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Monthly Archives: June 2013


SALT LAKE CITY —  A total of 16 professional cycling teams will compete at this year’s Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, the first weeklong UCI 2.1-rated stage race in North America following the Tour de France.  Jelly Belly p/b Kenda was among the teams announced by race organizers this week.

The Tour of Utah will take place August 6-11, 2013.

The final field represents teams registered from seven countries on four continents – Australia, Brazil, China, Italy, Luxembourg, South Africa and the United States.

“The field for this year’s Tour is outstanding with professional teams coming from across the globe to compete on Utah’s scenic byways,” said Steve Miller, president of Miller Sports Properties which organizes the Tour of Utah. “For cycling fans traveling to Utah, the race is a great opportunity to witness the speed, strength and skills of the riders from the best domestic squads, as well as the international teams we typically watch on television.”

Based in San Marcos, California, Jelly Belly p/b Kenda has the longest-running domestic sponsor in the sport. The team returns to the Tour of Utah, having last raced in 2010, and this year has riders from six countries. The Jelly Belly squad is led by veteran American sprinter Fred Rodriguez, who won a record-setting fourth U.S. National Road Race championship, at the age of 39. The team also features Brad Huff, a former U.S. National Criterium Champion, and Christiaan Kriek, who won the Sprint Jersey at Redlands Bicycle Classic. This year the team has had podium finishes at a number of races, including San Dimas Stage Race, Sea Otter Classic and Nature Valley Grand Prix.

“We are excited to be part of this race and will contest every stage,” said Jelly Belly p/b Kenda director Danny Van Haute.

Luis Lemus stands atop the podium after winning Mexico's national championship road race.

Luis Lemus stands atop the podium after winning Mexico’s national championship road race June 23.

Jelly Belly p/b Kenda rider Luis Lemus won the Mexican national championship road race, taking his country’s crown for the second year in a row.

Lemus’ victory gives Jelly Belly p/b Kenda two national champions on its roster after Fred “Fast Freddie” Rodriguez won the U.S. national championship in May.

“This is a tremendous accomplishment for Luis and a great accolade for Jelly Belly p/b Kenda,” said team director Danny Van Haute.

Jelly Belly p/b Kenda riders saw the year’s hard work pay off in a big way at the Nature Valley Grand Prix.

Serghei Tvetcov grabbed the yellow jersey in the Stage 1 time trial, beating U.S. National Champion Tom Zirbel by four seconds. Tvetcov held onto the jersey for two more stages.

Sean Mazich posted the team’s other stage win at Nature Valley with a victory in the Cannon Falls road race, arguably the biggest win of his professional career. As he crossed the finish line after breaking away near the end of the finishing circuits, Mazich covered his face in his hands.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Mazich told reporters. “I did the work, and I just finally caught a break.”

Sean Mazich talks to reporters following his win at Cannon Falls.

Sean Mazich talks to reporters following his win at Cannon Falls.

The same could be said of the whole Jelly Belly squad.

“We’ve been on the verge of big results all year, and in this race it all came together,” team director Danny Van Haute said. “Everyone played a part in our success at this race.”

In the final GC, Freddie Rodriguez was seventh, Morgan Schmitt was 10th, Mazich 13th and Tvetcov 16th. Jelly Belly p/b Kenda finished second in the team GC, and Ricardo Van der Velde took home the blue jersey as the best sprinter. While they weren’t on their bikes, the riders visited Cannon Falls library for a talk with first- and second-graders.

Riders spent some time with youngsters at Cannon Falls library.

Riders spent some time with youngsters at Cannon Falls library.

Next up for the team is the tour of America’s Dairyland in Wisconsin, June 20-30.

“We can’t wait to get back in the hunt,” Van Haute said.