Spencer Gaddy of Charlotte, North Carolina had already made a name for himself in the southeast as a strong rider. Even when he was a first year rider 23-year old Gaddy dreamed of becoming a professional cyclist. Just four years later that dream has become a reality.
Inferno Racing along with Strava.com, a website where a rider can upload their GPS data from their rides, created the “Win a one year contract with Inferno Racing” contest. Participants downloaded their ride information from a GPS device and a winner was chosen based on the mileage and results in various categories (best time trial, most improved, best climb). From that pool of possible winners CTS coaches submitted their choice. At this point in the contest Inferno Racing director Frankie Andreau and members of Inferno Racing management narrowed it down to one lucky winner – Spencer Gaddy.
Other than racing most weekends and training hundreds of miles Gaddy is working toward his degree in computer science from the University of North Carolina.
While cycling came easy to him it wasn’t the first sport he suited up for.
“I grew up playing every team sport possible and I was terrible at all of them, so I am pretty happy to find one I am good at”, said the new pro.
The win a one year contract contest came to his attention from his friend John DeLong who ended up being the runner up.
“We had just done a race in Tennessee where we had been in the break all day together, and we were chatting about the competition after the race.”
“When I first entered the competition there was not a ton of guys in it, so I thought I had a chance. Then as the months went buy some other really good riders joined and I thought my odds were getting slimmer.”
So now that Gaddy has made the jump to the big leagues has he personally started to prepare differently than previous seasons?
“I am not personally planning anything different but I am sure my coach Thad Dulin has some plans for me. Other than that I won’t be working two jobs and going to school this off season. That will allow me to be 100% focused on my training.”
While his training isn’t completely figured out yet he does have some race goals for 2011.
“Winning an NRC stage race and racing professionally in Europe would be the top two.”
As Spencer prepares to embark on his new adventure Carolina Cycling News will check in periodically with this first year pro and see how he’s adapting.