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14th Mar 2019Posted in: Blog 0
Rookie Week Recap
Blake reflects on the start of his cycling career and Rookie Week.

As Coach Anderson described it, my introduction to cycling was a “trial by fire”. After going out on a forest loop through Bloomington for my first ride with the team, I knew right away that I enjoyed moving my legs in circles while spending time with the guys. My next couple of rides consisted of two 80-mile rides and a century in Panama City Beach during Winter Break. As you could probably imagine, riding a century on a terribly misfit bike for my 3rd ride with the team was a learning experience, but it was the moment that I decided that I wanted to fully commit to Beta Cycling and pursue a Little 500 championship.

Although I have been a short distance, explosive athlete all my life, I have really enjoyed the endurance training that cycling requires and the mental toughness that I have developed because of it. The current members of the team- Colten Renier (’19), Jonathan Jaggard (’19), Kyle Howe (’21), and Sam Bradley (’21) – have done a great job of keeping me accountable for following the training program throughout the last 2 months while we have been grinding through long distance “base” rides on the trainers. We are all extremely excited to have started the “build” phase of our training program where we develop fast-twitch muscles through shorter intense rides.

As rookie week comes to an end, I believe it has been a great learning experience for the 3 rookies on the team: Kyle, Sam, and me, Blake Castetter (’21). Unlike previous years, this year has consisted of several practice races which has given us the opportunity to develop race strategy and become comfortable in different race situations. It has also given us the chance to develop a competitive mindset where we are going to win the race any way possible, whether it’s 30 laps or 200 laps. Having Colten on Riders Council is a huge advantage for us because he can watch our races and point out areas that we can improve. Also, the fact that we have 3 rookies fighting for 2 spots on the race day squad has pushed each of us to work harder and prove that we deserve that spot.

Great coaching and solid senior leadership has put us in a position to be successful this year. The team is extremely grateful for the support that we have received this year, and we want to say thank you for making what we do as Beta Cycling possible. We can’t wait to make you all proud this April.

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Blake Castetter

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