Athlete Interviews

Alberto Solanno

Height: 6’0″ December Weight: 195 lbs. Race Weight: 180-185 lbs. Birthdate, Location: San Jose, Costa Rica. Childhood Heroes: “Juan de Dios Castillo, a local cyclist who won the Tour de Costa Rica when I was a kid. And my local soccer team.” Hobbies and Interests: …read more >

Allison Oishi

Height: 5’4” December Weight: “125 lbs.” Race Weight: “117 lbs.” Birthdate: “April 24, 1978.” Childhood Heroes: “Any babysitter who let me stay up late.” Hobbies and Interests: “Cooking, eating.” Favorite Movies: “Not really much of a movie person.” Musical Tastes: “I tend to go through …read more >

Amanda Rinderer

Height: 5ft 7in December weight: 135lbs … Hey, I like to eat! Racing weight: 126-128lbs Birthdate: May 23, 1981. Hobbies and interests: “Triathlon, cycling, traveling, and eating. I have an extremely long bucket list of places I’d love to go and experience. I’m all about …read more >

Andrew Shapiro

Height: 6’1” December Weight: 194 lbs. Race Weight: 188 lbs. – “Hopefully 180 this year!” Birthdate: April 15, 1972 Childhood Heroes: “Mike Schmidt – or anyone on the 1980 Philadelphia Phillies.” Hobbies and Interests: “My kids, cycling, cooking, wine.” Favorite Movies: “Blade Runner, Wild at …read more >

Andrew Shelby

Andrew Shelby likes to think of his introduction to cycling similar to the movie, “Breaking Away.” He and a few guys from the artsy, hippy dorm at Indiana University formed a team to compete in the fraternity- dominated Little 500 bike race. Andrew loved rolling …read more >

Arshad Bahl

Height: 5’8″ Weight: 165, having dropped 30 pounds in the last year. Goal weight is 150 by April 2012. Birthdate: November 7th, 1967 Childhood Heroes: “Pele – grew up watching soccer. Greg Lemond when he won the Tour by 8 seconds. That was when I …read more >

Ben Lesnak

Growing up, Ben Lesnak religiously trained and played baseball. Originally a pitcher and infielder, he became a catcher during high school and also briefly played on his college team. During his first few years of high school, Ben also ran cross-country with moderate success until …read more >

Beth Bonilla

Growing up, Beth Bonilla stayed active trying to keep up with her two brothers. They all played soccer as far back as she can remember, and she ran track and cross-country in high school. After college, she began long distance running and completed her first …read more >

Bob Crescitelli

Growing up, cycling was not a sport but a necessary means of survival. Bob used cycling at a young age to escape from a difficult home environment. He would disappear for hours and purposely get lost. Bob gravitated towards physically demanding sports. He began competing …read more >

Brian Bressler

Brian likes mud and suffering. Brian was fortunate to find cyclocross. Brian started cycling in his early-30s after a painful knee injury forced him to hang up the running shoes. His good friend took him mountain biking one morning and by lunchtime he was bidding …read more >

Brian Griffith

“As a kid I was always riding my bike. I lived a couple miles from my closest friends, and the only way we ever got to hang out was to ride to each other’s house. Despite all this riding, I was still a short, chunky …read more >

Bryan Carbone

Bryan Carbone grew up playing team sports like hockey and soccer and the bike was a simple mode of transportation. After school, he’d ride to the deli for a soda and some Honey Buns, or to meet his buddies to go skateboarding. Occasionally, he’d tag …read more >

Buddy Ralston

Growing up, I was always a three-sport athlete. I played a sport in every season available. I used Soccer to prepare for Wrestling and Wrestling to prepare for Baseball and Baseball to prepare for Soccer, and the cycle continued from age 5 through high school …read more >

Caleb Bonilla

Caleb’s favorite pastime as a kid was riding his bike at the “bike jumps” where he had dreams of being a BMX’er. Mountain biking stole that dream, but then somebody stole his mountain bike (anybody seen a neon orange Jazz Vertical around?). His next bike …read more >

Chris Fritz

Chris says his love for cycling began the minute his training wheels came off. The very next day, he found a ramp to jump his bicycle, and riding his bike every day until he was told to come inside by his parents became the daily …read more >

