January 2018 Newsletter!

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Hello Devo Nation!

In 2018, one of Devo’s New Year’s Resolutions is to start up our monthly newsletters once again! Read on for a recap of Devo’s 2017 season, and a summary of exciting things to look forward to in 2018 by our very own, Chad Cheeney.

Happy New Year! 2018 is looking so good for Durango Devo, and I couldn’t be more excited for the new season. Here are a few things to look forward to with Devo in 2018…

  • A new Director! I get to work with Levi Kurlander, our new Executive Director and a Devo alum from some of the first years of Devo in the mid-2000s. I coached him from U14 to U19, to FLC for the Skyhawk Cycling Team. Now he’s my boss! So cool, and what a story.

  • The races that are coming to town! In 2017, Purgatory made a turn towards summer lift accesses for bikes and hired Hogan Koesis, a legendary bike park designer, to create new trails at Purg. Wow! Because of this, we can look forward to a ProXCT, ProGRT, some Keith Darner events like a weekend bike festival at Purg, collegiate racing at Purg, the Scott Enduro Cup and more. We already have the IHBC, Alien Run, Escalante Days, Durango Double and the Zia Town Series, so MTB racing in Durango is going to be huge in 2018!

  • The Coaches! Now that I’m a Dad and don’t have tons of time to hang with my friends, my homies, and my people, I end up hanging with my workmates most often. Luckily, they also happen to be my friends. So dreamy! This is what creates the fun culture at Devo that we know and love.

There is more stoke for 2018 but I do not want to present you a novel, so let me move on to my good 2017 feelings. Here’s what I’ll remember most of 2017…

  • Push Bike Coaching! We all know how cute it is, and man is it great being a leader for this group. This past season saw 14 different Push Bike Coaches. When you compare this to the early days of the Push Bike groups in 2013, there were only a couple groups! Amy H. and I led them all. This growth and stoke to lead these young whippersnappers tell me things are looking up in the world.

  • The Special Needs Jr Devo group! We hired Coach Matt, an FLC cycling member, who really wanted to lead a group. We put him with the SN group and each week he’d come into my office and tell me all the rad happenings at practice. My heart melted when he informed me that he has special needs and had a rough upbringing. Leading this group has been his calling.
  • Our former riders turning into Coaches! And darn good ones. I was blown away when I tagged along with the Cyclocross team led by alum and coach, Stephan Davoust. He was so engaging, so positive, and spread out his attention to each of the riders during the ride. Got that mushy feeling again! We have a bunch of former riders turned coaches – too many to name with 99 locals Coaching for us in 2017. Wow!
  • The Devo Explorers! As it turns out, some of my bike explorer friends from before the days of Devo are now the amazing Coaches of Devo Explorers, leading the charge towards the future. This makes me so proud to see the amazing trips they plan and the adventures they facilitate. It’s amazing! I don’t know anywhere in the world where leaders of their skill and expertise take kids into the wild. Below is an awesome picture of an Explorers trip to Bears Ears!

  • Champions! We had so much racing success last year and our alumni are turning out to be the best in the business. Look at the results from last year on the road and MTB and you’ll see Durango at the top, with most being former Devo riders. They are not only fast, but are also having fun and spreading the love cycling while giving back to the sport in their own special way. I think 2018 will see more of these top results. Recently we had Howard Grotts and Christopher Blevins race for Team USA at the MTB World Championships. Also, Sepp Kuss signed Devo’s first World Tour level contract with Lotto NL Jumbo, whaaaaaaat! He’ll be moving to Spain in the spring to start his first season of European road racing.
  • Getting hired back! I was so excited to start back up with Devo last year around this time. For the previous 2.5 years, I had been working with Bend Endurance Academy in Bend OR, coaching MTB and Cyclocross. I got the chance to really dive into another program and help them grow. I learned so much about myself and the strengths I can bring to a program like Devo. I hope to keep it fun and interesting for years to come.

Again, I could go on. But I won’t! You’ve got college bowl game parties to get to, right? Or more like a sweet MTB ride up to High Point! Thanks for reading and see you in 2018. I’ll leave you with some more key info for 2018

  • DRP pre-season program starts Jan 24. It’s an 8-week program for U14/U19 (and younger with coach’s consent) involving some fun preparation for the spring riding and racing season. Mondays are ride or outside activity, Tuesdays Catacombs Cross Fit class and Thursdays swim practice with the Durango Swim Club. A balanced all-around fitness attack with emphasis on promoting healthy body, mind, and spirit.

  • The NICA Colorado State Champs are in Durango next October!
  • Flyers will be splitting into two groups based on age and skill and will be hitting up some sweet Enduro races, like never before.
  • Devo is sending its first team of riders to USAC Cyclocross Nationals next week in Reno. Wish them luck!

Have a safe and happy 2018!