The Ontario Cycling Association [OCA] is proud to announce the 2018 major award recipients. These awards recognize the outstanding accomplishments and contributions of our athletes, coaches, volunteers, officials, and clubs.
Road Award Winners
Road Contributor of the Year – Art Adams (Off the Front Sports)
Despite people often telling Art Adams to slow down, he keeps finding more ways to stay busy and 2018 was no different. In addition to coaching one of the largest youth clubs in the province, Art also assisted Team Ontario at the Canadian Road Championships in Saguenay. His passion for road cycling also resulted in his club hosting an OCA Youth Road Development Series Event and taking the lead in organizing the road events for the Ontario Summer Games in London, which was a highlight event of the season for many developing road cyclists.
Road Organizer of the Year – Bike Race Ottawa
Organizer of Ottawa’s longest running bicycle race, the Preston Street Criterium, OCA affiliated club Bike Race Ottawa (BRO) once again ran an exciting and fan-friendly event in 2018. As the first event on the Ontario Criterium Series calendar in 2018, the Preston St. Criterium once again saw some of the top racers across the country compete in preparation for the National Championships the following weekend. Also one to give back to the community, the event sees a number of youth under 15 years of age participate in fun kids races with 100% of proceeds from registration supporting the local Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario.
Road Male Athlete of the Year – Benjamin Perry
A previous winner of this award, Ben may have had his best season yet with a number of impressive results spanning multiple continents. His season started off in South America where he would finish 23rd in Stage 1 of the Vuelta a San Juan Internacional. In May he would finish 21st in the GC at the Tour of Japan and follow that up the next week with a 6th place finish in the GC at the Tour of Korea. Ben would return home to Canada after these two successes and capture the Mountain Jersey at the Tour de Beauce and a silver medal in the Canadian National Championships Road Race.
Road Female Athlete of the Year – Katherine Maine
2017 OCA Road Female Athlete of the Year Katherine Maine certainly set out to make 2018 even better. Her season started off with a 2nd place finish in the Youth Classification at the Joe Martin Stage Race. She would see some of her greatest accomplishments in 2018 however on home soil, finishing 16th at the Grand Prix Cycliste de Gatineau, 14th at the Chrono de Gatineau and capturing her first ever Elite Women’s National Championship in June. She would cap off her strong season with a 7th place finish in Stage 2 of the Tour Cyclist Féminin International de L’Ardèche.
Youth Award Winners
Most Sportsmanlike Male – Colton Woolhouse
Colton has continuously proven his eagerness and love for cycling in both Mountain Bike and Cyclocross disciplines. When Colton is not preparing for races or competing for the podium at events, he is always willing to lend a hand around the pits, feeding teammates, carrying wheels, and providing any support that will enhance the experience of those around him. A member of Angry Johnny’s Racing, Colton has shown an exemplary attitude both on and off the bike in 2018.
Most Sportsmanlike Female – Ainsley Black
Ainsley Black is a decorated racer, with a lengthy resume of past results. She uses her age and experience to help train and inspire youth at events while also balancing her own preparation for races. She is often seen cheering on other racers and motivating her NCCH teammates to do their best in all circumstances. Her outgoing nature also makes her easily approachable allowing her to engage in all parts of the community.
Most Improved Male – Luca Buhlmann
Luca was introduced to the cycling scene in March of 2018. Participating in his first Youth Road Race at the Delaware Speedway on Victoria Day weekend, he was slotted in the E category in order to get a feel for what road racing was all about. After a successful showing at the race, Luca gradually progressed to the higher categories. He was the only participant in the 2018 Youth Road Series to upgrade twice before the end of the season, progressing from the E category to the C category. Luca was also a participant at the 2018 Ontario Summer Games for Road where he was able to secure a bronze medal in the Team Time Trial.
Most Improved Female – Melissa Koops
Melissa, a member of the Midweek Cycling Club in 2018, was heavily involved in the Youth Development Series in both Track and Road. Melissa started the road season in the D category, which is geared towards newer riders looking to get their first racing experience. After a season of hard work, she achieved her goal of transitioning to the C category where she would close out the season at the NCCH Franklin Templeton Investments Youth Cup. Melissa also participated in the Road portion of Ontario Summer Games in the U18 category, which proved to be another great opportunity to continue to improve her racing skills.
BMX Award Winner
Tim DaSilva BMX Athlete of the Year – Cole Zufelt
Cole had an extremely successful 2018 BMX season. As a member of the National NextGen Challenge Team Cole captured the National Championships in the Challenge Class and competing at the BMX World Challenge finals, Cole captured the bronze medal in the Cruiser Boys 15 and 16 year old category. Cole had more race victories in 2018 than fingers on both hands and we are likely to see even bigger things from him in the coming years.