Colleen Conway

Colleen’s athletic interests started in high school when she joined the high school track team. She was a sprinter and especially loved working with teammates in the 400 and 800-meter relays. Although she dabbled in track in college, she left athletic competition behind. Fast forward …read more >

Cyndi Steiner

Height: 5’9” December Weight: 134 lbs. Race Weight: 132 lbs. Birthdate: January 29, 1965 Childhood Heroes: “My high school biology teacher. He taught us how to think for ourselves, rather than believe everything we were told. He taught us how to think critically, ask the …read more >

Dan Goldsmith

In the summer of 2005, Daniel Goldsmith began to ride his bike around town in hopes to start to get in shape as his brother Matt inspired him to get into cycling. Dan became more and more interested in racing as he began to watch …read more >

Dana Fallon

From Little League, wrestling, and football, sports have always been a part of Dana’s life. One of his biggest regrets was giving up the piano as a kid because all he wanted to do was play outside. The desire to compete as an adult led …read more >

Dave Richman

“Spring 1981, Cleveland, Ohio – when I became a roadie.” “When I was in 9th grade, a buddy invited me to go with him to something called ‘Bike America,’ a cycling expo at the downtown convention center scheduled for the following weekend. Not sure why …read more >

David Carr

David Carr did his first century thirty-five years ago while a teenager in Atlanta, Georgia, and cycling has been his passion ever since. For a brief time in the late 80s, he started to train for bike races, but a basketball injury prevented him from …read more >

David Harrell

Dave Harrell started out with the typical childhood sports — baseball and soccer. In high school, he jumped over to wrestling, but back injuries forced him out of the sport prior to college. From there he picked up running primarily because it was easy on …read more >

Denise Bishop

Height: 5’8” December Weight: 155 lbs. Race Weight: 142 lbs. Birthdate: February 26, 1971 Childhood Heroes: “Wonder Woman and the Bionic Woman.” Hobbies and Interests: “Reading about cycling nutrition. Baking and making decorative specialty cakes.” Favorite Movies: “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast …read more >

Dillon Van Wart

Height: 6’0” 

 

 December Weight: “155 lbs.

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Race Weight: “150 lbs.

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Birthdate: “March 27,1996

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Childhood Heroes: “Lance Armstrong, Misty May and Kerry Walsh.”

  

 Hobbies and Interests: “Cars, bikes, soccer, bikes, and bikes.” 

  

 Favorite Movies: “Avengers, Captain America (1 and 2), all James Bond movies.”

   

Musical …read more >

Ed Crossman

It all started with a layaway purchase. Soon after forking over all of his birthday and chore money, Ed had a beginner mountain bike. He took it through the short trails behind his house and anywhere else he could for years. However, the bike was …read more >

Eric Toff

Eric loves riding his bicycle, but it wasn’t always that way. When he was 5, his parents tried to teach him how to ride a bike without training wheels, and he wanted nothing to do with it – literally screaming, crying, and kicking the bike. …read more >

Evan Cooper

Evan Cooper has played hockey since forever and is currently the goalie for the Northern Valley Regional High School ice hockey team. Evan’s other interests include snowboarding, and before he got into cycling, he was actually “planning” on becoming a ski bum after college! He …read more >

Fabienne Gerard

Height: 5’7” December Weight: 130lbs Race Weight: 125lbs Birthdate: January 11, 1971 Childhood Heroes: “Goldorak, MacGyver.” Hobbies and Interests: “Reading anything cycling, reading the New York Review of Books, cooking, going to the movie theater, spending time with my family and friends.” Favorite Movies: “All …read more >

Frank Ramos

As a kid, Frank Ramos loved all things outdoors. His early love was fishing the river in his backyard. Armed with a solid steel Huffy, he would duel with the neighborhood kids for the daily sprints up and down their quarter-mile dirt road. The desire …read more >

Gavriel Epstein

Gavriel Epstein started cycling at the tender age of 11 and competed in his first race at 14 in the freezing cold of Central Park, NYC. Garnering excellent results in races such as Housatonic Hills and the Unionvale Road Race, he quickly moved up the …read more >

Jacob Schofield

Height: 5′ 10” December Weight: 140 Race Weight: 132-140 Birthdate: 09/29/90 Childhood Heroes: “I feel like I named names that’d be a lie. I don’t remember.” Hobbies and Interests: “Reading; books are amazing. I also am a not so closetted fan of Anime and Sci-fi.” …read more >

