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By: Zdenko Kahlina
Edmonton Master Cycling Club (EMCC) celebrates!
In the spirit of the 25th Anniversary Celebration of the Edmonton Master Cycling Club (EMCC), I am presenting you this month with the review of the club activities and its history.
EMCC web page
Over the past 25 years, many EMCC veterans have left their mark and influence on Edmonton’s cycling. Many have represented Edmonton city or Canada, in various races throughout the province and international competitions and games. Some became very well known riders in the local cycling scene, while others remained anonymous, as they rode only for their own pleasure and to stay healthy.
The Sunday group ride in Sherwood Park, at Tim Horton’s parking lot
Some of them stayed in cycling only couple of years and some are in cycling all their lives. Though I am not a club member any more, cycling is part of my life and it made me person that I am today. Most importantly, cycling at this level is fun and healthy activity that should be practiced by many more regular middle age people. Once you get ‘poisoned’ by cycling, you can’t get out of it that easily.
Richard Henderson leads the big group
Ladies group during the more relaxed ride
The EMCC organizes some two dozen races (time trials, road races, criteriums and track events) between May and September. There are club rides every Sunday morning from the beginning of April to the end of September, although informal rides start earlier and carry on later as the weather permits. There is also an annual week-long training camp in Penticton, held sometime during April. Every Friday evening from May to the end of August we rent the Argyll Velodrome for training purposes.
Participation is the main emphasis of the group as a whole, but the competitive spirit is alive and well in many of us, so trophies – for all age categories and for both men and women – and medals are up for competition each year and are presented at the annual awards night and banquet.
Membership is open to anyone, man or woman, aged 30 years and older, and includes access to all the above activities and events. As of 2008 we had some 100 members ranging in age from just 30 to 80. Members are required to assist in running the races – for more information on this and other matters, please see the Code of Conduct.
Once a year hundred of riders come for the ‘Harvest ride’ and EMCC members participate in big numbers
EMCC group rides are mostly in Strathcona County, departing from Sherwood Park Tim Horton’s parking lot
President: Jim Yeske
Vice President: Brian Countryman
Secretary: Dennis Cebuliak
Treasurer: John Dawson-Edwards
Race Director: Peter Heppleston
Membership / Clothing & Volunteer Coordinator: Richard Henderson
Web Site: Rod Tiedemann
The oldest members of the club, but not the slowest! From the left: Willem Langenberg, Hainz Gathen and ?
Another Sunday, another group ride. Lenard Berg leading the group here
History of the EMCC
The first meeting of the Edmonton Veterans Cycling Association was held on Monday, June 16, 1986 at the Italian Cultural Centre. Of the nine people in attendance only Joe Zombor is still a member. The first Bylaws of the EVCA were signed on March 5, 1987 by Jim Horner, Arvon Stacey, Lino Bovo, Peter Bigg and Dave Phillips. Jim Horner was the first president.
The EMCC arose from the perceived need for age-related bicycle racing in Alberta. The first few years saw regular changes of President, as the new group sought to establish an identity:
• July 07, 1986 – Jim Horner
• May 14, 1987 – John Van Werden
• October 19, 1987 – Len Blair
• October 17, 1988 – Don Jobson
EMCC veterans during the popular criterium races
John Edmonds, rides like a pro!
Then things started to settle down, the first trophy was established in 1989, the club that we know today started to emerge, and there was a period of steady growth though the 1990’s under Presidents:
• November 17, 1990 – Len Blair
• November 04, 1992 – Gordin Warner
• November 09, 1994 – Peter and Lesley Heppleston
• November 13, 1996 – Matt Claassens
• December 09, 1998 – Graeme Dibbs
On November 10, 1999, at the Annual General Meeting, the membership voted to change the name of our organization from the Edmonton Veterans Cycling Association to the Edmonton Masters Cycling Club. The two changes to our name came about because UCI terminology became “Masters” rather than “Veterans”, and because the majority of our membership had become first-claim riders. Graeme Dibbs was the first President of the EMCC.
