Back to Back Podiums

Snagged an age group single speed win by 2/10ths of a second at The Divide in Manton. 

I pulled him back from a long ways out and we traded spots heading into town.  I took the corner to the outside and took the W at the line. 

These are valuable points for the single speed gravel series. 

I am especially stoked coming off of a second-place age group finish at the cereal city triathlon the day before. 

Stay tune for or to shore race results. 


Getting Moving

It’s Spring, almost summer. On any given weekend there are numerous WSI athletes out there riding, running, swimming, or all of the above. These past couple of weekends have proven to be busy with athletes scattered across Michigan competing in multiple events.


On May 30th, Matt Gaffner competed in the Conquer the Village Mountain Bike Race in the beautiful Traverse City Michigan. Sporting his WSI riding gear and the typical goofy face, he took 6th in his AG for the sport class.

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Also competing that weekend were Matt Wright, Charles Elder, Danny Wolin and Katie Bridges at the Seahorse Triathlon. Katie participated in the swim portion only, working on her swimming strategy and coming off of an injury. Danny took part in the duathlon, Matt in the aqua bike and Charles in the Olympic distance Triathlon. Each member had a different reason for being out there, a different goal, and each had accomplished results they were looking for.


“Last year was the first year I raced Seahorse as a duathlon – previously I had done the tri relay.  I won last year and this year I wanted to mainly beat my time from last year.  Work on the transition times and have a solid11270569_1635177213363635_3758899166960960634_o ride.  There were two guys who were fast runners and from the gun, they took off.  I know better than to try and keep up with fast runners so I just ran my own race and tried to keep them from getting too far ahead.  I was about 1.30 behind them in the transition but caught the first one at the 10K bike mark and the second one about 5k later.  I figured I would try and build as much as a buffer as I could by the second run.  I saw the second runner coming in as I was leaving transition and figured it would be a matter of time before he came around – but he was going to have to work for it.  the second run started slow – first half mile always sucks.  I kept going and asked if anyone was behind me but he never was there.  As I came out of the last 11254348_1635177450030278_1271516000780014868_nstretch of woods and he was not there, I figured I had it.  I ended up winning by a minute and a half.  I spoke with him afterwards and he said he was surprised how tricky the run was and also said since he could not see me it was hard to catch me.  So, in the end I beat my time from last year and won again – really an added bonus.  We had some great support on the course from WSI family members which was great.  All in all a good day out.”



“It was a perfect day for racing at Coldbrook park in Kalamazoo county yesterday. Morning temperature was in the mid 50s and the high was forecasted low 70s. I raced in the sprint men Aquabike division. Mine was the last swim wave and it started at 8:33. Couldn’t seem to get comfortable in the water during this race. I kept having to slow down and catch my breath. I still managed to swim 500 yards in less than 10 minutes. After a quick transition, I was on the bike and pushing hard. This course offered a lot of hills but I maintained 19.5 MPH for th11393695_1635177330030290_8884154103022618693_oe 20 K ride. I finished in just under an hour, winning my division. Unfortunately I had no competition to compare myself to.”


“Choosing the Olympic distance for this event was a way to prepare for my upcoming Half Ironman in July. The swim was going to be the most challenging for me and it was my first time racing in a wetsuit. Transitions were quick and smooth even with the wetsuit addition. With the swim out of the way I let me brain and body do what it knew best: ride. The ride was to be expected with an average of 19.4 mph. The run was challenging, but this course always is. I had a lot of WSI support along the way. I finished in 3:10:11.”



Sodus River Time Trial

warm upFour of our racers hit Southwest Michigan for the Sodus River Time Trial this morning and all did quite well.

