Two Penn State Lehigh Valley Cyclists Qualify for the Olympics
Two former Penn State Lehigh Valley cyclists, Bobby Lea and Michael Friedman, have qualified for the U.S. Olympic Cycling Team and will participate in the Men's Madison at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China. The cycling events of the 2008 Olympic Games will be held August 9-23. According to the posted schedule, the Men's Madison is Tuesday, August 19 at the Laoshan Velodrome. Lea will also compete in the points race on August 16 at the Laoshan Velodrome.
The Madison offers the perfect combination of teamwork, sprinting, and endurance. Run by teams of two, only one rider of the pair is active in the race at any given point. All riders start at the same time, and the winning team covers the most laps in the time allotted. As the active rider races, the other rests as he continues to circle at a slower speed. Riders can take over from each other with a handslap or by gripping hands and literally slinging the other back into the race. That gives the new rider a burst of speed and motion from the other as he exits the active role.
Under the mentoring of Penn State Cycling Coach Jim Young, both Penn State Lehigh Valley cyclists have represented their sport in national and international competitions. Penn State Lehigh Valley has been a center of cycling for the University for many years. The campus is home to the Penn State University Cycling Team.