Ambrose Delaney will represent Cape Breton this weekend when he vies for top spot at the international Killington Stage Race in Vermont, USA. Delaney, 50, a founding member of FrameWork Racing, will be among hundreds of pro and semi-pro cyclists from across North America when the three stage, three day mountainous challenge begins Saturday, May 28.
Two other rivaling cyclists in Nova Scotia – Hub Cycle’s Lorenzo Caterini and Scott Clark – will be at the start line hoping to thrash Delaney’s effort to return home with top honors.
All three Nova Scotian men recently competed in a tight race against each other at Bicycle Nova Scotia’s 2011 season opener hosted in the Annapolis Valley. Delaney, assisted by new team mate Chad Lennon, defeated the younger but talented Hub Cycle members to take second place in the top Elite A Division.
Delaney’s finish, just behind the wheels of first place winner Jamie Lamb of Halifax, who rides for the Garneau development team, was a sweet start in Nova Scotia’s cycling circuit for Delaney and new teammate Lennon who now wears the blue and gold FrameWork Racing jersey after several years with Hub Cycle of Truro. The race was also Delaney’s first since moving up the ranks this year into the toughest division open to Nova Scotia’s fastest cyclists.
Delaney is anticipating a tough but exciting race this weekend against a field of competitors many of whom he expects to be half his age.
“After racing in the elite division recently and placing second there, my confidence is definitely high,” Delaney said. “I’m an optimist. My endurance is good and I’ve been training a lot. I’m doing well and feeling pretty good so if all goes well, and I don’t get a flat or something, I hope to get within the top five or 10.”
He says experience and extensive hill training on Cape Breton’s mountains like the Cabot Trail, Barrachois Mountain and Frenchvale Mountain will give him an advantage over other racers when the mountains of Vermont have to be tackled during the “monster” race, Monday, May 30. The race is a legend among cycling enthusiasts.
Delaney spent the winter training indoors regularly with members of FrameWork Racing, before hitting the roads March 1 as snow was still flying to clock an average of 600 km a week in often unpleasant conditions.
Following the US event, Delaney will immediately travel north to prepare for his next UCI sanctioned race, the three-stage Charlevoix Grand Prix Cycliste, in Baie-Saint-Paul, Quebec from June 3 to 5 where hundreds of pro, semi-pro and amateur racers will compete.