James Pearl

Height: 5’11” December Weight: “153lbs.” Race Weight: “149 lbs.” Birthdate: “April 29th, 1986.” Childhood Heroes: “The Ninja Turtles.” Hobbies and Interests: “Motor vehicles and going fast. Sleeping on the beach. Breaking Things.” Favorite Movies: “Shoot ’em up stuff. Bourne Movies, American Gangster, Training Day, The …read more >

Jenn DeFalco

“Growing up, my brother had a stingray bicycle. I wanted one too. I got a lime green ‘girlie’ one, with the banana boat seat. “Next, I got a bike my Dad had found, just a simple single- speed, which I spray-painted white. I rode that …read more >

Jerry Gala

Height: 5’10” December Weight: 155 lbs. Race Weight: 148 lbs. Birthdate: May 23, 1969 Childhood Heroes: “Superman.” Hobbies and Interests: “Riding bikes with my son.” Musical Tastes: “Some old rock, some new.” Favorite TV Shows: “Criminal Minds, Surviving the Cut, Sniper. I also enjoy watching …read more >

Jesse Gutierrez

“Growing up in upstate NY, my brother and I spent all of our time riding our BMX bikes, skateboarding, and downhill skiing at the local mountain. From ages 7 through 11, I raced BMX at the local race track in Athens, NY. I was also …read more >

Jesse O’Donnell

Jesse attended Richard Stockton College from 2001-2005.  During his college years, he was a mediocre cross country and track athlete.  After taking several years off after graduating, his neighbor convinced him to give a local triathlon a try.  In June 2009, Jesse competed in a …read more >

Jim Vreeland

Height: 5’8″ December Weight: 180 Race Weight: 170 Birthdate: November 30, 1974 Childhood Heroes: “Matt Hoffman, Kirk Hammett.” Hobbies and Interests: “Volkswagens and Guitars.” Favorite Movies: “Rad, Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” Musical Tastes: “My iPod is filled with everything from Christina Aguilera to …read more >

John Fiadjoe

John grew up playing tennis, playing on his high school team, then college team for 4 years. Basketball also became a passion in college, but by his late-30s the knees started to act up and the orthopedic surgeon gave him two options: surgery to remove …read more >

John Raheb

John Raheb has been an athlete since his teenage years. Today, he is a built like a linebacker, 5’10”, 185 pounds of muscle, telephone-pole thighs, a pure sprinter… but unbelievably he was the shortest kid in his early high school years – and skinny, too! …read more >

Julie Jones

In high school, Julie was very athletic, playing basketball and tennis. In college, however, she was anything but! She gained the proverbial Freshman Fifteen and her exercise involved lifting cases of beer ☺ By the time Julie got to veterinary school, she was disgusted with …read more >

Ken Rowe

Ken ran track and cross country in high school and played soccer in college. In 2001, Ken decided to do the Seagull century on the Eastern Shore of Maryland but during training for this event, his hybrid bike’s rear wheel locked up. While waiting for …read more >

Kenneth Lundgren

“I was staring out my window the other day – I realized I coach the best athletes in regions across the entire country. These athletes will go down in local history. Motivation, it does not come from me — but I find it, cultivate it, …read more >

Kuria Njenga

Kuria Njenga’s father was a diplomat, so he was lucky to live in a number of different places when growing up: Kenya, the United States, Ethiopia, Switzerland, India. Soccer was Kuria’s favorite sport, along with BMX riding with his brothers and friends. Most of his …read more >

Kyle Paolucci

Kyle Paolucci is a Psychology and Criminal Justice double major at Monmouth University with aspirations of working for the Federal Bureau of Investigations. Kyle started with Elite Endurance in the spring and, in his first year back on the bike after a five-year hiatus, thorougly …read more >

Laura Slavin

Height: 5’5” December Weight:“105lbs” Race Weight: “105lbs. Yup, my race weight is the same. Can’t get heavier and shouldn’t get skinnier.” Birthdate: “July 29th. A Leo. By all accounts.” Childhood Heroes:“I never really had any heroes as a kid…” Hobbies and Interests:“We all know that there’s no hobbies or …read more >

