2019 NWCCC Championships Recap

All photos courtesy of Joe Flannery (Portland State University). Thanks, Joe!

Weather (and Public Health) Bulletin

It was a wet, windy, cloudy, and sunny weekend of bike racing on the Palouse. As always, University of Idaho organized a great weekend of competition. Racers were treated to 30+ mph winds all day Saturday. A bonus, spring favorite blessed the road race: vigorous, sideways hail. Course anti-records were posted in the team time trial. Or perhaps this was the conference paying tribute to University of Idaho’s famed “Take-Your-Time Trial”? In any case, the crit went off with off without much notable weather, though there was some notable, inter-team chamois sharing. This was either a display of the strong bond between Northwest Collegiate teams or a public health concern—we’ll let you be the judge.

Our Esteemed Conference Director, Logan

Final Conference Standings

Men A Overall Podium

For the Men A, Jordan Chapman (University of Idaho) claimed the season overall with a podium finish in the road race. Christopher Clancy (Oregon State University) took the win in the criterium to secure second, and Justin Ziehnert (University of Oregon) followed to take third.

In the Men BDeclan Kelly (University of British Columbia) retained his overall lead to take the top spot. Clay Allred (University of Idaho) took second, and Nate Li (University of Washington) third.

And for the Men C, a podium finish in the criterium saw Johnny Esteban (Seattle University) on the top step with criterium winner Noah Libeskind (Whitman College) in second and Aiden McClinton (Western Washington University) in third.

Women A Overall Podium

In the Women A, Aileen Pannecoucke (University of Idaho) won both her races to the top the season standings with a 350-point lead. Gillian Bergmann (Oregon State University) bested Anna Johnson (Western Washington University) to claim second place.

For the Women B, Erika Francouer (Western Washington University) bested Fiona Majendie (University of British Columbia) for the overall victory. Rachel Thody (Western Washington University) held out for third.

Double victories in the Women C field helped May Constabel (University of British Columbia) to her season title, and Hannah Davis (University of Oregon) and Tenley Ong (University of Oregon) rounded out the podium in second and third. 

Women C Overall Podium

For the Pacific Northwest Women’s Series, NWCCC alum Margaux McBirney (Liquid Velo) claimed the leaders’s jersey generously provided by Castelli for the Women 1/2/3 category. Nicole Mohrbacher (Team Thrive p/b Kaiser Permanente) was awarded second, and Mckenna McKee (Grixsen) took third overall.

In the Women 4 category, Kristen Deibler (Liquid Velo) claimed first, with Carolyn Fealk (Team Thrive p/b Kaiser Permanente) in second followed by Rachel Wood (Team Thrive p/b Kaiser Permanente)

Charlotte Gamble (Liquid Velo) was the overall winner in the Women 5 field, followed by Kimberly Dowe (Team Kimberly)and Zoey Bailey (Corvallis Bicycle Collective). 

Pacific Northwest Women’s Series Overall 1/2/3 Podium

And finally, this season was notable in that our friendly neighbors to the north, University of British Columbia, swept the conference standings for the first time ever. We are very grateful that they have graciously agreed to share the secrets to their recruiting tactics, even though doing so might endanger their future hold on conference glory. Following in second was the University of Idaho and Western Washington University in third.

NWCCC Team Omnium Podium

Looking Forward

We would like to wish Gillian Bergmann, Christopher Clancy, Jordan Chapman, Keelan Ontiveros, and Justin Ziehnert the best of luck at Collegiate Road Nationals in Augusta, GA this weekend! Enjoy the other coast and those ITTs!

As always, we are extremely proud of our team captains, race directors, and each and every rider for making this conference go. And we couldn’t do it without the sponsors, parents, friends, and volunteers who sustain us! Thank you all for a great season, and best of luck to all of the teams with your recruiting efforts next fall!