Danny Wolin: This is the first time I have done this TT and the course was great. Well paved roads in SW MI. It was quite a bit windier than we all expected so the way out was tough but I felt I kept a good pace-right around 24. The way back was certainly better with a side tailwind so the speed was higher.  Officially average was 25.31-a bit lower than the Garmin indicated-25.7. Good enough for 6th on the day-only a half mile an hour between 1st and 6th. While not a great TT result I am happy with the pace I held given the wind especially on the way back. A bit of work to do before the state TT in a month but heading in the right direction.

danny and josh

Josh Haas: What a great mid-season time trial. Easy to find, very well-run and the course was great. We arrived to much more wind than the weatherman led us to believe but luckily it was a headwind at the start. I was able to keep it above 20mph going out, then punched it as much as possible the way back and was avg’ing between 25-27mph which was just plain fun. In the end, my official average was only 23.1mph but my Garmin data showed a slightly longer course ridden which made my average 23.6mph. I ended up 4th in CAT 5 and with my lack of training this busy Spring, I am quite happy with the result. I plan to work hard over the next 6 weeks preparing for the State Time Trial.

kevinKevin Bridges: Sodus River TT was my first time trial. I have done many triathlons, which is basically a time trial sandwiched between a swim and a run. This race was a 20km out and back; we had a head wind on the way out and a tail wind coming back in. I averaged 23 mph and finished 5th in cat. 5.

This race was flat, fast, and run very well. I would like to thank Sodus Fire Chief Bill Long for opening up the restrooms at the Fire Station for us to use.

scottScott Bridges: The 2015 Sodus River Time Trial was my first ever time trial. It was a great race to be my first. The atmosphere was great, with no chaos or confusion of the good organized race made it simple to suffer. I won the junior category, putting a lot of points between my rivals and I in the Michigan challenge series.

Tour de Frankenmuth

Several WSI riders participated in Saturday’s Tour de Frankenmuth. Overall, it sounds like it was a great day for racing, and a beautiful place to race! Check out the riders’ full reports below:


photo 3The Tour de Frankenmuth kicks off the 2015 road racing season. This 40 mile race through the countryside around the Bavarian village of Frankenmuth has been a staple in the Michigan road racing scene for many, many years. Consisting of two laps of a 20 mile circuit, there are no real hills or technical sections that could be used tactically to form a breakaway.

The Cat 4 race had a field of around 40 riders, with some food team representation, so the potential certainly was there for team tactics in the race. However, true to Cat 4 form, all of the 5 breakaway attempts were covered by the peloton, including the one I launched with 6 miles to go. Prior to that, the race had been relatively uneventful. Except for the crash about 30 miles in. A rider to the left and one bike ahead looked back over his right shoulder and while his eyes were off the road in front of him, his wheel touched the one in front and he went down rather hard. Only one or two others went down. Remember to keep eyes ahead during the race.
With about 2 miles to go, and just prior to the penultimate turn, I maneuvered to the front for safety, and led the peloton up the final hill before the final turn to the finish. With speeds accelerating to almost 40 mph, it was difficult to hang on.

The only redeeming fact was that the difference between first and forty-first was less than one minute.
Pack finish within a minute of the winner with no crashes or mechanicals? I’ll take it.


photo 2The 2015 Tour de Frankenmuth was my first road race. I did the junior category; a 20-mile flat race around the countryside of Frankenmuth. After last year’s attempt at a road race, and the expert advice of my good teammates Devin and Danny, I knew how to race a bike, finally. With ten miles to go I first started to work, supporting an ally I established earlier, fighting cross winds, and battling head winds. With 2k to go there were three of us. With some fresh legs and a good plan I photo 4was confident I was going to win, and with less than 1k, I attacked, and won. Big thanks to Devin Winton for teaching me all the tricks to winning a race, and to Bill at Team Active for making sure my race machine was ready.



The race started out slow, around 19 mph, I started thinking I might have a good chance with these guys, until 5 miles in when a solo break away took off. The rest of the day was spent chasing this guy around rural Frankenmuth. At 32 miles, 8 miles to go, I dropped off the back of a small chase group and finished 14th. I finished better than last year, but there is still room to improve. Maybe a new set of wheels would help.