Laura Winberry

Likes: “Dirt, sliding sideways on snow, the earth and its elements, knobby tires, pow turns and tree runs, two-wheeled devices used for flying through the forest, pump tracks, mud, slippery off-camber roots followed by wet rock gardens, small doubles, well-engineered berms, the smell of pine …read more >

Lauren Dagostino

Growing up, Lauren Dagostino was always an athlete, competing in soccer, basketball, field hockey and lacrosse. To this day, Lauren still holds the record for most basketball points scored at her high school. It wasn’t until she moved to New Jersey did she realize she …read more >

Liam Panero

Height: 5’ 11” December Weight: 155-158 lbs. Race Weight: 153 lbs. Birthdate: March 17, 1997 Childhood Heroes: “Never really had any as a kid. I enjoyed doing things differently, my own way, so emulating a hero didn’t occur to me.” Hobbies and Interests: “Gracie Brazilian …read more >

Mandi Pearl

“While I was growing up, I always had bikes in my life. What started as a means of transportation and freedom, turned into me begging my father at 13 years old to buy me a DK Six Pack. That lasted a few years until I …read more >

Mark Alden

Growing up, Mark Alden was addicted to motorcycles, starting off with a little Honda XR-75 when he was 13. He progressed to racing both motocross and hare-scrambles, even dabbling with racing motorcycles on the road. By the time Mark was 21, local off-road riding areas …read more >

Mark Curran

Mark Curran has always been around things with two wheels that go fast. Beginning with a lawnmower-engine-powered mini-bike at about age 8, he progressed to riding motorcycles with his father and began bike-riding in earnest at about the same time. Mark’s formative years on the …read more >

Matt Goldsmith

In the summer of 2004, Matt Goldsmith began to ride his Toys R Us bike around town because it gave him the freedom to buy candy and escape from playing hours of pointless video games. Riding the bike became a habit, and as the summer …read more >

Michael Whitaker

Height: 6’0” December Weight: 200 lbs. Race Weight: 180-190 lbs. Birthdate: 11/24/73, Lancaster PA. Childhood Heroes: “Loved watching Joe Montana as quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers. I remember watching the championship game between the 49ers and Cowboys when Dwight Clark had ‘The Catch.’ Then …read more >

Mike Borda

Mike Borda has been a lifelong athlete, a 3-sport athlete in high school and continuing his wrestling career at La Salle University. Mike also has an affinity for rugby, playing and coaching from HS through graduate school. Mike played for the Philadelphia-White Marsh, a premier …read more >

Mike Gisler

Westwood Velo’s Mike Gisler is one of the region’s top time trialists. Formerly a bunch sprinter, he has matured into a specialist in the Race of Truth, winning the 2006 and 2007 NJ State Time Trial Cup Championship – along with winning the 2007 New …read more >

Nicholas David

Height: 6’0” December Weight: 165 lbs. Race Weight: “Shooting for 155 for 2011.” Birthdate: June 5th, 1980 Childhood Heroes: “Bruce Lee.” Hobbies and Interests: “Surfing, traveling, wine, beer, reading, and the occasional cigar.” Favorite Movies: “Point Break.” Musical Tastes: “99% of the time, I listen …read more >

Nick Bruno

Nick Bruno grew up playing ice and roller hockey. However, when he was 10, his family moved to a quiet street, near the woods. From then on, Nick can remember always being on the bike, graduating from BMX to mountain to the road bike. Nick …read more >

Nick Salerno

Nick has always enjoyed riding bikes. Growing up, he had been exposed to all types of cycling. Beginning with BMX, he could be found on the streets, angling sheets of plywood up to cinder blocks. He progressed to dirt- jumping and developed a sixth sense …read more >

Paul Cresti

Growing up, Paul Cresti was always involved in sports. He played both soccer and basketball as an early youth into high school. He continued to play soccer in college for NJIT. Today, he plays pick-up games here and there while coaching both his son and …read more >

Pete Warner

Life has been a bit of an adventure for Peter Warner during the last ten years. After he turned 30, he decided enough was enough and it was time to get back into shape. No more excuses. On a challenge between a few co-workers, Peter …read more >

Ray Bowling

As a child, Ray Bowling was very active athletically. He competed in high school wrestling, football, and track & field. Two years after high school, He followed in his father’s footsteps and joined the ranks of the U.S. Army where he continued to excel in …read more >