By now the Club’s identity and annual program of events was well established, and strong growth continued into the new century, with membership and activity peaking in 2005 as a result of the interest created by the World Masters Games being held in Edmonton. Our presidents during this time were:
• December 13, 2000 – VACANT
• January 10, 2001 – Graeme Dibbs
• November 20, 2002 – Jim Yeske
• November 05, 2004 – VACANT
• December 08, 2004 – Joy Mekechuk
Ladies Time trial race
Man Time trialing
Since the WMG the Club has gone through a period of retrenchment, though participation in and support of the program of events continues to be very strong. Mandatory volunteerism was introduced in 2005; until then events were run by members’ spouses and supporters of the Club on an unofficial and totally voluntary basis. Since 2005 our President has been:
• October 01, 2005 – Shane Frahm
• November 07, 2007 – Shane Frahm
While the number of original and early members who are still active has inevitably declined, the foundation that they built has resulted in the robust Club that we are today. The future looks very promising as the largest age group of members is now the 50-year-olds, closely followed by the 40-year-olds. It seems that the need for age-related racing that was felt in 1986 is still very valid today, and the EMCC looks set to continue accommodating that need for some time to come.
Every spring the club organizes training camp in Kelowna. Pictured here are ex-president Shane Frahm and Gordon Sustrik
Break during the ride in Kelowna
EMCC Annual Banquet
The club executive would like to invite you to come celebrate the 25th ANNIVERSARY of E.M.C.C. and honor the B.A.R. (best all-rounder) winners at this year’s end of the season banquet. What a great way to start next year’s season and reconnect to your riding friends.
The location is tentatively booked at the Italian Cultural Centre in the Juventus Room for January 14, 2012. The cost will be $35.00 per person. Please accept this invitation and join us all in celebrating this milestone.
Cake for the 80th birthday – after successful race!
Peter Bigg – long time member, still going strong!
The history and evolution of the EVCA/EMCC can be neatly traced from the following list of trophy and championship winners. Note the early Italian influence of Rino Ongaro, the persistence of Maurice Johnson, and the recent “introduction” of ladies! Our second world-class member (besides Maurice Johnson, albeit second-claim) is Nancy Burden, World Triathlon Champion 1999.
EMCC/EVCA Trophy Winners
Jim Horner Memorial Trophy – Award of Excellence
Jim Horner was a dedicated man who track cyclists could always count on for help. Whether you needed to have a bike set up, a gear changed, or just wanted to be timed for a flying 200, Jim was there to lend a hand. We all miss Jim very much, so we wanted to commemorate his dedication to cycling with an award. The Jim Horner Memorial Trophy – Award of Excellence is for a club member who goes above and beyond in some aspect of the Edmonton Masters Club. It could be for volunteer work, for racing excellence, or helping out new riders.
This year’s recipient of the Jim Horner Memorial Trophy is Karen Carruthers. Karen was chosen as the recipient this year in recognition of her unwavering support of the EMCC and it’s events.
Weekly races at Argyll velodrome are very popular
In the summer races are organized on the velodrome once a week
Very competitive racing on the velodrome, but special track bikes are mandatory.
The EMCC organizes races (time trials, road races, criteriums and track events) and social rides for our members. Participation is the main emphasis of the group as a whole, but the competitive spirit lurks just below the surface in many of us, so medals and trophies are up for competition each year and are presented at the annual awards night and banquet. Our social rides are an opportunity for all members and prospective members to join the group.
Peter Heppleston – another long time member of EMCC
Membership is open to people who are Masters cyclists, i.e. 30 years and older, as defined by the Canadian Cycling Association, and includes both men and women.
To become a member please complete the membership form and return with payment as instructed or come out to one of our Sunday club runs with the completed form and payment. Please note that ALL first claim EMCC members must fill out the EMCC membership form as well as the ABA membership and ABA waiver – ABA fees are not required unless you also want an ABA License. All completed forms and applicable fees should be returned to Karen as instructed on the EMCC membership form. The EMCC has adopted a Code of Conduct. Please read the linked Code of Conduct before submitting your EMCC membership
Joe Zombor – EMCC member from the biginning (for full 25 years)
New location for EMCC Monthly Meetings
The EMCC general meetings will now be held at Percy Page Center, 11759 Groat Road in the Olympic Room #8, 3rd floor, south east corner. Please enter the building via the south entrance and sign-in with security when you arrive and sign-out when leaving. The first meeting will be October 6th at 7:30pm and each following 1st Wednesday of the month same time, same place.
Each member is required to volunteer for at least one position in order to be eligible to participate in the club races. If you do not complete your volunteer requirement this year you will not be eligible to race next year until after you have completed your volunteer duties. Those people who did not complete their volunteer requirements last year will not be able to race this year until after they have completed their volunteer requirement from the previous year.
All members are to list their preferred volunteer positions on the membership application.
Happy Anniversary to all EMCC members!!