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May 9/07 6:05 am - No Men's Road Team at Pan Ams?

Posted by Editor on 05/9/07

No Men's Road Team at Pan Ams? - An Editorial

We have learned from a number of sources that the idea has been floated that maybe the Canadian Cycling Association should not send a men's road team at all to the Pan Am Road Championships, after the withdrawal of Symmetrics from the team.

Regular readers will be aware that Symmetrics withdrew all of their men to protest the pre-selection of Track riders (and subsequent naming of those riders to the road squad). See Daily News for stories and interviews:

May 3/07 10:45 pm EDT - Symmetrics Cycling Withdraws All Riders from Pan Am Championships

May 4/07 10:45 am EDT - CCA Responds to Symmetrics' Pan Am Withdrawal

May 4/07 1:30 pm EDT - Interview with Kevin Cunningham of Symmetrics Cycling

This has dropped the team to 5 riders (3 Elite and 2 Espoir) from 10, putting the squad at a severe disadvantage compared to the United States, Colombia, Brazil and other top contenders. In addition, top-ranked Canadians Svein Tuft (Elite) and Christian Meier (Espoir) will be missing and unable to add to their points totals.

Given the reduced likelihood of the Canadian team to perform well when missing the Symmetrics riders, the idea of saving funds when the CCA is already in a tight financial situation makes considerable sense.

However, it is unlikely to happen because some members of High Performance Committee will want to save face - cancelling the project would be tantamount to conceding victory to Symmetrics owner Kevin Cunningham.

On the other hand, while some insiders have admitted privately that the HPC made a mistake with the pre-selection process after announcing a Track Trials would be used to select riders, the HPC cannot realistically back down either on the pre-selections. To do so (even if they had time to run a full Track Trials now) would open them to potential legal action from athletes already named to the squad.

At this point, it appears that all we can do is wait and hope that by some miracle Canada pulls an upset victory in Venezuela.


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