Cyclocross Award Winner
Cyclocross Athlete of the Year – Ruby West
The 2017 award winner of this award looked to build on her amazing previous season and build she did. Ruby would take the victory at both days of the NBX GP of Cross in December 2017 and followed that up with another back to back race winning weekend at the NCGP event. She would then participate in two World Cup events in January 2018 before heading to the World Championships in the Netherlands and finishing 21st. In October 2018 Ruby would take home top spot at both days of the Sherbrooke CX before returning to Ontario in early November where she would take home 2nd place in the U23 category at the Pan-Am Cyclocross Championships in Midland. That race would be great preparation for the following weekend’s National Championships in Peterborough where Ruby would retain her title as U23 Women’s Champion by taking the victory by over a minute and a half over her closest competitor. The results speak for themselves, but Ruby is just scratching the surface of her potential and many expect even more success in her future.
Track Award Winners
Track Male Athlete of the Year – Derek Gee
Derek Gee and the members of the Canadian Team Pursuit had an incredible year in 2018. As a member of the Team Pursuit, Derek was involved in breaking the Canadian record several times a World Cup events. This included capturing a World Cup silver medal and placing 8th at the World Championships. Individually, Derek dominated the Canadian Track Nationals winning four gold medals including the omnium and individual pursuit titles.
Track Female Athlete of the Year – Annie Foreman-Mackey
Annie-Foreman-Mackey is one of Canada’s top track cyclists. She has experienced success internationally as part of the Women’s Team Pursuit at World Cup events and finished just off the podium with a 4th place finish at World Championships. Annie has also had success in the individual events, placing 11th in the individual pursuit at World Championships and taking home the gold medal at the Canadian Track Nationals.
Mountain Bike Award Winners
MTB Contributor of the Year – Andrew Watson
An Elite racer, Andrew has branched out from his racing roots, providing coaching to youth athletes and, with the help of some friends, started up the mountain bike team AWI Racing p/b The Crank and Sprocket Co. Andrew also has leant some of his expertise at various OCA projects and with his expertise and experience, is sure to lead many of today’s mountain bike youth to future success in the sport.
MTB Organizer of the Year – Substance Projects
With another successful year in 2018, Substance Projects provided riders of all ability levels with great racing opportunities in a recreational yet competitive atmosphere. Dan Marshall and the team at Substance Projects are always open to feedback from riders and use this input to continually improve the events year after year. It is this connectedness with their customers that ensures the events are appealing to the participants and encourage riders to continue to come out and enjoy a day of riding. Dan Marshall and Substance projects look to continue this success in 2019 with their first XCMarathon series event on April 13th at Turkey Point.
MTB Female Athlete of the Year – Haley Smith
Haley Smith is one of the hardest working athletes in the province. She has continued to improve year over year and never let set-back discourage her progress. 2018 was a highlight year for Haley. She started off her season by taking home a bronze medal for Canada at the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast. This success continued into a fantastic MTB season, which included four top 20 finishes at World Cups, including a top 10 finish at Mont-Sainte Anne. Haley concluded her season with an outstanding performance at the MTB World Championships placing 6th.
MTB Male Athlete of the Year – Peter Disera
Peter Disera continues to climb the MTB rankings. In his first year of elite he managed to capture a top 30 performance at the World Cup in Germany and top 40 at the World Cup in Mont-Saint-Anne. Nationally, he continued his success at the Canadian MTB Championships taking home the gold medal for the third consecutive year.
Volunteer and Board Awards
Board of Directors Special Recognition Award – Malcolm Eade
Malcolm has been a volunteer with the OCA for 11 years. During this time he volunteered as a coach, organizer, and board member. He was involved in the planning and hosting of the OCA’s March Endurance Camp to Carolina for 13 straight years. During these camps, he made he 15+ hour drive with trailers full of bikes and vans full of excited teenage athletes. At the camps he placed high emphasis on athlete safety and taught many young athletes the skills required for safe pack riding and etiquette on live road systems. Additionally, Malcolm lent his coaching experience to a number of Team Ontario projects including high level competitions such as Tour de L’Abitibi. After several years, Malcolm decided to retire from the OCA Board of Directors, he was instrumental in putting together the OCA’s Strategic Plan and updating OCA policies and procedures to align with Ministry requirements.
OCA Volunteer of the Year – Brian Ford
Volunteer and contributor to all things cycling. Every weekend Brian would be helping at an event from start to finish, eager to contribute in any way possible. Even during his final months, he still was talking about all things cycling, asking how certain races were and keeping tabs on his favourite athletes and volunteers to ensure they were keeping well. His passion and eagerness to always help at events inspired everyone around him.
Award Selection Criteria
At the conclusion of the nomination period, the OCA staff reviews ALL submitted nominations. Three (3) finalists are selected based on the criteria for the award, and forwarded to the OCA Board of Directors for final voting. Note: If less than three (3) nominees meet criteria, the OCA reserves the right to limit the final voting of the award to only those who have met the pre-defined criteria for the award.