The new versus the old in this year’s Tolsdorf Trike Challenge
West Chester, PA – July 31, 2017 – As far as Mac Neilon is concerned, there’s no question as to who will win this year’s Tolsdorf Trike Challenge. “We will win,” he said when asked about his chances of winning their first attempt. Apparently, he doesn’t want to reveal his strategy because when asked how he plans on winning the same three words were spoken “We will win.” Neilon is the president of Penn Office Supplies and captain of the company’s entry, Team P.O.S.
The Tolsdorf Trike Challenge is a wildly popular event in the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic which takes place Saturday, August 12.
Mixing equal measures of craziness, competition and good-natured fun, the Tolsdorf Trike Challenge is a series of tag-team eliminations that finds adults (folks 18 and over) giving their all on tricycles. One would think that Penn Office Supplies’ lack of trike-racing experience would be a distinct disadvantage, but history proves otherwise. Over the race’s history no team has been able to repeat a victory.
In the first year, the win went to the Trike Challenge sponsor, Tolsdorf Oil Lube Express. In 2015, Dave’s Auto Repair won the day, with Kelly’s Sports taking the win on their third try in 2016. All three are committed to competing again this year, facing a line-up that currently includes Pillar Real Estate Advisors, Brandywine Valley Heating and A/C, John Serock Catering, Team Cowbell, Fame Fire Company and Benchmark Federal Credit Union, the event’s title sponsor.
Even more teams are expected to sign up before deadline on Friday, August 11 at 10:00 A.M. Once again, a portion of the proceeds are going to be donated to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
The Tolsdorf Trike Challenge is open to all businesses, organizations and groups of five of which one person must be of the opposite sex who feel they have the right stuff. Besides the glory that comes with triumph, the winning team will have their name engraved on the prestigious Trike Challenge Trophy. In addition, each team member will enjoy a VIP experience at the exclusive Crit Club where they will enjoy a lavish buffet and beverages as they celebrate their victory.
Unsurprisingly, Mac Neilon’s conviction of his team’s certain victory will not go unchallenged. The team to beat may well be last year’s winner, Kelly’s Sports. “We’ve competed every year since it first began,” says Steven Kelly, VP and Jack-of-all-Trades at the sports equipment center, “and we’ve been working up our mojo all year long.”
The first year, Kelly really didn’t know what he was getting into. “I thought we were going to be riding Big Wheels,” he says, and was surprised when he saw the size of the trikes. Just as surprising was the fact that victory does not necessarily go to the fastest riders. “Speed is just one element,” reveals Mark Yoder, President of the Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce, organizer of the Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic, “But it’s really more about how well the riders hand off the trike to their teammates.”
Chris Tolsdorf, president of Tolsdorf Oil Lube Express, agrees, saying, “a good hand-off is one that doesn’t involve swinging the trike into the shins of your teammate.”
Easier said than done. “Those things are really heavy,” said Kelly. “And once they got moving, it was hard to slow them down because there are no brakes, which makes the exchange a real challenge.”
Last year’s victory was directly attributable to Kelly’s team having perfected their hand-off strategy where each rider gets off the bike on the left side and rotates the trike, while the next rider stands on the right, ready to immediately jump on and move out. “That trophy is going nowhere,” boasted Kelly, “so people beware, to which Neilon replied with an air of dry certitude, “We will win.”
Trike racing is just one of many attractions that will make up West Chester’s popular day of racing action and family-friendly events. For complete details and registration, go to http://greaterwestchester.com/events/featured-events/wcbikerace/trike-challenge/.
Benchmark Twilight Cycling Classic is a day of fun and excitement for the entire family beginning at 3:30pm with the West Chester Dental Arts Kids’ Race. Sign up your children to participate in a series of age-determined sprints for children between 3 to 10. At 4:00pm the Kids’ Zone and Community Festival open with a great choice of family-friendly activities. Next up, 4:30pm finds adult-sized tricycles taking over Gay Street for the Tolsdorf Trike Challenge, a double-elimination adult tag-team tricycle relay race. The excitement continues to build, first with the Rothman Institute Amateur Criterium at 5:45pm (Trials at 8:00am at Bayard Rustin High School), followed by the Brumbaugh Wealth Management Pro Women’s Criterium at 6:45pm, culminating at 8pm with the Iron Hill Pro Men’s Criterium. #WCBikeRace