Credité Velo -Trek: Your local, Professional Development Bike Team!

10001340_644923692244257_1838261630_n20140409_163416Spring is here and it’s time to get the bikes out and put some air back in your tires. Around the Tri-State area there are many great bike trails, paths and routes for the casual and recreational biker but I feel that there isn’t much awareness of people and teams that take it to the next level and compete in pro-level races and circuits. I was in this same category of “bike naïveté” until I sat down with Dave Paquette and Dave Hartig who have exposed me to the sport of pro cycling. The two recently opened a cycling business which encompasses a professional development bike team based out of the Tri-States! Pedal on to learn more!

What exactly do you guys do?
What we do is two-fold. Part of our business is the networking side of things. If you’re not fully integrated into the cycling industry, there’s a lot of potential that you’re missing out on. So what we do is use the cycling team as the hub to connect people with and within our industry. The second gap we are trying to bridge is the rider gap. Our riders have been with local and regional teams and have dreams of being professional athletes. We are helping them develop the physical and professional attributes that they will need in order to market themselves at the highest level of our sport.

10173795_651761871560439_30494803_nWhat can you tell me about the team?
Dave Hartig and I [Dave Paquette] operate the sports management company that owns and operates the cycling team and are tasked with providing value for our partners and sponsors. The name of the team is Credité Velo -Trek. “Credité” is a Latin term that means “we believe”.  The role of the team is to develop our riders and win races. The company “Trek” who is part of our team name, is one of the largest cycling manufacturers in the world, and they are headquartered out of the Midwest in Waterloo, WI. We had the opportunity and partnered with them.

When did the company start?
The company formed in January 2014. We’ve been working on getting everything in place over the last 6 months. We started the company because we wanted to provide a sustainable business model to support our cycling team.

How big is the team?
This is our first season and we have three riders under contract.

raceWho coaches the team?
In cycling, the team coach is called the “director” and that guy is David Paquette.  Riders typically retain their own coaches who are essentially their trainers.  But the team director manages all aspects of the racing and logistics. The riders report to him.

What are both of your positions in the company?
Dave Hartig is the Business Director and David Paquette is the General Manager and Team Director. We are also both partners and shareholders in the company.

Are the three riders from the area?
We have one rider from the Madison, Wisconsin area and his name is Ross White. Another rider is from Ames, Iowa. His name is William Rekemeyer. The last rider, who is currently living in Austin, Texas, is Andrew Buntz.

Is the team based out of one particular area?
We consider ourselves based out of Dubuque.

IMG_0358What qualifies a rider to be part of the team?
Within the sport of cycling there are different categories of racing. If you were to compete in your first bike race you would be considered a “Category 5” racer. Through racing and successful results, you would work your way up from Category 5 to Category 4, 3, 2, and 1. Anyone who gets beyond Category 1 is considered “Professional.” To put it in perspective, there are about 71,000 licensed racers in the United States which includes about 160 professional men and 60 professional women.  So about 1 out of 300 have made the cut.  Those are tough odds.

What category are the riders on your team?
Our riders must be at least Category 1. The fundamental difference between a Category 1 rider and a professional rider is that the pro is contracted by a team who holds a professional team license.  We don’t currently hold that license but our riders compete against professional riders in the division.  In many aspects, we are a professional team but since we do not have a professional license we are considered professional development. 

20140409_164034How many races will you be competing in?
I’m not sure the exact count offhand but our first race was the evening of April 5th in Anniston, Alabama and we will be racing all the way through September.  We typically look for races every weekend of the season plus several multiple day races with a few weekends off for rest.

How many states do you cover?
Again, I’m not sure, but I know we will be in Alabama, North and South Carolina, Arkansas, Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin.

Where will the big final race be held?
A big race for our riders will be the National Championships. This year, they are actually close to here in Madison Wisconsin over the 4th of July weekend. Beyond that, we are seeking invitations to other highly respected races throughout the central United States. 

IMG_0518Where is the closest place to the Tri-State you’ll be riding?
There’s good potential that we will be racing in Galena, Illinois. Galena hosts a nice stage race (multiple days) that will bring a lot of regional exposure to our partners and sponsors.

How many teams are you competing against?
Depending on the race, there may be as many as 150-200 riders and there are typically 4-6 riders on a team. So call it 25 to 35 teams.

What makes a good rider?
It’s not just about athletic skill. There are tons of fast riders. You can have the most gifted rider out there but if they don’t have the right level of maturity and focus or just generally don’t have it together, it just isn’t going to work. We mentor and teach our riders the appropriate skills to succeed in this sport at the professional level. It takes a lot of persistence and the team provides an environment to support that.

Do the teams change through the circuit or do the same teams show up at every race?
It’s typically the same teams showing up.

Thank you very much for explaining what you guys do! Runde’s is proud to support a great business and local team.
We appreciate Runde’s support! We will be wearing the Runde logo on the back side of our bike shorts, as well as the side of our team jerseys. The back side of the shorts doesn’t sound like a prominent spot, but that is like THE billboard for other riders in the competition.

Stay tuned to as we will be posting team info, progress, news and results of Team Credité Velo Trek as they compete throughout the United States circuit!


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