The Jelly Belly Pro Cycling Team has added Kiel Reijnen, the top rider from its feeder squad, as a temporary stagiaire rider for two major end-of-the-season races.
Jelly Belly Team Manager Danny Van Haute said adding Reijnen, a 22 year-old rider on Team Waste Management, was the intended outcome of the first-year relationship between the two teams.
"We wanted to bring a deserving rider up from the amateur ranks through our relationship with Waste Management," Van Haute said. "We're happy to give Kiel this opportunity and I hope that he becomes a successful long-term addition to the team."
Reijnen will race for Jelly Belly at the USPRO Road Race Championship in Greenville, S.C., on Aug. 31, and also at the Tour of Missouri from Sept. 8-14. If the races go as expected, Reijnen will join the team for the 2009 season.
Reijnen had consistent and strong results throughout this season. He was the top amateur at the Nature Valley Grand Prix and finished 10th overall. He was sixth in the Under-23 national championship road race earlier this month. He also had a solid showing at BC Superweek, including finishing second in one stage on the way to fifth-place overall at the Tour de White Rock, the final three-day race of the series.
"The entire Waste Management team did well this year," said Barney King, who served as team director at most races. "Placing someone in the pro peloton proves their form is sound, and I'm thankful for our relationship with Jelly Belly."
King said that achieving the developmental team's goal of moving a rider to the professional ranks caps off a successful season.
"The guys responded well," he said. "We hope to do even better in 2009 for both the sponsors and the riders."
Reijnen is from Bainbridge Island, Washington State, and is an engineering student at the University of Colorado. He is coached by Gary Achterberg
(Additional editorial assistance provided by Susan Westemeyer.)