As an undergraduate
at Wooster College in Ohio, von Allmen played a variety of sports. “I played golf, but
I’ve since almost given it up,” he says. Until three years ago, he played ice hockey
with a team of like-minded lunatics, but nighttime practices, a separated shoulder, and
two sprained ankles finally persuaded him to try something safer.
He is a competitive duathlete
(running and cycling) and triathlete (running, cycling, and swimming). “I enjoy riding
a lot more than running,” he says, though he still keeps in training for the running
part. Next year, when he’s on sabbatical, he plans to enter one race a month.
When they finally met, Ashley
and von Allmen realized that Moravian has more bikers than you might think. It’s
not just the pastime of a couple of eccentric fitness buffs. Earlier this semester, he
announced the formation of a campus cycling club.
Despite her win at Souderton
and taking off the whole of the spring semester of 2004 to train, Ashley just missed
going to the Olympic Games in Athens. Whether she’ll keep competing for four more
years to qualify for the 2008 Olympics an open question, but she’ll certainly keep
Cycling is one sport that
makes itself worth its competitors’ while. Ashley is part of a team sponsored by
Collavita-Bolla, maker of wines and vinegars, which helps pay for her bicycle, rider’s
gear, and travel expenses for getting to competitions.
Ashley tries to cycle every
day. “I don’t even keep track” of mileage, she says, “but I’m
gonna say 300 miles a week? Less in winter than in summer, of course.”
Von Allmen cycles when he
can, especially on weekends. “When you have kids,” he says, “five hours
of unbroken time does not exist.”
On a chilly fall day, Ashley
and von Allmen met on South Campus to compare bikes and ride together. Ashley has a custom-
made bike, tailored to every aspect of her body. Von Allmen’s, which looks racy
enough, is a decent road bike but not one for Olympic-level competition. They trade shop
talk. Von Allmen is looking to upgrade his bicycle, and Ashley has some pointers on what
to look for and where to get it.
They're all ready in their
aerodynamic bicycle shorts and windbreakers, their cycling shoes with the toe that hooks
right into the toe-loop of the stirrup. They don their flattenedegg helmets, and off
they go, riding a circular course that brings them time and again past the Priscilla
Payne Hurd Campus. When the photographer has shot to his heart’s content, the pair
waves and rides off to find a longer course. “It really helps to have somebody
to ride with,” von Allmen says.