Category: racing

Pen Velo is Recruiting for 2018!

PV is hosting a “Getting to Know Ya” ride for potential team members on Saturday, October 7, 2017. We are actively seeking Elite (U35) men categories 2-5 and women racers of ALL ages and categories for our 2018 program.

In addition to being part of a great club, we are a SERIOUS racing team with over 50 wins this season, including the Red Kit Omnium overall, several District Championship jerseys and 2nd overall NCNCA BAT ranking. We’re also a pretty nice group of folks who happen to LOVE racing bikes…and making new friends!

Come ride with us on October 7, learn more about our program and see if we’d be a good fit.

RSVP Required for this ride.
Men: Email Coach Matt directly with the following:
– what do you want to get out of a racing team?
– what do you bring to the game?
– current category and goals

Women: Respond on Meetup or email us directly.



When: 8:30am – 11:30am (be READY TO ROLL at 8:30am!)

Where: Meet at the Woodside Town Hall parking lot.

Route: Women will ride for a few miles with the guys, then break off for their own ride on a slightly different route.


NCNCA Opens the 2017 Road Season at San Bruno

Over 130 racers rang in the New Year with Pen Velo at the traditional NCNCA road season opener, the San Bruno Mountain Hill Climb. Mother Nature gave us sunny skies and moderate temperatures, and our PV volunteer crew showed up in force to make it a safe and successful event. Thanks to all the racers who came out and joined us for a wonderful morning. Many thanks also to the photographers who came and documented this event!

Click HERE for photos by Katie Truong

Click HERE for photos by Alex Chiu

Click HERE for photos by Craig Huffman

Results have been posted online – click HERE.


PV Women recruiting for 2017


Pen Velo Women at the Beat the Clock TT

Pen Velo Racing/Summit Bicycles is now recruiting women road and cyclocross racers for 2017. In addition to adding more riders to our strong W55+ masters team, we are especially looking to add racers in the younger masters age groups as well as elites (under 35). All experience levels and categories are welcome. If you want to find out what we’re all about, please come to our first recruiting ride on Saturday, October 15. We’ll meet at the Woodside Town Hall parking area (map) at 9:30am for a casual no-drop ride around the Peninsula. Route is TBD – it will include rolling hills, but no sustained climbs.

To RSVP for the ride or to ask questions, click HERE.

Can’t make this ride? We plan to have another one in November, also in Woodside – date TBA.

NCNCA Racers Open the 2016 Season at San Bruno Hillclimb

The 2016 NCNCA road racing season opened on Jan 1 with the San Bruno Hillclimb. Racers turned out in force to enjoy the dry and sunny (albeit chilly) conditions. Thanks to the riders, the NCNCA officiating crew and most importantly our PV volunteers for making this year’s event a big success!

Click HERE for links to event photos.

Click HERE for race results.

Matt McNamara Joins PV as Team Coach; Clark Natwick Retires, receives lifetime PV membership

coachmattWe are pleased to announce that Matt McNamara of the Sterling Sports Group has joined PV as our new team coach. Matt comes to us with a B.A. in Kinesiology from the University of Colorado and 20 years of experience in coaching and team management. He is a USAC Level 1/Elite Coach with power certification, a USAC certified skills instructor and helped to develop the curriculum for the USAC Beginner Racer Program. He is known to many racers in the NCNCA district as one of the co-directors of the Early Bird Training Series (the Early Bird Crits). He is also a contributing author for’s product reviews and its “Toolbox” section which deals with current research and coaching trends in endurance sports. Check out his most recent article documenting his experience at the Taiwan KOM Challenge. Welcome aboard, Coach Matt!

mg32285baspMatt will be building on the successful PV Racing Program developed by retiring coach Clark Natwick. Clark has been involved with PV for over 20 years, starting as an athlete and also serving as a board member and president prior to his 16-year tenure as team coach. However, Clark will not be leaving the PV family – he is being recognized for his many contributions to the success of our club with the first-ever lifetime membership in Pen Velo. Clark brought to PV a wealth of experience both as an athlete (10 national championship medals) and as a coach (USA Olympic Training Center, USA National Cyclocross Team, USA National MTB Team). In 2012, Clark made a brief comeback to competition as a masters athlete racing in Pen Velo colors, earning two NCNCA District Championships on the track and a bronze medal in team pursuit at the USAC Masters Track Nationals. Under his guidance, Pen Velo athletes achieved numerous team and individual awards on both the regional and national level. Thanks, Clark, for your service to PV and best wishes in your future endeavors!

PV Road Racing Success Recognized at NCNCA Awards Banquet

Pen Velo was recognized for a highly successful 2015 road racing season by the NCNCA at its annual awards banquet on October 17, 2015. Best All-Around Rider (BAR) Awards went to Erik Salander (M55+ 1/2/3/4) and Chris Levins (E4 – Spring). Erik was also recognized for his contributions to NCNCA as Results Coordinator with the Outstanding Volunteer Award. Additionally, Helen Casabona was recognized by the NCNCA Women’s Committee for finishing in 4th place in the 2015 Women’s Series. This was despite having her season cut short by injury. Topping it all off was the trophy for 5th Place in the Overall Team Points (BAT) Competition, rewarding a lot of hard work, training and outstanding race results by the entire team!

