Jennifer Valente (USA) of Sho-Air TWENTY20 Cycling showed her cycling versatility and strength at Pan American Track Cycling Championships last weekend. Valente was victorious in the scratch, omnium and points races while her trade team members Steph Roorda (CAN) had an impressive continental championships coming away with a gold medal from the madison, a silver in her first ever team sprint and a bronze in the points race. Sofia Arreola (MEX) earned silver team pursuit bronze in the madison.
“I felt well prepared coming in to the Pan Am Championships after a solid road block and a successful National Championships. This was my first competition outside of the U.S since the Rio Olympics and I am really happy to come away with three gold medals. Racing in South America is always tough and tests your ability to adapt to the races as they go. The week started off hard with a crash during the scratch race. Taking it one day at a time I finished out the week strong and I’m excited for the upcoming UCI World Cup season,” said Valente.
“It’s Jennifer Valente’s time to shine. Her transition back to track from a solid road racing block is nothing less than impressive, U.S Nationals saw her sweep gold and now a sweep at Pan American Championships. Her confidence is building and our team really believes in her ability to accomplish anything she wants to. It’s wonderful to see her continued rise. She is well prepared for the upcoming UCI Track World Cup season and is setting a solid foundation for the road to Tokyo 2020,” said Nicola Cranmer, General Manager Sho-Air TWENTY20 Cycling.
Roorda, who returned quickly to the track after captaining the Sho-Air TWENTY20 road team to a successful end of season, put her fitness from the road into her powerful track form. Sofia Arreola showed her renewed focus on track, resulting in a silver medal in the team pursuit, a bronze in the madison and a 6th place in the points race.
“My main focus for Pan Am’s was the Madison. My Canadian teammate and I had a short training camp in Milton to mainly work on the technical aspect of the race,” said Roorda. “Most of the training I did for this event was racing with Sho-Air TWENTY20 through the end of the summer! Up next I have some time off, which I am really looking forward to. Then we get into track World Cup season later this fall.”
“While the three nations of athletes race on their Sho-Air TWENTY20 trade team together, they push and inspire each other when racing for their respective nations, they are all fierce competitors and its great to see them race hard against each other but support each other off the bike,” added Cranmer.
The Pan American Continental Championships are a good test for athletes’ preparation heading into 2017-2018 UCI World Cup season. This year the UCI schedule consists of five World Cup events with a possible 6th being added culminating in late February with UCI Track World Championships in Appeldoorn, Netherlands much earlier than this year’s April World Championships.