michael Kasper, senior Eduardo Uria and sophomore Nathaniel Corneau finished seventh, 12th, 16th and 17th, respectively, out of 20 riders. In group C, senior Cade Ellis took second place and senior Ryan Kerch finished seventh in a field of 11. Among 25 competitors in group D, graduate student Dalton Pyle placed seventh, junior Omor Almamun placed 11th, junior Alejandro Bonilla placed 18th and freshman Ryan Hearnsberger placed 19th. In group A of women’s races, sophomore Paige Zizka placed third in a field of five. In group B, graduate student McKenzie Barth placed second out of three. All results with times can be found at the SCCCC results page.
This conference consists of 16 colleges in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. The A, B, C and D groups are determined by experience and skill level, with A being most experienced and D the least. There were three skills groups in the women’s competitions. The road race began near North Dowling Road with the time trial on Rock Prairie Road in College Station. The criterium was held on West Campus around Research Parkway.
Club president Kemppainen, a mechanical engineering senior, said while collegiate racing is highly competitive and the team has some competitive racers, he is satisfied just to host the event and said members of all skill levels are welcome in the A&M club that dates back 1976.
“I am not as focused on the actual racing aspect, but more so getting people out there riding bikes,” Kemppainen said.
Ellis, who has been on the team going on two years, said he prepared for the race by buying cold-weather gear. The agricultural systems management senior said he was eager to get back to racing with the team this season.
“I love riding bikes, and love hanging around people who also enjoy riding,” Ellis said. “It’s fun and not stressful, and is more about enjoying it and having fun while doing it more than anything.
“We have this mutual connection between us all with different walks of life who just enjoy riding together,” Ellis said.
The weekend race was graduate student Dalton Pyle‘s first competition. Overall, he said he felt “happy and proud” about his performance.
The teams will compete next on Feb. 26-27 in Waco and on March 26-27 in Denton. The last competition of the season will be April 9-10 in Wichita Falls.
For more information about the A&M Cycling Team and how to join, visit

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  • Seniors Dylan Hughes, Evan Kemppainen and Ryker Richardson finished fourth, sixth and 10th, respectively, in the A division race.

    Photo by Photo by Paige Zizka

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