[slideshow_deploy id=’2200′]

In addition to the NCNCA awards and recognition, the following individual and team accomplishments are worthy of an honorable mention:

M35+ Cat 4 BAR (Fall) 5th place – Marco Constantino
M45+ Cat 4 BAR (Fall) 5th place – Mark Massey
W35+ 1/2/3 BAR 4th Place – Helen Casabona

E4 Team – 5th place
M35+ Cat 4 Team – 2nd place
M45+ Cat 4 Team – 3rd place
M55+ 1/2/3/4 Team – 2nd place
W35+ 1/2/3 Team – 3rd place

RKO Championship Weekend

Pen Velo found both individual and team success during the Red Kite Omnium Championship Weekend in both the Red Kite Omnium Finale (Sept. 5) and the NCNCA Masters District Criterium Championship (Sept 6).

Day 1:

The Red Kite Criterium on September 5 was the final event of the Red Kite Omnium, a series of road, time trial and criterium races that started in February and continued all season long with both individual and team competitions. There were some exciting individual performances for PV in the RKO Finale. The day was highlighted by Bill Brissman (assisted by a strong team) taking two 10-point primes and finishing in 5th place in the M55+ 3/4 race and protecting his narrow lead in the overall omnium in that category. Alex Jonas suffered a last-lap crash that cost him 2nd place in the E4 omnium. Despite having to walk his bike across the line after the field in the finale, Alex still finished 4th in the omnium. Thanks to contributions from many teammates over the course of the season, Pen Velo swept the master 3/4 team prizes as well as taking the best team prize in the 55+ 1/2/3 category.

[slideshow_deploy id=’2138′]

Day 2:

Day 2 was the NCNCA Masters District Criterium Championship, and it was a day for the PV Women’s team to shine. The PV women were represented by Sara Stearns, Heidi Fraser and 3-time district crit champ Norma Hilton. All three competed together, but in different age groups in the combined women’s 50+ race. All three put in strong performances, with Heidi animating the race with repeated attacks, Norma and Sara claiming Bear Jerseys in their respective categories, and Sara claiming a prime.

[slideshow_deploy id=’2151′]

Teamwork nets double wins for PV at Central Coast

Teamwork by PV racers paid off handsomely at the Central Coast circuit race on August 2. Seven PV racers competed in the combined 35+ cat 3/4 and 45+ cat 3/4 races and with a smart race plan and solid teamwork, PV came away with wins in both categories. Enjoy this slide show of photos by Jeff Vander Stucken and read Menko Johnson’s race report below!

[slideshow_deploy id=’2077′]

Race Report by Menko Johnson

After a great time getting back to racing last weekend, I was eager to give it another try so I signed up for the 35+ cat 3/4 race at CCCX Seaside.  The course is a 2.5 mi out and back that has a few small rollers with wind blowing in your face one direction, and at your back in the other.  The finish line is on the uphill section into the wind, making it quite a challenge.  As we lined up, I saw many sets of calves bigger than my head, and knew I would have no chance at all if we left it to a sprint.

Strategy for these combined category and age group races is really intriguing.  Because the 35s and 45s race together but are picked separately, it adds some complexity to breakaway situations because its difficult to know what categories are up the road, and cooperation can be impacted by that composition.  One group may be hanging back for a sprint and won’t contribute to a chase, while the other may have a break up the road and have to chase.  Before the race, Erik said that in the previous race a solo attack from a 55 rider prompted a 45 rider to bridge, and they rode away together and stayed away.  I felt this would be the best chance for me as well and figured I’d wait until 3 to go and make an a go.

PV had a large contingent in both races with Lenny, Phil and myself in 35s, and Erik, Tom, Steve and Markus in the 45s.  This was ideal because then we effectively had two teams working together and I simply talked with Phil and Lenny quickly to keep it simple—“nothing with any 35 gets away without 1 of us in it.”  With such a non-technical course, it was very easy for people to sit in and save energy while those out in the wind worked hard.  The first 2 laps there were some half-hearted breakaway attempts but they always came back.  PV was very active with Tom, Erik and Phil each putting in efforts to stretch things out and test the waters.  I sat back and watched to see who reacted, and started memorizing who might be my biggest threat while watching how things happened on the headwind and tailwind.  Making sure nobody took me out in the corners was about as exciting as things got.

The race was pretty uneventful until Markus decided he’d had enough of this and literally just accelerated away from the field. (VIDEO 1 at 15:30)  This was the key move of the race, because it allowed all of us to sit in and do zero work at the front, and reveal who cared enough to try and chase.  As it turns out, Markus was away for a good 15 minutes solo as we would close but never close and then it would open again.  Eventually Erik also went and was able to successfully bridge to Markus.  Now PV had 2 guys in the 45s off the front.

