By Bill Tamburrino
The Ramona High School Cycle Dawgs did so well at Vail Lake in Temecula that they even fooled themselves.
“We thought that we did really well and we stayed for the trophy presentation. When we heard them read the fourth place trophy we thought that we didn’t do as well as we did. So we started to leave. We heard them announce the third place team in Division II and continued to leave. We were completely surprised when they announced Ramona High School as the winner of the second place trophy. We thought that we did well but not that well. We were shocked and very proud and happy,” said Coach Robert Grace.
Ramona’s Cycle Dawgs are only in their second year of competition and are one of 19 teams competing in Division II. Their squad is not as big as most of the other squads. Some schools bring over 100 cyclists to the competitions.
Kyle Skeen took first place in his heat, a 16 1/2 - mile trek. Wyatt Kent took third and Garrett Gaither came in fifth. Those points really helped Ramona win its first trophy. Courtland Hatch picked up team points in her race in the girls’ Division II race as did freshmen Nick Stemper and Ethan Hatch in their heat.
“It was a very close competition. Twelve points separated the first four teams in our division. We are improving and becoming very competitive,” said Grace.
If the Cycle Dawgs stick around until all of the places are announced in their next competition, they may hear their team named in first place.