In the Draft

In the Draft

1 Comment 📁 Slider, Sports 🕔25.January 2021
In the Draft

When I asked Owen Daniels about when he started riding a handcycle he remembered the exact date. April 27th 2010 he fondly remembers it. He recalled it was only 3 months post injury. That’s when he met Cotie Williams of Team Possibilities – Loma Linda University, she introduced him to an XLT Pro club bike.  “It was so hard to go fast on it, I can’t believe I stuck with it” he said.  Rides were something for him to look forward to. Burn some energy and meet new people

The thought of competing and racing didn’t occur to him at first. Pre injury he was an avid snow boarder and liked to stay in shape by lifting weights but never gave endurance sports a try. Steve Hoffman, a friend and avid cyclist helped Owen with training and riding skills. He began to feel confident enough to jump into his first race. Redlands Cycling Classic was not far from where he lived and Steve also raced in it so it made sense that he would make his racing debut there. Owen didn’t win that weekend but he was hooked and looked forward to his next event and already started planning how to get better.

 

Handcycle racing is a hard sport. Key elements to success are health, training, diet, equipment, sponsorship, classification rules and family support. Take any of these elements out and goals that were achievable suddenly become less possible. Owen is motivated, doing the things cyclists like to do such as training and eating properly are easy for him. Since getting a smart trainer he rarely misses a workout. Now he doesn’t have to drive to a park or bike path to get a good workout in. Equipment for him has been an evolution. Trying to always have a competitive bike to train and race on is an expensive endeavor. It’s caused him to be resourceful. Owen raced on a Carbonbike Evojet for many years. It was almost to the point where he was the last one on the start line that had 650c wheels all the way around. This past year he made the switch to a Carbonbike R-2020 and to no surprise has been performing time trials regularly above 24 mph. He is a member of the handcycle racing squad Team Possibilities- Loma Linda University. They are huge supporters and great sponsors. Recently Owen married his soulmate Stephanie and has support that will help him through those moments he doubts his abilities. Knock on wood health for Owen is good now and will stay that way. After back, elbow and trigger finger surgery including a bout with Covid he is healthy and ready to continue his training in 2021. The plan is to make a bid for the National team and possibly earn a spot to compete at world cups with Team USA. The last item on the list is not in his control and that’s classification. It can be argued that H3 is more of a complete thoracic vertebrae class then when Owen was originally placed in H4. If moved to H3 he will no doubt rate higher against standard helping his odds of making Team USA.

                   

 

Every time I’ve met Owen over the past several years I must say he fits the classic California stereotype. He has a perfect stylish haircut, great tattoos, and has a friendly energetic attitude. Honestly I wouldn’t be at all surprised if at some point I’ll hear him say “let’s catch some rays and ride some waves”. This great approach has allowed him to mature and develop into a very competitive racer. He is confident in the corners and has a great power to weight ratio that could pay off on the courses that challenge with long climbs. Without hesitation I predict Owen to make podiums in the USA. If given the chance to race internationally he could no doubt reach new levels from the experience. He just needs to earn the draft in the pace line and nail it when the time is right.

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1 Comments

  1. 🕔 18:14, 28.January 2021

    Jon A

    What a great story Owen.
    You make me very proud!

    YOUR THE MAN OWEN

    reply comment

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