January 15, 2008 (Minneapolis, Min) –Â The Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medifast pro cycling program that came from nowhere two years ago but closed last season among the top few domestic teams in North America, today announced a name change and a revised lineup for the coming 2009 season.
The team will race as Kelly Benefit Strategies (KBS) pro cycling thanks to an increased commitment and partnership from current title sponsor John Kelly of Kelly Benefit Strategies. Medifast will stay involved with the 2009 program but not as co-title sponsor. The program sees an increased level of involvement from sponsor Contour Technology, manufacturer of electronic muscle stimulation technology for pro athletes.
“We’re eager to get rolling with the new season,” says title sponsor and president Kelly Benefit Strategies, John Kelly. “Our program continues to go from strength to strength and we’re extremely confident knowing that a very full race calendar and some key additions to our athlete line up will make the team even more competitive going than last year.”
The team’s other partners and sponsors, including Trek (as Gary Fisher brand), SRAM and Bontrager all return with the 2009 program as do Jonas Carney, performance director and Ken Mills, performance manager. Carney is currently finalizing a race schedule that will see the program increase the number of international races in 2009.
The 2009 Kelly Benefit Strategies (KBS) roster includes Andrew Bajadali, Dan Bowman, Alex Candelario, Jonny Sundt, Reid Mumford, Jake Keogh, Clay Murfet and David Veilleux — all returning from last season plus seven new additions. The KBS squad picks up three former Symmetrics teammates in Ryan Anderson, Zach Bell, Jake Erker. Anderson, one of Canada’s top U23 riders in 2007 and a member of the Canadian National Team, won the Kelowna Stage Race Criterium in 2008. Bell, who finished 7th in last year’s Olympic Points Race, is a Pan Am Championship Gold Medalist and recently won the World Cup Scratch Race in Cali, Columbia. Erker has won stages of the Tour de la Guadeloupe, the Tour de Hokkaido, and the Vuelta a El Salvador and last season finished third in the Canadian National Road Race Championships.
Also joining the KBS line up for 2009 is Neil Shirley and Scott Zwizanski. Shirley finished 3rd at the USPRO Road Race Championship in 2007 and also won the KOM at the Philadelphia Invitational. Zwizanski moves from Bissell where in 2008 he came first in the NRC Bank of America Wilmington Grand Prix and first in the Santa Cruz Classic Criterium. Filling out the roster are U23 standouts Shane Kline and Cheyne Hoag. Â Kline, a multiple junior national champion on the track, joins the team from LSV/Kelly Benefit Strategies elite amateur team. Hoag joins from Sakonnet Technology U25 where he took first in the Road Race and the Overall at the Tour de Millersburg.
“We have an incredible lineup going into the new season,” says performance director, Jonas Carney. “From new athletes to returning riders, we have a great mix of guys who, working as a team, are capable of winning any race they start. We’ve added experienced pro’s that will improve our team’s climbing, time trialing, and sprinting capabilities. We’ve also added some incredible young talent that will surprise a lot of people. It’s going to be a terrific year of racing from our program.”Â “
The KBS squad will convene its first camp in Winter Park, Colorado later January 21-25 and then start training proper at the team’s February training camp in San Antonio, Texas next month.
“We’re looking at an exceptionally strong 2009 program,” says Charles Aaron, managing director of CGSM. “Powerful committed sponsors at the helm and a ninety five percent return of all existing partners. We’re proud to have the kind of backing, involvement and passion that both John Kelly of Kelly Benefit Strategies and all of our partners bring to the table. With an increased racing budget you can expect to see more international racing from our squad and a lot of podiums. It’s going to be an unstoppable green machine.”
The Kelly Benefit Strategies team is managed out of Minneapolis by Circuit Global Sports Management.
Kelly Benefit Strategies 2009 Team Roster
– Ryan Anderson
– Andrew Bajadali
– Zach Bell
– Dan Bowman
– Alex Candelario
– Jake Erker
– Cheyne Hoag
– Jake Keough
– Shane Kline
– Reid Mumford
– Clay Murfet
– Neil Shirley
– Jonny Sundt
– David Veilleux
– Scott Zwizanski