Phil rolled up to me with about 25 minutes left and I told him to cover anything that comes up his side, and I would do the same on mine.  The group at the front was slowing, and you could hear the gears clicking behind and riders prepared to make a jump.  A blur up the left side was all I saw and Phil was like a racehorse bounding out of the gates, immediately gluing himself to the rider trying to get away.  I am also accelerating as fast as I can, but waiting for just a moment to have someone come around me to pull me up.  Big calves responds, and I glue on and don’t pull at all.  We herd into the corner and so starts the 2nd half of the race.

I hear some tanging of equipment and screeching behind me, and I make a split second decision to try and bridge up to the break.  Luckily Tom was just in front of me, so as I attack he latches on while successfully preventing anyone else from getting onto his wheel (VIDEO 2 – 00:12).  I put my head down for 30 seconds and give an all out effort that spikes my HR up to 193 bpm before we hit the top of the roller.  I look back and see Tom and Markus on, and I desperately beg for help.  Poor Markus, spent from his efforts, pulls through and falls off the back as I do 400 watts in Tom’s draft to hold on.

As we’re heading downhill I can feel we can’t go as fast as the chasers, and wonder if this was a bad idea as we’re still going to see 3 laps to go and only have a few seconds gap at the turn around.  But Tom is strong and I figure we have to put in two hard laps and keep our gap before they give up.   With Tom next to me, I try and just push as hard as I can on the hill sections, and let him pull on the flatter sections where he is faster.  One lap goes by and the gap is still probably only 5-10 seconds.  As we make the turn around, I accidentally put a few bike lengths on Tom and he mentions that perhaps I would be faster by myself.  “Hell NO!” and I just tell him to hang on.  My mind wanders as my body screams at me and I’ve never been happier to have a teammate there to keep me going.  We keep going and finally the elastic stretches, and then breaks.  The chase loses a rider and drops to 3, and we can see the gap opening. At 18 minutes in, we’ve got the race-winning gap and just have to keep the gas on until the top of the hill to make sure we don’t give it up.  We come through the last corner to cheers all around from our PV cheering section, and Tom and I finish side-by-side with the biggest smiles we could muster while trying to recover our breath!  It was one of the most satisfying days of racing I’ve had in a long time, and it was just like we were back at training camp in January pushing each other, but this time the reward was much sweeter!

Impressive Medal Haul for PV Trackies at District Championships

Congratulations to our track racers who competed at the Masters District Track Championships at Hellyer Velodrome on July 11-12. The team brought home a total of 14 medals, including 7 gold. Click HERE to see the gold medal M55+ sprint team in action. Scroll down to see all results.

[slideshow_deploy id=’2058′]

All PV Results


55-59 Scratch Race: Bill Brissman 2nd, Erik Salander 3rd

55-59 2K Pursuit: Erik Salander 3rd

50-54 2K Pursuit: Ross Tinline 3rd



50-54 500M TT: Ross in 3rd

55-59 500M TT: Ray in 1st (State Champ!)

55-59 48 lap Points Race: Bill in 2nd

55+ 3K Team Pursuit: Bill Brissman, John Suarez, Erik Salander, Kurt Bickel (Reno) 1st (State Champs)

45+ 3K Team Pursuit: Ross and 3 other non-PV racers 1st (State Champ)

55+ Team Sprint: Erik, Bill and Kurt in 1st (State Champs)

55+ Team Sprint: Ray and 2 others in 2nd


Medal Count

7 Gold; 3 Silver; 4 Bronze


Brissman: 2 x Gold, 2 x Silver

Tinline: 1 x Gold, 2 x Bronze

Gildea: 1 x Gold, 1 x Silver

Salander: 2 x Gold, 2 x Bronze

Suarez: 1 x Gold

Pen Velo Women take Sattley by Storm!

The Pen Velo women made their presence known at the NCNCA District Time Trial Championships this weekend, with four women competing in the ITT and TTT events. Yvonne Walbroehl and Cindy Mike raced the 20km ITT in the very competitive W55-59 division, with Yvonne taking the silver medal and setting a new personal best for the course. Sara Stearns and Norma Hilton earned silver medals in the W60-64 and W65-69 divisions respectively, with Sara also setting a new PR. Later in the day, all four women took on the 40km long course for the team time trial event. Although the competition was, well, non-existant, this event still prevented a challenge as three members of the team had never done such a long TT. Anchored by TTT veteran Yvonne, the team came together nicely and survived the crosswinds to take home the coveted Bear Jersey for PV!

While the women were the largest contingent of PV racers at Sattley this year, the men were well represented by Lanier Benkard and Jeffrey Patterson. Lanier earned the bronze medal in the M45-49 40km ITT in a very strong field.

[slideshow_deploy id=’2035′]