By Rachel Thody


I am lucky I get to use that word pretty frequently. I even apply that term to my people outside of the cycling community. ‘Teammate’ is a very valuable name for one to be referred as. It is a special bond that surpasses the cozy and safe features of a friendship, or a romance, or a family member. There can be affection and support, but there will also be prickly days and tough love. It is a voluntary relationship forged on the drive to reach a common goal for an individual and for their team, and doing so by a common activity. I know for many others and myself, that goal is success and that activity is cycling.
Teammates aren’t your best friends, but they can be. They might not be the people you hang out with, but they can be. They are the people you get through workouts with. They are the people that are also tired and cold and still holding out in a storm on a particularly rainy day in the saddle. They are the person that puts their hand on your back and pushes you up that hill. They are the people who stand next to you at the starting line of a race, thinking about roughly the same thing. Strategizing, planning re-fueling points, marking up riders to keep an eye on, and visualizing the last 200m of the race. They are the person you might be angry and jealous at as they effortlessly get through an interval or climb while you’ve drained yourself and yielded no progress.  They will definitely be the person provoking you to go harder when you’re tired and want to give up. You might even snap at them. I recommend you don’t. They are the people you collapse on the ground with after the race, either feeling elated or like there’s a vice clamping your guts. They understand when and why you’re upset or on top of the world. They are the only people that know what it’s like to hop on a bike, shoulder a barbell, start a timer, and go for it. A good day for me may be the worst day ever for my teammate, and we are able to understand each other in that same moment.
Collegiate racing is a whole other animal within competitive sports. Firstly, students already balance a mass of responsibilities. Classes (some can be terribly difficult), homework, jobs, studying abroad, taking advantage of internships, taking care of family, being a good friend, maintaining a relationship, taking care of our own selves, the list goes on. Cycling is one of the most time consuming sports, especially the further up you move in the ranks. Category C racers tackle about 25 miles, while Category A races about 60-80. Hence the time spent on training rides ranges from a single hour to over 4 hours. Not to mention the time it takes to stretch after a ride, clean the bike, and keep up with proper maintenance. What do you do in 4 hours? Some riders even supplement their cycling with gym workouts and cross training. Having people that live that similar lifestyle, who triage their lives on a daily basis and prioritize this sport is sometimes all you need as motivation to go on that long ride, or get the most out of an hour of homework time.

I guess what it comes down to is this: competitive cyclists are truly crazy, and it’s good to have people around that share that same type of crazy. Who else is willing to ride 100+ miles (for fun), throw down anaerobic sprint repeats, crank out a 6am weight lifting session, and bundle up when the weather is gnarly? Or satisfied with making personal sacrifices to attain sought out results in a race or goal? How about waking up in the morning with an itch to turn their cranks up a mountain and then listen to the mechanical purr of the hub spin on a decent?
The people that understand even when the gears on my bike stop turning, the gears in my mind continue to spin; thinking about training, upcoming races, and results. Seeing familiar faces, weary with sleep after being brutally awoken for a morning session, or bright-eyed and laughing because it’s a warm August day and the sun never felt so delicious, is a reminder that we want the same things. The days we sat on the floor of a homestay or in a rental van, glad we had someone to share that space with.

I can’t emphasize how grateful I am for this particular and weird relationship that I share with quite a few people in this incredible sport.  My teammates.

Thank you for pacing me during intervals that one Thursday.
Thank you for holding my helmet when I was blundering to zip my kit because I was nervous.
Thank you for agreeing to take the long way back home.
Thank you for riding with me.

Rachel Thody is a current member of the NWCCC and captain of the Western Washington University Cycling Team

Meet Cassie

​I got to talk to Cassie Cardoza (Dickerson) about how the women she races with inspire her, what its like to be a female bike mechanic in a male dominated industry, and why it is important to her that her husband also rides and races. Oh, and why Slim Jims are the best gas station ride food option.

It all started when Cassie’s mom asked Cassie to do a triathlon with her. Running and swimming? Nah. She was not into it. But bikes. Cassie was hooked on bikes. Cassie raced for two teams during her time at the NWCCC – CWU and MSU. Now living in Tulsa, Cassie teaches K-5 music, is a part time bike mechanic at City Cycles in Jenks, OK, is a full time dog mom to 2 Australian Shepherds, and races for Team Isocentric. Check out our entire conversation in the podcast below!

BTW, Cassie is an amazing cello player! Check out her Soundcloud here!

↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓ Podcast Episode ↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓


​We are now on Itunes! Check us out, rate us, and give us a review!

We also have Instagram accounts!

Thanks for listening!



Mentioned In This Episode:

Vegan Cyclist – Managing Cycling and Relationships
​Team Isocentric
Ayla Aymond and Alexa McCorkle
Dillon Caldwell
Kimberly Martin Pettit
CWU Cycling
MSU Cycling

Meet Kimberley

​I got to talk with Kimberly Johnson – Seattle Pacific University Cycling/NWCCC Alumnus – about how she started the SPU Cycling Team and about her time racing on the Kowalski’s Collegiate All-Stars Team and as a domestic elite racer!

Many collegiate riders dream of someday racing at a domestic elite level. Some collegiate riders are lucky enough to get the break that takes them in that direction. Kimberley was one of those riders, racing 5 years as a domestic elite racer on various teams including Kowalski’s Collegiate All-Stars Team, Birchwood Cycling, Naked Women’s Racing, and Cloud Racing p/b Ride to Recover.