This race is flat, beautiful, and gives you a chance to see all kinds of different photo 1racers. Despite being windy, this race deserves some credit: it’s well set-up and has a huge amount of support from volunteers and police officers. I don’t take racing as seriously as the rest of my family but can have a lot of fun just by seeing any smiling WSI faces. This was my first official road race (before trying in road racing I tried mountain biking, triathlon, and duathlon). There’s really not another feeling that compares to it being you, your bike, and smooth road. Seriously, you don’t feel road like this in Calhoun County. This race was worth waking up at 4:30 and riding in a car (even if you’re like me and you can’t sleep in cars or you’re the driver of the car). The community seemed open to the racers. Being the only 15-16 year old girl, it’s not difficult to guess where I ended up finishing, and where I intend to race next year.

A HUGE Day for Charity

It’s another year racing for a great team (WSI Cycling) that not only encourages raising money for charity, it’s required. We have the freedom to choose the charity and the riding event. Instead of picking a race, I again chose to ride long hours and many miles in search of birds. It’s an endurance challenge with a twist and has worked well to bring in big money for a great cause.

Birding By Bike

Similar to last year, I began at 2am and the first bird was yet again, the threatened Henslow’s Sparrow. What a fortunate thing as this bird is very scarce. After that I was quickly off. Unfortunately, it was only around 40 degrees so I had to start in cold weather gear which limited my hearing. Everyone asks why I start at 2am. The answer is not only for Owls, but many other birds that call at night and rarely if at all during the day. I tallied Sedge Wren, Barred Owl, Great-horned Owl, Marsh Wren, Sora, Virginia Rail both cuckoos and many more before even a twinkle of light began to show. Luckily the riding was very uneventful with only one car seen, no flats and dogs that couldn’t catch me. Check out the recording below to hear an Eastern Whip-poor-whil calling along Otis Lake.

Cross Bike Ready for 100+ Miles, 2am

I do need to give a shout out to the fine folks at Team Active Cycling & Fitness who worked with me to get the gearing on my cross bike just perfect for this big ride. I absolutely love this bike and it performed flawlessly. At 4:57am, the morning chorus began to rise quickly as twilight began to erase the stars over Otis Audubon Sanctuary. By 5:45am, I was back on the bike after a float in the Kayak (which was miserably cold in darkness). I was headed for my first spot where some of my crew would join me for a long walk. The morning was beginning to warm which I had really been waiting for. Along with the warm air, the birds were darn good and we had an enjoyable walk.

Birding Perry Trust Property

From there, I began running and gunning to spots throughout Yankee Springs ticking birds off left and right. I was missing some that should have been around but I was adding unexpected species throughout. At the Paul Henry Thornapple Trail in Middleville, I found nesting Prothonotary Warblers and after lunch began my longer journeys of the day heading Northeast. The highlight of the day was a very unexpected Common Gallinule as well as a Short-billed Dowitcher at a spot quite a ways north of Hastings. My dad was with me and our excitement could hardly be contained.

Prothonotary Warbler

I continued through the miles, had some leg issues around 75 miles in but used some nutrition to get back on track before ending up at Pierce Cedar Creek where not only my crew but my family met up with me to grill brats. Boy did they taste good and my body enjoyed the extra sodium! Another unexpected highlight was a female Northern Bobwhite which all of us were excited to see and hear.

Grill Out

I pedaled the last 10 miles home and ended the day with 102.5 miles ridden, three miles hiked, one mile kayaked and some wicked helmet head after 19hrs! I tallied a staggering 121 species; a Barry County big day record (five more than my record-setting number last year). I am so thankful for safe roads, an amazing crew that supported me throughout the day and great followers that donated to a great cause. I would like to especially thank my dad for providing the best sag support a cyclist could ever hope for. On top of that, he donated twice to the cause. Just awesome…

Route & Helmet Head

At this point we have raised over $1400 for the Barry County YMCA’s Play 60 program this summer. Because of your generosity, kids in the Hastings community are able to attend these programs and activities completely FREE where they can learn fun new ways to play outside every day. How cool is that!!! It’s not too late, please visit to read more about this program and to donate via credit/debit card.

Barry YMCA