Meet the Team

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Why I Am Specialized!

My love affair with Specialized Bikes began in 2008 when I brought home my first real racing bike.  His name was Falco.  

He was a beautiful boy... an S-Works Tarmac in blue with world champ racing stripes.  I was in love.  He was the first bike that actually fit me.  Falco took me to the top of the podium a few times and was with me the first time I raced up the Manayunk Wall in the Liberty Classic in 2009.

After joining CAWES, I was able to get my second Specialized S-Works bike.  With his amazing green and gold Team Highroad paint scheme, the aptly named Bernie, was another amazing ride.  With increasingly better carbon, Bernie was a small step up from Falco in terms of stiffness and response.  He was fast.  He was nimble.  He was a great bike.

And then... I got a "girl's" bike.

Mari was my first S-Works Amira.  I admit that I was nervous about going with a "girl's" bike.  I'd always ridden standard "men's" frames and this was going to be quite a change.  But, once I got used to the feel of the geometry of the frame, I found that I simply didn't feel right on the Tarmac anymore.  I had found the perfect bike for me in the Amira.  The geometry allowed me to change my center of gravity and I found that zipping through corners in fast professional crits was easier on this bike than Bernie or Falco.  I was hooked.  Again.

But, then it happened.  I fell head over heels in love with Lozen.  A feisty girl with a wickedly gorgeous paint scheme, Lozen is my 2015 S-Works Amira.

With a few hours under our belts together, I realized on today's ride that this bike is THE best bike I have ever owned or ridden.  She is super light - I didn't think bikes could get much lighter than Mari, but I was wrong.  And, this is without her race wheels!  Seriously, I'm afraid I'll get air time when I put my Zipp wheels on her for racing.

This bike is incredibly stiff - which means that she is ultra responsive to pressure on the pedals.  When you stomp down, this bike shoots out from underneath you!

I am so excited to get her out in a race situation to see how she handles fast cornering, but I have no doubt that she will continue to wow me!

If you're in the market for a new bike, I can't say enough about awesome Specialized bikes.  I feel lucky to have been on a Specialized sponsored team since I began racing in 2007.  I fully expect to ride a Specialized until I'm old and gray.  Well, ok... older and grayer!

Thanks for creating amazing bikes, Specialized!

Maybe my next post will gush about your awesome shoes and helmets!  ;)

Injury Prevention Workshop

Friday night found the ladies of CAWES hanging out at an Injury Prevention Workshop hosted by our new sponsor Specialized Physical Therapy in Cherry Hill.  The team, with about 15 of our closest cycling friends gathered for an evening discussing the most common overuse related injuries in cycling and how to avoid them.

 Meredith, Kristin, Beth, Paul, Sarah, Matt, and Maria

 We were so happy that so many of our cycling friends joined us for the event!

Paul and Matt shared techniques with us for stretching and strengthening and we were able to give them some info about the dynamics of cycling and the bike.  Not only was it a truly informative event, it was so cool to share knowledge with one another!  

It was a great night and a wonderful chance to share one of our fantastic sponsors with fellow cyclists who can definitely benefit from their knowledge and skills.

A huge thank you goes out to Matt and Paul for hosting the event.  I don't know about everyone else, but I've already started incorporating some of the stretches and strengthening exercises into my daily routine!

So, if you find yourself in need of a little help with a painful joint or muscle, a kink in the neck, or a knee that keeps hollering at you... give these guys a call.  They can get you back on track and moving more efficiently than ever!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Final 2015 Roster Announcement!!

It's been a crazy end to the 2014 year!

The team has gone through quite a few changes as we've closed in on 2015... some of our Wasabi Warriors have decided to "retire" from the sport of cycling in order to take up Adventure Racing, Rock Climbing, Knitting, and Underwater Basket Weaving.  We're very sad to say goodbye to them, but we know that sometimes it's just time to hang up the cleats.  We send them off with tons and tons of love and best wishes...and the knowledge that there's always a bike seat in the CAWES training center with their name on it!  ;)

As 2015 approaches, we are excited to announce the official 2015 race team roster.

Returning to the team as the premiere diesel engine and wearer of the most stylish party outfits imaginable... Mrs-soon-to-be-Dr. Kristin Borda!

Straight off her tour of the best parties at Lee-McRae College, forever the youngest member of the CAWES squad and our resident track and dirt specialist... Kati Lawrence!  

Responsible for the worst joke telling this side of the Mississippi (but, at least she can spell Mississippi), and the team aficionado of all things pig (and chicken?) related... Sarah Iepson!

And now for the new additions...

You've already met one of them, and the others will get their official blog introductions soon enough... just hold your horses.

Straight from eating more peanut butter in a month than most small European countries manage in a full year, with more power than she knows what to do with (not to worry, we'll help with that!), Beth Bonilla!

Slowly trying to take over Choppah's position as resident cat lady on the team (just kidding, she only has one... for now), we welcome the petite and punchy Polish powerhouse, Maria Dziembowska!

And last, but certainly not least... our top-secret (well, not anymore) tactician and the blonde bombshell, Meredith Ehn!

We are looking forward to an amazing 2015 year!  We are super grateful to our new and returning sponsors for making this year a reality...

Ambient Group

See you on the road!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2014


We're super excited to announce the first new addition to the 2015 roster....

Meredith Ehn!

Meredith joins CAWES after guest riding with the team at the Tour of America's Dairylands in 2014. Formerly of Team FinKraft, Meredith's awesome tactical smarts, super powerful legs, and all around wicked cool demeanor make her a great fit for the Wasabi Warrior roster.