In my recent interview with Kimberley we talked about her experience getting into racing as a Junior on the team B.Y.R.D.S, racing as a domestic elite racer, recovering from a major injury, and the advice she would give her younger racer self.

​Podcast Note: After some research, it does not look like the Collegiate All Star Program still exists. Currently, USAC has a Academic All Star Program, that can be found here.

↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓ Podcast Episode ↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓

We are now on Itunes! Check us out, rate us, and give us a review!

We also have Instagram accounts!

Thanks for listening!



​Mentioned In This Episode:

Meet Sophie

Sophie Andrews of U of O and I talk about collegiate racing, moving up to the 1/2s, the female athlete triad, and eating disorders. 

A few weeks ago I was on Instagram taking a look at those Insta stories, when I came across Sophie’s story. Over the course of a few posts, Sophie shared with the world her relationship with food and how disorder eating impacted her as an athlete. I immediately messaged her to thank her for sharing her story and ask if she would be willing to talk about it more in an interview. I am so happy she said yes! And that I can bring you this episode of Women of the NWCCC. There is a lot of stigma around disorder eating and the the relationship between female athletes and food. There are also a lot of misunderstandings out there about what it means to be healthy as an athlete. In this episode, Sophie, and myself, share our stories with disorder eating and how our relationship with food impacted us as athletes.

We both want to encourage others to keep this conversation going. We want other women to know that they are not alone. We want to be here for you if you want to talk with us because we both feel that stories like ours are not shared or talked about enough. And we want to let the world know that while eating disorders were a part of our lives, they do not define who we are women or who we are as athletes.

In the light of sharing experiences, I also wanted share the stories of two female athletes who experienced eating disorders that inspired me: Dotsie Bausch and Jessie Diggins. Dotsie Bausch is well known in the cycling world for winning silver at the 2012 London Olympics in the team pursuit. Jessie Diggins just won gold in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in the cross country team sprint. You can hear Dotsie’s interview with Rich Roll here. You can read Jessie’s essay here.

Sophie and I wanted to let you all know that if any of you ever wanted to talk to either of us about your journey with disorder eating, we are here to listen and provide what we can. *Please remember we are not licensed medical professionals*

I hope you enjoy the episode!


Meet Anna, Kate, and Rachel!

I got to chat with the ladies of Western Washington University.
And what did we talk about? Well bikes of course! Mountain bikes, road bikes, women on bikes. We talked about it all. Take a listen!

Honorable Mentions (links):
NICA Oregon
NICA Washington
​OBRA 21 and Under License
​Inga Thompson Foundation

Bellingham Ride Groups (links):
Bellingham Women’s Road Cycling
Bellingham Women’s Mountain Biking​
Tuesday Night rides (hot laps/Chuckanut-Colony Throw Down/refinery)
WWU Cycling (public facebook page)

Meet Becca

Our podcast is back, kicking it off with Whitman Cycling alumnus Becca Mellema!
I met Becca for the first time this year as she made her way back to racing through the Pacific Northwest Women’s Series. In her interview we talked about how she got into racing bikes, the women that kept her going, collegiate nationals, and fish primes!

After the interview, Becca sent me the race report she wrote up after winning her first women’s A crit in 2015 (in her first crit as an A!). It’s a great read and a perfect insight into the thought processes we have during races. Check it out here. Side note: the UBC rider she mentions in her report – Margot Clyne, who now races for Twenty20! We all start somewhere. And great riders often start here in collegiate.

Post interview note from Becca: “Also, I think we went off topic before I could tell you, but I wanted to let you know that I raced with Dessie and Mackenzie Stanley as a women’s A (for both the team and at nationals.) I feel really bad that I wasn’t able to mention Mackenzie!
Mackenzie was a close friend who really shaped who I was on the bike, so I would be remiss if I didn’t mention her!”

First Week Is Coming!

Bike racers (and bike teams):

I received the following in my email the other day:

The sender says that the OSU beavers are setting themselves up to scare away all of the local competition. I thought that was weird because OSU is like 100s of miles away from EWU. Maybe it is because OSU can basically swim to all of the events.

Either way, that picture is pretty convincing to me.

Logan sent out rosters last week so it is time to register. Please pre-register. It will save time at registration. Plus, all you have to do is pickup numbers, hand in waivers, go make new friends. Everyone likes that right?

Or, if you enjoy standing in the cold and rain negotiating how you are going to pay and get those waivers signed, that option is also available. We do not prefer that option. But it is there.

Head on over to here, submit your form, and let’s do some bike racing.

Ghost of Conference Director’s past