Veteran sprinter Fred Rodriguez will lead UCI Continental Team Exergy’s 14-man roster during the National Racing Calendar (NRC) and National Criterium Calendar (NCC) in 2012. The team hired five new riders that includes Andres Alzate, Zack Davies, Logan Loader, Morgan Schmitt and Serghei Tvetcov.
"Our main focus will be the domestic calendars," said general manager Remi McManus. "We truly believe that we will be one of the top domestic teams in the United States. We will have a chance of winning at any race that we go to. We proved this year that we could compete at the highest level in the country and adding more depth gives us the edge we need to push us onto the top step on the podium."
Rodriguez joined the team for the first time at the TD Bank Philadelphia International Cycling Championships in June. He brought the team success during subsequent UCI sanctioned events at the Tour of Elk Grove and USA Pro Cycling Challenge.
"Fred is going to continue along a strong trajectory," McManus said. "He is a really good hearted and soft spoken guy, without the ego that sometimes comes with the notoriety or palmares that he has. He is with us for the best intentions. He loves to help the younger riders and influence them in the right ways. We are excited to have him back on board because he brings a great dynamic to our team."
Rodriguez will lead a team of returning riders Carlos Alzate, Kai Applequist, Ben Chaddock, Matt Cooke, Andres Diaz, Sam Johnson, Quinn Keogh, Kevin Mullervy and Conor Mullervy along with new riders Alzate, Davies, Loader, Schmitt and Tvetcov.
"We were delighted with the way our men raced in 2011, we just needed to add depth," McManus said. "The small roster [in 2011] left us short-staffed when races conflicted, but now we have the manpower to attack every race on our schedule."
"There’s no doubt that the split squad schedule will test our organization, but it will also add many more opportunities for success," he said. "Add to that more opportunities to reach out to the people and communities we visit, which is equally as important as the sporting aspect of our program."
Team Exergy will focus primarily on the domestic racing during NRC and NCC events with an up coming roster composed of both sprinters and stage racers. The team will begin its season at a sponsor education camp held from January 26-29 in Boise, Idaho. It will reunite for a winter training camp from February 11-19 in Ventura, California.
Some of the team’s highlighted events include stage races such as the Redlands Bicycle Classic, Tour of the Gila, Mt Hood Cycling Classic, Tour de Beauce, Nature Valley Grand Prix, Cascade Cycling Classic, Tour of Elk Grove, Tour of Utah and USA Pro Cycling Challenge.
"On the stage race side, with the addition of riders like Schmitt to the stage race team our strength is in numbers," McManus said. "We have Cooke, Diaz, and Schmitt to contest the overall GC and many others for stage victories."
The team will also contest an array of one-day road races and criteriums that include TD Bank Philadelphia International Cycling Challenge, Presbyterian Hospital Invitational, Speedweek, Air Force Cycling Classic, Exergy Twilight Criterium and Univest Grand Prix.