Skip navigation

Category Archives: Featured

Jelly Belly Candy Company continues its sponsorship of the Jelly Belly Cycling Team for a 16th season. The world’s longest-running title sponsorship in professional cycling is looking forward to another strong season with several exciting additions to the team roster. Tire company Maxxis is also returning as presenting sponsor.

Four-time U.S. National Champion Fred Rodriguez returns to race his final season, wrapping up a storied career that included appearances in all three Grand Tours and netted a stage win in the 2004 Giro d’Italia.

Australian rider Lachlan Morton comes to the team from WorldTour squad Garmin-Sharp, joining his former teammate and strongman Jacob Rathe, who returns to Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis for a third season. Lachlan will be riding alongside his brother Angus Morton, an all-around cyclist. Also new to the 2015 roster are Americans Gavin Mannion (from 5 Hour Energy) and Joshua Berry, the 2014 Tour de Beauce King of the Mountains jersey winner, formerly with Team SmartStop. Moldovan riders Nicolae Tanovichii and Alex Braico round out the list of new riders.

In addition to Rodriguez and Rathe, the team is happy to bring back the pedal power of Americans Jonathan Freter, Steve Fischer, Sean Mazich and Andrew Sjogren.

The team bids farewell to Serghei Tvetcov, who recently signed with Pro Continental squad Androni Giocattoli-Venezuela. Tvetcov enjoyed tremendous success in three seasons with Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis and though he had offers to ride in Europe much sooner, he felt another year in the U.S. would serve him better. With a repeat win at the Cascade Cycling Classic and a spot on the final podium at the 2014 US Pro Challenge, it appears he made a smart decision.

Several new sponsors have signed on for 2015: Full Speed Ahead bicycle components and bottle cages, apparel sponsor Squadra, Microshift drivetrain and Doc’s Skincare chamois cream and natural skin products. The team is pleased to welcome back bicycle sponsor Argon 18, Speedplay pedals, saddle sponsor ISM, Rudy Project helmets and eyewear, WD-40 Bike, Inno Advanced Car Racks, CatEye bicycle electronics and Kurt Kinetic trainers.

The ambitious 2015 race program will include numerous NRC events in the U.S. The team hopes to draw invitations from the UCI North American races, including the Amgen Tour of California, the U.S. Pro Cycling Challenge, the Tour of Utah and the Tour of Alberta.

Team director Danny Van Haute said he’s fielding a squad that will measure up to — and probably exceed — the success of 2014.

With veterans leading the way and gifted young riders eager to produce results, Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis is on the verge of what should be one of our strongest seasons yet,” Van Haute said. “I’m excited to see what this talented group of guys can show the cycling world.”

Lots to celebrate at the USA Pro Challenge! Go Serghei!






Check out the new time trial helmets from our sponsor Rudy Project!





Steve Fisher shows off the MVP belt.

Steve Fisher shows off the MVP belt.

Six Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis riders traveled to Minneapolis for the North Star Bicycle Fest last week. This was my first trip to Minnesota and it did not disappoint. We enjoyed great weather for most of the week and awesome fans at every stage.

Things started off with a short road bike only time trial on Wednesday morning. We put our Fast Freddie Apparel skinsuits to good use and hammered out the 5 miles along the Mississippi River. Jonathan was our top finisher and in the hunt for the best young rider jersey.

Wednesday evening’s criterium in St. Paul featured a tight course with lots of spectators. The cornering clearance provided by our Speedplay pedals allowed us to stay smooth and on the gas throughout the course.

On Thursday we headed to Cannon Falls for a 95 mile road race. Wind was blowing hard and the race was on from the gun despite a short gravel section. I managed to get away and win the first KOH sprint, but I was back in the pack shortly after. The wind wasn’t letting up and the peloton was shredded in the crosswinds shortly after. We had four Jelly Belly riders in the second group that dangled one minute back from the leaders for most of the day. The strong winds and strong riders ahead proved to be stronger than us today, but plenty of opportunities for us remained.

We started Friday’s criterium determined to ride as a team, and we got together at the front of the race almost immediately. Optum took control of the race and let a five-rider breakaway go up the road while we sat behind them waiting for our opportunity in the final sprint. Unfortunately the breakaway stuck until the end, but we still wanted to give Sean the best possible opportunity in the field sprint. I took the front for the final lap with Freddie and Sean in tow. Freddie and I lit up the last lap to deliver Sean to 7th.

Saturday’s Menomonie road race was 101 miles long and featured several steep KOH climbs. Attacks started right from the gun, but it was one of those days where it seemed like everyone wanted to be in the breakaway. When the break did finally go Freddie made it and they worked well together to establish a 4 minute lead. With around 30 miles left to race the rain started coming down hard and Freddie’s break looked like it had a good chance of making it to the line. Freddie and his comrades reached the finishing circuits with 3 minutes in hand still and fought it out for win. Freddie finished 4th.

The final stage took us to Stillwater for a criterium that would feature 23 laps up the infamous Chilkoot hill. The hill may be short, but it is incredibly steep and whittled the field down with each lap. I stayed near the front up the climb every lap and I was feeling great each time up. I ended up a little farther back than I would have liked during the final lap, but I passed as many riders as I could in the last sprint up the hill, earning 6th place on the stage and moving up to 23rd overall.

I was happy to close out the week with another top 10 result for the team. I was also awarded our Most Valuable Rider belt, which is a new tradition that we have started at Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis.

Special thanks this week to Nick, Ahme, Tom and Stacy for hosting us. Also thanks to Bobby for keeping our bikes working well all week.



Jacob Rathe in the chase group.

Jacob Rathe in the chase group.

Ian Burnett takes the front.

Ian Burnett takes the lead.


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.