Eight of America's top female college cyclists will lineup at this week's Nature Valley Grand Prix in Minnesota, having been hand-picked to form the first Ryan Collegiate All-Star Team. The girls, who are completing various degrees including both medical and science fields, all contested last month's National Collegiate Cycling Championships in Kansas, aiding their selection for the squad.
"I think we'll form a team quickly because we're the only team we have," stated Jenny Bodine, who won the division 1 national criterium. "I think some of these races are going to be longer than what we're used to, so we'll have to encourage each other."
The rookie squad will face some stiff competition at the six stage race, commencing on Wednesday, with all of the major American women's teams taking part in the NRC Calendar event. Amongst those they will race is TEAm Lipton, Webcor Builders, Cheerwine, Colavita/Sutter Home and Arron's.
"Winning the criterium at Nationals was awesome, and taking second in the Omnium was great, but this is just the icing on the cake. It’s an excellent opportunity," added Bodine, who hopes to land a professional contract in the sport.
Ryan Collegiate All-Star Team roster: Erica Allar (Penn State), Jenny Bodine (George Washington), Devon Haskell (University of Chicago), Andrea Luebbe (Lehigh), Kristin McGrath (Fort Lewis College), and Susannah Nichols Pratt (University of New Hampshire).