Let’s start with the facts:
1. Ryan Roth is now in 3rd overall on the America Tour, 8 points out of first.
2. He has 4 major wins in 2016
- Winston Salem Classic (UCI 1.2)
- GP Cycliste de Saguenay, overall (UCI 2.2)
- Canadian National TT Champion (UCI CN)
- Tour de Delta (UCI 1.2)
3. His name is pronounced “Rowth”
Try it out: Ryan R-o-w-t-h. If you succeeded in not saying ‘Rawth’, you will be one of the few who has correctly pronounced his name while celebrating his success–including race announcers, teammates, staff, friends, and this writer… everyone in cycling calls him Rawth. At least his dog barks “rowth “ each time he walks in the door.
3 ways of reading each of the above stated facts
1. Roth’s Standing on the America Tour is important for Canada
The fact is that Ryan has been for the last 5 years one of the most successful cyclists in Canada and generated buckets of UCI points for this nation, helping us to qualify riders for World Championships. Getting riders to Worlds is key to their development. Therefore don’t read Roth’s place on the America Tour as simply an incredible individual achievement. It is also a contribution to the sport in this country. Stated plainly, Roth is more than a “good” bike racer. His results have a national impact.
2. Roth’s Wins Confirm the Rise of a Significant Development Program for Canadian Cyclists
Often Ryan’s wins involve massive individual efforts. Most recently he bridged to the break at the UCI RR in the Tour de Delta. Once there, he attacked repeatedly until he was in a group that put the odds in his favour for the win. And then he executed perfectly for a brutally hard fought, solo victory.
But Ryan had Emile Jean and Elliott Doyle in the break when he got there to help match up against another team with 3 riders (Rally). Emile and Elliott are the latest Silber riders to step up on this team, with Elliott scooping a win two days earlier. Think about it this way: Ryan is having his best season since 2012, but Matteo Dal-Cin, Nigel Ellsay, Alex Cataford, Ben Perry, Nicolas Masbourian, Kris Dahl, Emile Jean, Elliott Doyle and Michael Le Rossignol are all having their best seasons ever. (Julien Gagne has unfortunately been injured all year).
Roth’s wins therefore indicate that a racing program is firing on all cylinders–and he’s its leader. He’s been crucial to the improvement of our lead out train and he’s ridden the front relentlessly in support of others–as have all our riders. Remarkably, almost every rider on our team has had leadership roles this year and stepped up. So if Roth’s place on the America Tour helps Canada with points, he is also the leader of one of the key development programs in the country. The point: his wins are part of a program with a national impact.
3. “Rawth” “Rawth” “Rawth” or “Rowth”
You know how American commentators pronounce the “Tou-wer day France”? Well habits of pronunciation are hard to change. I’ll therefore end by saying this: Ryan is as important to Canadian cycling off the bike as he is on it. His structural advice, technical knowledge and pressing yet realistic expectations have helped shape the way this team operates and in three years we improved to the point that we are poised to really help cycling in Canada grow. We just need two kinds of support: the rah-rah-rah of our growing fan base, and financial support from Canadian entrepreneurs/corporations who share our vision of cycling and commitment to growth. “Rawth” or “Rowth”? We want both!