The following article appeared in the Edmond Sun on Thursday, July 10, 2008 about a group of OC alumni, Team Undiscovered:
Team Undiscovered sees growth in third year
By Jeff Harrison
In the world of cycling, Team Undiscovered may still be the new kids on the block, but that's not say they haven't made a lot of friends. In just three years, the cycling club that started with three Oklahoma Christian University alumni, has quickly grown into a club of about 75 members.
While the membership has grown, so has the club's upcoming race, the Fire Hill Criterium. After drawing about 100 entrants last year, Team Undiscovered co-founder Brian Parks is optimistic that Saturday's race at the Edmond Crosstimbers fire training center could see as many as 150 cyclists.
“The races have gone really well in the past, we've had nothing but good response form participants and each year it's grown, and it's slowly but surely getting going,” Parks said. “It's hard to find an opening for the event because there's many races in the region, but now people are putting (The Fire Hill Criterium) on their calendars.”
Parks credits the success of the event to the addition of a new online registration option, a growing number of local sponsors, which have led to increased cash prizes.
“We have lots of local sponsors on board, and they key is the payout,” Parks said.
Team Undiscovered hosted their first event U.S.A. Cycling event in 2006 on the OC campus. Last year, the group moved the event to the Edmond fire training facility, which has been very beneficial.
“They've been more than happy to let us come up and race at the fire training center,” Parks said. “It's a unique facility, that is completely closed with a paved course set up, we don't have to have officials close off the roads and there's no set up.”
Along with the Fire Hill Criterium, the area cycling club also hosted SpeedWheel on June 11 in Drumright. The race was part of Oklahoma Freewheel, the annual ride across the state, and has helped draw new members to the club.
“These races help us recruit, it speaks a lot about the club, and how it's organized,” Parks said. “If a race is very well run, it can help a lot and vice-versa.”
Along with their races, Parks said Team Undiscovered has taken a unique approach to attracting new members.
“Our club takes a different approach, we're not intimidating to new members, and encourage anyone to get anyone involved, if we don't have diversity we try to get it,” Parks said. “This growth is more than we expected in such a short amount of time, and the feedback we get is really positive.”
The Fire Hill Criterium includes several categories for men, women and junior racers of all ages and skill levels. Cash prizes will be awarded in the top men's and women's categories. The event starts at 8:30 a.m. with the first women's race, and will conclude with the top three men's categories at 2:30 p.m.