So, here's what you need to know about our newest addition:

Originally from Frenchtown, NJ... Meredith spent some time living up in Albany, NY before moving down to the Philadelphia area.  She remains settled in NJ and is the team's only true "Jersey Girl!"

Not only is Meredith a fantastic bike handler on the road and in the dirt, she is currently a full-time medical student working towards becoming a doctor of Osteopathic Medicine.  When she's not studying or riding her butt off, she's a licensed Physical Therapist.  (Isn't that handy for a bunch of accident prone cyclists!?!)

A few more things to know:

Favorite Quote: "Happiness is only real when shared." - Christopher McCandless
One thing most likely found in her race bag: black socks
Favorite Race: Iron Hill Twilight Criterium
Racing Speciality: Crits
Favorite Color: Blue
Pre-Race Tradition: Chowing down (she's quite adept at making 2nd breakfast....after 1st breakfast has been consumed, of course)
#1 goal for the 2015 race season: Kick some major bootie!!

Welcome to the team, Meredith!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Farewell, Little D!

It is with a truly sad heart that we announce that Little D is moving on to a new team for 2015.

Since moving to Minneapolis last fall, she's been kicking butt and taking names as a Wasabi Warrior.  We were so happy to race with her this year at ToAD and watch her take so many podium spots that we started to lose count.  It's been a great year for Dr. Dre and we knew that a team out in her new hometown would scoop her up as soon as they realized what we already know... Little D is one RAD racer and teammate.

Little D really is one of the most amazing teammates anyone could ask for.  She is perpetually smiling and her positive attitude and encouragement makes racing far more fun and even a bit easier (even when your legs are getting ripped off).  We know that we were unbelievably lucky to have had the chance to race alongside this 100% class-act, and we're super glad that she's found another team that she can call home.

We love you, Little D!!!  And, we'll miss you!  Good luck, lovely lady!  xoxoxo

Monday, September 22, 2014

Year End Report

Good morning... Choppah here with your 2014 year end report!

It was an exciting year for the team and we're super happy about how it went and how things are already shaping up for 2015.

The team brought home 17 podium finishes this year, including 4 wins, 1 NJ State Master's Championship Jersey, and a bit of cash for the kitty.

We raced in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, New York, Maryland, Virginia, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Illinois.

We competed in two major Professional Race Series events: The Tour of America's Dairyland and the Intelligentsia Cup Prairie State Cycling Series.

We supported the Special Olympics Event and Junior's Day Out in Sykesville, Maryland: an event that we truly love and feel strongly about.  Even with a steady drizzle all day, the event was a real success and we had a GREAT time!!

We helped our favorite bike shop - Twenty 20 - and it's awesome crew pull off the wicked awesome Charm City Cross event on a perfectly warm September weekend (it was WAY too hot for 'cross, but, what can you do?!?!).

We hope that we made our amazing sponsors proud... because we can't possibly do it without all of their support!
- We can't stay hydrated without CeraSport!
- Our bikes would look and sound like creaky old messes if it weren't for ProGold!
- We wouldn't have bikes AT ALL if it weren't for Specialized!  And, they protect our feets-ies and our noggins, too!
- Our new kits were amazing thanks to VERGE Sport - and after chatting with Mike Magur at Charm City this weekend, we're even more excited to help give feedback on the newest iteration of their clothing line!!
- Those awesome new VERGE chamois are kept lubed and comfy with Crotchguard!
- Rudy Project keeps our eyeballs safe and protected.  Plus, we look HOT in those things!
- Keeping the rubber side down is so easy with Maxxis tires, and we just love the way they roll!
- Dr. George - Chiropractor extraordinaire, keeps us on the straight and narrow!
- Extreme Endurance keeps our legs fresh and fast!
- Teaism - our favorite fueling station... and those cookies... oooooh, the cookies!!
- Beyer Kia in Alexandria and Falls Church - the top secret Kia to our success!  Plus, they have hamsters driving their cars... which also come in lime green.  How cool is THAT?!?!

We're so lucky to have such fantastic sponsors to work with!  We hope that we can share the love for these awesome folks with all of you - visit their sites, their businesses, try the product.  We promise you... you can't go wrong!!

Thanks for an awesome 2014!  We can't wait for the next year to begin!

Monday, September 1, 2014

It's Labor Day!

Yep... and we all know what that means...

Summer is officially coming to an end.

School is back in session, the weather is getting cooler (haha, just kidding - Indian Summer approacheth!), Christmas decorations are beginning to appear in stores (What the HECK?!?!), and the road racing season draws slowly to a close.

All in all... it was a pretty good year for the ladies of CAWES!

Despite some injury setbacks for Badger, BadKat, and BChan, the team nonetheless managed to find the podium at several races, race hard in quite a few pro level events, and even bring home a State Championship jersey!

We're not QUITE done yet, of course... the start of September also brings us into some of our favorite events of the year - the Special Olympics/Junior's Day Out event in Sykesville, MD, and helping out our favorite local shop Twenty 20 to make sure that Charm City Cross goes off smoothly!

A few of the ladies will be clipping in to race some cross - others have a few more road races in the mix - even more are already preparing for off-season training, which apparently includes something about eating funnel cake...

We are ever grateful to our amazing sponsors for helping to make this year possible.  Without their support, and the awesome support of our friends and families, we wouldn't be able to enjoy the time that we share on our bikes and together as a team.

We can't wait to do it all again next year!  And, don't worry - we'll have some special announcements about 2015 soon enough!  :)