Raim strikes gold with gamble on first Israeli pro team

At the end of the 2015 season, 23-year-old Estonian Mihkel Raim faced a major career decision. He was riding for a French amateur team and had just finished 15th in the U23 road race at the Richmond World Championships. He could stay with the familiar amateur team that had a solid race program in the heart of the sport, or he could gamble on turning professional with the Cycling Academy, an up-and-coming Continental team from Israel, a country not exactly well known for its cycling pedigree.

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Growing up in Missoula, Montana, Pat competed in his first bike race in 1985 at Flathead Lake. He studied English and journalism at the University of Oregon and has covered North American cycling extensively since 2009, as well as racing and teams in Europe and South America. Pat currently lives in the US outside of Portland, Oregon, with his imaginary dog Rusty.