Young Cyclists Among Twenty-two Teams Selected from Around the World

PHILADELPHIA – April 22, 2008 – In a recent announcement, organizers of the American Eagle Outfitters Tour of Pennsylvania presented by Highmark Healthy High 5®, named PA Lightning as one of twenty national and international six-man teams selected to compete in the six day, 450 mile race across the state from June 24 to 29.  Also named were international squads from Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, Netherlands, South Africa and Sweden and American teams from Arizona, California, Colorado, Minnesota, New England, New York, North Carolina and New England.

The Pennsylvania Lightning, is an under age 25 cycling team whose mission is to promote competitive excellence, sportsmanship, teamwork, talent development and brand enhancement while competing in a full season of regional, national and international cycling events highlighted by the Tour of Pennsylvania.

The young PA Lightning team debuted in the 2007 season with just four cyclists and competed successfully in over 40 American track and road events with a dozen top three finishes in elite and professional races from March through August. Two Pennsylvania riders are returning from the 2007 squad, Taylor Brown, 20 of Fleetwood, PA and Michael Chauner, 21 of West Chester.  Both are former junior national champions with international experience in road and track racing.  They will be joined by fellow Pennsylvanians, Chris Ruhl, 21 of Quakertown, a four time national champion and former junior world’s team member; Kyle Wagner, 23 of Bethlehem, a former junior national team member with racing experience in Belgium, Canada and France, and newcomer Jeff Salvitti, 20 of West Chester.  Also named to the team are Ben Showman, 22 of Fairfield, Ohio, a West Point Cadet and number one ranked rider in the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Conference this Spring and Eric Chrabot, 22, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, captain of the Virginia Tech cycling team who spent last season racing in Belgium.  Several other American cyclists who have competed with the internationally renowned Johan Bruyneel Cycling Academy in Belgium may also be named to the 2008 squad.

All of the PA Lightning team members are spending the early season representing their schools in intercollegiate events leading to the Intercollegiate National Championships in Ft. Collins, Colorado in mid-May.  Official introduction of the team will take place at the Turkey Hill Country Classic in Washington Boro, PA on May 3 and at the Memorial Hall Criterium in Philadelphia on May 4.


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