Article and photos by Mary Alice Murphy

On Wednesday morning, April 11, 2018, students at Bayard Elementary got to meet two professional cyclists from Rally Cycling. Evan Huffman, last year's Tour of the Gila overall winner in the General Classification for men, and his team member Kyle Murphy talked to the students and answered some of their questions.

Murphy said: "Why do we do it? We love riding bikes." He also gave the students some safety tips and tricks: 
1) Always wear your helmets
2) Have reflectors and lights on your bikes, especially, if you ride at night.
3) Always ride on the right side of the road.

He reminded the students that if they want to be professional cyclists, they must eat healthy, get lots of sleep and drink lots of water. "Stick with the whole foods, not junk food. It's important for us to stay in shape for riding competitively."

Huffman said: "We're excited for the race next week. The Tour of the Gila is a five-day, five-stage race. We have to eat well and sleep well to recover for the next day. The last day is almost 100 miles with big hills. The first day is 90 miles; the second day 78 miles; the third day is about 15 miles of time trials; and the fourth day on Saturday, is the Downtown Criterium, which takes an hour to an hour-and-a-half in a circle on the streets of Silver City. Our team won last year and we're excited to be back."

Murphy cautioned the students to "always know what you're capable of. Don't do dangerous things. You'll improve with practice. Get your parents to take you to dirt roads, where you are safest, with fewer vehicles, and you can go faster."

Huffman said when riding on a street, students and all cyclists should stay to the right of the solid white stripe or in a bike lane. Sometimes, smaller kids can ride on a sidewalk, but it's not the safest. It's safer to have separation from cars in a bike lane.

To a question about how many riders, Huffman said about 400 professional and amateur cyclists will be competing. "We have about 120 in the professional category. Seventeen teams, with seven people per team have registered."

When a student asked what happens if a bicycle breaks, Huffman said: "Sometimes our bikes break, and we have to fix them. It can be frustrating."

Another student asked how long he had been a professional. "I have been a pro since 2013. It takes a lot of hard work." Murphy said he had been a pro for four years.

A student asked why they wore tight clothes. Murphy said: "We wear tight clothes, which help us go faster. They are made of a fabric that wicks away moisture, so we don't get all sweaty."

When a student asked how much they made, they kind of chuckled. "We are paid enough to stay healthy, and come here and race," Huffman said. "We are not paid like the NFL or NBA."

Murphy asked how many students rode their bikes to school. A few raised their hands. "When I was going to school," he said, "I rode my bike because it was faster than riding the school bus. I could sleep later."

A student asked how heavy the bicycles were and Huffman said their racing bikes weight about 15-16 pounds. He invited the student, Jared Morales, to pick up the bicycle, which he did and held it up with one hand.

To a question about how they kept their feet on the pedals, Murphy showed them the clips on the shoes that connect to the pedal. "It's easy to pop your foot out. But not when you start out. You have to learn how."

He also answered the question about whether the bicycles were made of aluminum.

"No, these bicycles have carbon fiber frames. They are really lightweight and durable."

Each cyclist hopped on his bicycle and took one turn around the gym. Afterward, students gathered around them to learn more before heading back to class.

Live from Silver City

Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates

Welcome to Three Times Weekly Updates! You will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.
You can unsubscribe anytime. We never share or rent your email to anyone.

Fire Alerts

Editor's Note

Until I can find another reporter, I'm having trouble keeping up, so I began a new series called News Briefs with the date they are posted. They are of interest to readers, but I don't have the time to interview and write stories about the person or issue, so I'm just telling you the bits of information, so you don't miss out.

Anybody interested in a part-time freelance reporter job with the Beat, give me a shout at editor@grantcountybeat.com. You need good spelling and grammar and can write a decent report without any of your opinion in the article. Opinion belongs on the Editorial page.

Those new to providing news releases to the Beat are asked to please check out submission guidelines at http://www.grantcountybeat.com/about/submissions They are for your information to make life easier on the readers, as well as the editor.

Welcome to our new version of classified ads.  We invite you our readers to post your own classifieds, which are available for viewing 24/7 and are very reasonable in price, because you do all the work yourselves. A recent classified for a van brought a sale within two days.

We have received complaints about large images blocking parts of other articles. If you encounter this problem, click on the title of the article you want to read and it will take you to that article's page, which shows only that article without any intruders. It's a software problem, not easily fixable, other than showing fewer articles per summary page. If you are a frequent visitor, you might not mind fewer articles per page, but if you only come once in a while, you likely want to see more articles to browse. Write me at editor@grantcountybeat.com to let me know your feelings on this issue. 

Because you are an esteemed member of The Grant County Beat readership, be assured that we at the Beat continue to do everything we can to be in full compliance with GDPR and pertinent US law, so that the information you have chosen to give to us cannot be compromised. 

The Beat continues to bring you new columnists.Recent additions  include one about end of life options, Compassionate Care.

The Beat has a column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.

The Beat totally appreciates its readers and subscribers!  


All articles and photos indicated by a byline are copyrighted to the author or photographer. You may not use any information found within the articles without asking permission AND giving attribution to the source. Photos can be requested and may incur a nominal fee for use personally or commercially.

Don't forget to tell advertisers that you saw their ad on the Beat.

Feel free to notify editor@grantcountybeat.com, if you notice any problems on the site. Your convenience is my desire for the Beat.

If you subscribe to the Join GCB Three Times Weekly Updates option on the left side of this page, you will be subscribed to email notifications with links to recently posted articles.

It's really easy to check to see if there's a classified ad. Just click on Classifieds in the blue menu and the page will open letting you know if there is a classified ad. Remember that your buying classified ads gives you a wide readership, as well as supporting the Beat. Post YOURS for quick results!

Note that if an article does not have a byline, it was sent to the Beat and written by someone not affiliated with the Beat

Consider the Beat your DAILY newspaper for up-to-date information about Grant County. It's at your fingertips! One Click to Local News.

Thanks for your support for and your readership of Grant County's online news source—www.grantcountybeat.com