Meet the Team

Monday, April 6, 2015

Spring Series and Navy Yard

The podium count continued at the Spring Series two weeks ago when Beth Bonilla took a strong solo break win in the Women's open race.  On a super windy day, Beth kept the pressure on with repeated attacks.  Finally, she launched an attack and realized that she was off the front solo.

She held the gap and finished several minutes in front of the field for a fantastic win!

Kristin and Maria raced the Women's 3/4 that same day and finished 6th and 7th in a tough field that saw a late break for the win to Action Wheels rider Maureen Gribb!  :)

Maria lined up for the Women's Cat 4 race at the Navy Yard this past weekend.  With winds gusting at upwards of 30 miles an hour, the race was one that saw most fields shatter and riders suffer as they faced a wall-like wind on several portions of the course.  Maria kept herself safely at the front of the field and managed to finish strong in 5th place!

Meredith, Beth, and Sarah stepped up to race in the super stacked Women's open field.  With three riders from Zimmer Capital, three from H&H Racing, a handful of EPS riders, and the likes of Laura Van Gilder, it was destined to be a really tough race.  With constant attacks and counter attacks, the ladies played it smart and tried to find the move that might go away from the field.  But, it was not to be and the field of 31 dwindled down to a sprint field of about 16 riders.


Thanks to Bob Wellmon for some awesome shots during the Navy Yard race... the three green amigas appreciate it!  :)

Sarah finished 11th, with Meredith in 14th and Beth in 15th.  With a field that strong and conditions that tough, we are really happy with our first real team debut in 2015!  We had an absolute blast together and can't wait to take on another Spring Series race next weekend.

Borda is currently sitting 2nd in the Cat 3/4 series, so we've got some podiums to find!

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Spring Series Begins

OK - so this post is over a week late... the South Jersey Spring Series started two weekends ago.  It was supposed to start earlier than that, but Winter has been drunk lately and refuses to leave the party.  I mean, seriously, Winter... just go home and sleep it off.  We'll see you in a few months and won't even discuss that you tried to grab Summer's.... ahh, never mind.

For the team, our local Spring Series started with a bang!

Borda took the line for the 3/4 race on March 15th.  Just over a 6 mile circuit, the course may be flat (highway overpasses do NOT count as "hills), the famed south Jersey headwind is ALWAYS hanging about to try to knock you off your bike at the most inopportune moment.

It was a blustery day, but Borda managed to comfortably cover all of the attacks and conserve a lot of energy.  When it came down to the finish, she launched a strong sprint to bring home the team's first podium of 2015 with a 2nd place finish!

Borda and the Polish Pocket Rocket (Maria Dziembowska) lined up this weekend for the 3/4 race and again, things went swimmingly well for the Wasabi Warriors.  An early race solo break from Breigh on the Action Wheels Women's Team put the rest of the field on the defensive.  With some help, Borda was able to fight through the headwinds to catch her and solidify a small break group.  The six of them came to the line together and sprinted through a cross headwind.  Breigh showed her pure power by taking the win.  Borda crossed the line in 4th and Maria finished 8th on the day!

Borda then bundled herself back up, braved the ever increasing headwinds, and raced with the Choppah in the Open women's field.

A VERY early break occurred - about 4 minutes into the race, as we crested the "hill" of the first highway overpass!  The break comprised of the Choppah, Diane from Action Wheels, Lauren from H and H Racing, and Kristie from QCW.  A truly solid break with all of the teams represented, the four very quickly opened up a comfortable gap on the field.

Working together beautifully through the remaining laps, Choppah came to the line 2nd behind Lauren, securing the 2nd podium finish for the team in 2015!

As the field came to the line, Borda showed that she is "Strong Like Bull," by launching a powerful sprint.  As she comes to the line, head to head with Meg, the question is... will she, or won't she?!?

It was a SUPER close finish for the field sprint and 5th place, but Borda's powerful legs and awesome bike throw secured her 5th place in the Open field and put both CAWES riders in the money!  WOOT!

To say it was a good day of racing would be an understatement.  The best part is, we're together and having a blast.

A huge thank you and shout out to Matt Warner, who has turned this from a handful of small criterium races where we ladies lined up with the Master's Men, to a month long series where we have our own fields, a purse equal to that of the men, and absolutely gorgeous roads for racing.  Thank you, Matt... for your constant support of Women's racing in our region!

Watch for the Ladies in Lavender at next week's Spring Series races, and at the Navy Yard Criterium in South Philadelphia on April 4th.  Bring your cowbell, wear your purple and green, and cheer us on as we tackle the start of race season!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Long Long Winter

So, to say it's been a long winter would be putting it mildly.  Nothing has been mild about this winter.  From the low temps to the inches of snow... we've had our work cut out for us this year.  But, if we just look on the bright side of things... it's nearing it's end now!

Still, we've had lots and lots of this...

And, not nearly enough of this...

But, then... this happened.  Oh, Daylight Savings Time,  how we do love thee!
The sun came out, the roads dried up (well, mostly), and we got out for a ride with some of our favorite MAMBOs.  

Spring is coming.  Yes, indeed, it is.  And, the ladies of CAWES are ready for it.  Bring on the warm!!

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!