The UCCS cycling team said it gets a few hundred dollars a season, but the cost is more like $10,000. They love the sport, but the expense on a student budget is weighing them down.
“When you have to provide for a family, and go to school maintain a job, and try to compete it really wraps up a lot of your time, and financially,” said Brad Tyra, one of the team members with a family of his own.
Cycling is considered a club sport at UCCS and many other colleges. Cycling club President Jason Lupo and Student Government President Stephen Collier said the club received $1,970 from the student government, but that barely puts a dent in the cost of a season. A season can run between $10,000 and $15,000. Team members have to pay for their uniforms, fees, registrations, and travel.
“The school is happy that we are there, but I wish we had more help from them. Providing a coach, providing funding,” said Tyra.
Kelly Neville is also a team member, and she hopes the Colorado Springs cycling community will come together and help the team with their struggle.
“A lot of the people who are here are older and more experienced with cycling. If they show a little bit of help to the younger athletes, then that will help them blossom as cyclists,” said Neville.
UCCS officials said the university supports the cycling club, but as a university funded mostly by tuition, clubs cannot be funded at the level they would like.
The UCCS cycling club said a few of their members are trying to make it into the next Olympics in Brazil.
For more information or to contact the UCCS Cycling Club you can go to UCCSCycling.org or call 714-333-7287
In an e-mail received after the story aired, the UCCS Cycling Club President, Jason Lupo wanted to make clear that the club does not consider the university a "bad guy," and understands the set policies.