Six gold-medal performance highlights Para-cycling Road World Cup for Team USA

By Brianna Tammaro | May 23, 2016, 7 p.m. (ET)
Will Groulx took home three medals, including two gold, from the 2016 UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup in Ostend, Belgium.

OSTEND, Belgium— U.S. athletes made sixteen trips to the podium in Ostend, Belgium, six of which were to the top step, to finish second in the medal count at the UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup from May 20-22.

The second leg of the road series showcased breakout performances from several of Team USA’s leading cyclists, including Will Groulx (Portland, Oregon), Shawn Morrelli (Leavenworth, Kansas), Jamie Whitmore (Mount Aukum, California), Jill Walsh (Syracuse, New York) and Tom Davis (Freemont, Indiana) who each won two medals.

“It was a very productive trip to Belgium for Team USA,” Ian Lawless, U.S. Paralympics Cycling high performance director, said. “We earned many medals from our regular podium performers, but it was great to see some breakout performances from a few new athletes vying for a spot on the Team USA roster in Rio.”

Three-time Paralympian Groulx led Team USA in the men’s H2 class with gold medals in the time trial, road race and handcycle relay along with U.S. teammates Will Lachenauer (Reno, Nevada) and Oz Sanchez (San Diego, California). He was also joined on the podium by compatriot Brian Sheridan (Clarkston, Michigan) who took silver in the time trial.

Jones showed resiliency in the women’s C2 road race, coming back from a crash to capture the silver medal, less than two seconds behind winner Sini Zheng of China. The seven-time Paralympian triumphed in the time trial with gold and took over the top spot in the world cup rankings.

Whitmore, Morelli and Fisher continued to dominate in their respective women’s classes. Whitmore finished with gold in the C3 time trial followed by silver in the road race. Fisher and Morelli went 1-2 respectively in the C4 time trial while Morelli upgraded with gold the next day in the road race. Fisher’s win sealed her first time trial world cup victory since 2014.

In the women’s trike races, Walsh added two silver medals to the U.S. haul in both races as Boyle also grabbed silver on the men’s side in the time trial.

Racing as an independent, Davis impressed in the men’s H4 races, taking home two silver medals and reasserting his place as a top Rio hopeful. He was two seconds from edging his closest competitor, Vico Merklein of Germany, in the road race.

The final leg of the UCI Para-cycling Road World Cup will take place in Spain from July 15-17. Results from Ostend can be found on the UCI website.