Richard Hofbauer

Rich Hofbauer finished 2007 in strong fashion, racking up numerous top-5s at cyclo-cross events, culminating with 4th at the New Jersey State Cyclo-Cross Championships. Rich first got involved with cycling in the early 1990s, trading a radio-controlled airplane for his first mountain bike. At first …read more >

Rob Havemeyer

As a teenager, Rob’s favorite activities included riding and racing his BMX bike… He clearly remembers having a halfpipe in his driveway. “I used to jump over anything I could, including my parent’s station wagon.” During college, he turned to gym training and bodybuilding, but …read more >

Robb Hampton

Height: 6’1” December Weight: 180 lbs. Race Weight: “165 lbs. Yeah, I know I have a long way to go!” Birthdate: April 21st, 1975 Childhood Heroes: “Cal Ripken Jr, Don Mattingly, Mickey Mantle, Larry Bird, Hank Aaron, Wilber Marshall, John Riggins, Joe Montana, Dan Marino, …read more >

Ryan Pettit

Height: 5’9″ December Weight: 172 – 175lbs. Race Weight: 165-168lbs. Birthdate: June 9th, 1982 Childhood Heroes: “GI Joe, Lawrence Taylor.” Hobbies and Interests: “Tech, all things geeky –Star Wars, Star Trek, Harry Potter…” Favorite Movies: “Star Wars, Top Gun, Super Troopers… and plenty more.” Musical …read more >

Scott Sugent

“I learned how to ride a bike on a red Columbus convertible. The top-tube was removable for girls or… so I wouldn’t crush the family jewels. My parents put it back on when I learned how to ride. “My next bike was a discarded Schwinn …read more >

Sean McCarthy

Growing up, Sean had nothing more on his mind than his BMX bike – everything from freestyle tricks to racing anyone that wanted a piece on the local cemetery circuit. He was always the kid who was the first one to test a new jump …read more >

Sean Pasieka

Growing up, Sean never that about cycling. He spent his youth playing soccer and lacrosse. Cycling didn’t enter his mind until 2007. After many years of playing soccer, he was plagued by constant hip pain during physical activity. Growing frustrated, he finally went to see …read more >

Sean Runnette

“I rode like everyone else when I was younger – or like a lot of people, the lucky ones. The bike was a key to the world. Without it, I would have taken a whole lot longer getting lost. And finding my way back. “The …read more >

Shane Moran

Shane Moran has been an athlete since high school. He played football through high school and was a standout wrestler, the co-captain of the Bergenfield wrestling team. He went to the University of Texas and got into mountain biking after graduation. He eventually switched to …read more >

Shawn Erickson

Height: 6’3” December Weight: 170 lbs. Race Weight: 166 lbs. Birthdate: August 25, 1965 Childhood Heroes: “Kip Keino, Dr J, Joe Morgan.” Hobbies and Interests: “Cooking, eating, hiking, exploring New York.” Favorite Movies: “A little high/low here: This is Spinal Tap, Red Desert.” Musical Tastes: …read more >

Stacey Barbossa

Stacey Barbossa has ALWAYS been an athlete. Basketball and softball were her passions from first gradethrough high school and college. Stacey even played semi-pro softball in New Jersey as well as in California. Competitive? You bet… While in chiropractic college in Los Angeles, Stacey took …read more >

Tanner Browne

Hometown: Waldorf, MD. Born in Naples, Italy. Attending: Thomas Stone High School, Waldorf, MD. Studying: Wants to be Engineering major in college First bike: Redline Conquest Cyclocross bike. Favorite movies: “Skyfall. I prefer action and comedy movies.” Favorite route when training: “Horsehead Road takes me …read more >

Ted Horwitz

Ted Horwitz currently races for Heart House, an elite team based in south Jersey. His love for bikes began in middle school as an after-school sport. In 1999, while a sophomore at Proctor Academy in Andover NH, he participated in a fall triathlon and completed …read more >

Wendi Sebastian

“Growing up, I was always a tomboy… Climbing trees, riding bikes, skateboarding… anything that involved being outside. I started snowboarding at 15 and have been doing it non-stop since, even competitively. But competitions came to a halt when I tore my ACL at the age …read more >

Zach Koop

Competitive sports have always been an important part of Zachary Koop’s life. He began playing “A” level youth hockey when he was 7 years old. He also learned how to ride a BMX bike pretty well, and in his early teens he began “working” at …read more >