August 20, 2007 (Minneapolis, Min.) — This weekend the first year Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast pro cycling team led by Jonas Carney fulfilled promise shown all season. Under Carney’s guidance, all seven riders dominated the last laps of Sunday’s rain-soaked USPRO Criterium Championship at Downer’s Grove, with Canadian Martin Gilbert taking both the stage win and the championship.
Newcomer and latest edition to the team, Canadian sprinter Keven Lacombe led Gilbert to the line and the win, but teammates Dave McCook, himself a former USPRO Criterium winner and serious contender, plus Jonny Sundt, Dominique Perras, Ryan Roth, Dan Bowman and Reid Mumford all played their part, effectively shutting out competition from Health Net p/b Maxxis’ Kirk O’Bee and others.
“We’re thrilled with not only the win but the way our squad worked together and controlled a field of this caliber — in some of the worst rain conditions this season,” says performance director Jonas Carney. “After our performance last weekend in Elk Grove where McCook was only just beaten by Freddie Rodriguez we knew we had a great shot at this.”
Carney, a four-time winner, twice as an amateur and twice as a pro in 1997 and 2004, prepped the first year Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast riders well, discussing strategy and pre-riding the course to highlight the critical importance of position in the latter stages of the race.
“I know from experience that this race comes down to tremendous stamina and more importantly position. Our guys played it cool until the last laps of the race and then lined up to take the front and control the race to the line. That was our game plan all along and I’m pleased it paid off.”
Next up for the team is the USPRO Time Trial and Road Race Championships September 1-2 in a busy September of racing followed by international racing in Mexico at Vuelta a Chihuahua October 7-14.
“The team’s win this weekend is tremendous validation,” says John Kelly, title sponsor and president, Kelly Benefit Strategies. “Their performance embodies the values of our organization. Our guys worked together as a team, each one doing his part to ensure that we had the best chance to prevail. Today Martin Gilbert made their hard work count and delivered our first big win!”
The Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast team is managed out of Minneapolis by Circuit Global Sport Management.
About Kelly Benefit Strategies (www.kellybenefitstrategies.com) is a group insurance broker and consultant that specialize in healthcare, and is a division of Kelly & Associates Insurance Group, Inc, headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland. KBS serves thousands of employers ranging in size from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies and is committed to bringing its customers affordable group benefits through innovative benefit design, management, and administration.
About Medifast (www.medifastdiet.com) Medifast (NYSE: MED) is the leading easy-to-use, clinically proven meal replacement program.
Medifast has been recommended by thousands of physicians and used by over one million customers. Its programs have been proven effective through studies by researchers from major university teaching hospitals. The company sells its products and programs direct to consumer via the web and national call centers as well as through its national network of physicians and clinics, and Take Shape for Life program. Medifast was incorporated in 1980 and is headquartered in Owings Mills, Maryland.
About Circuit Global Sports Management (www.circuitsport.com) Minneapolis-based CGSM facilitates strategic alliances between corporate partners and professional cycling initiatives. Previous high-profile clients include Cadillac, Red Bull, Panasonic, DKNY, Dollar Rent a Car, Jeep, Timberland, and the State of Minnesota.