The Olympic roster for the U.S. cycling team was completed Sunday amid criticism over the selection process.
The U.S. national team had hoped to send six of its eight endurance track team cyclists to Atlanta for a shot at the gold in the four-man team pursuit.But only four of them get to go because two Team Shaklee racers beat favored national team members in the individual pursuit and the points race at the Olympic trials at the Lehigh Valley Velodrome.
The four who will go to Atlanta are: Dirk Copeland, San Diego; Mariano Friedick, Colorado Springs, Colo.; Adam Laurent, Shell Beach, Calif.; and Mike McCarthy, New York.
The four who won't are: Zach Conrad and Christian Vande Velde, both of Colorado Springs; Matt Hamon, McKinleyville, Calif.; and two-time Olympian Carl Sundquist, Indianapolis. All are alternates.
The alternates were denied a trip to the Olympics because Brian McDonough won the men's points race and Shaklee teammate Kent Bostick was the surprise winner in the men's 4,000-meter individual pursuit.
The eight national team members had trained together for more than two years. They had hoped to win the two races that Shaklee did, then add four fresh faces, giving them solid depth on the team pursuit team.
Although only four racers are on the track at one time in the team pursuit, depth is crucial because the two alternates can be rotated into the mix between rounds, spelling tired or injured riders.
At 42, Bostick won't run the team pursuit, and McDonough won't either because he'll have to save himself for his points race, the final cycling event at the Olympics.
"It's a disappointment not to have six racers," endurance track coach Craig Griffin said. "I'm not going to say it's a good thing. But I think it will add motivation give the four who will be there a little more fire."
McDonough won the points race after Friedick, the defending national champion, wiped out on the 17th lap after an ESPN cameraman got too close to the action and caused a spill in the first heat Thursday night.
Friedick recovered to finish third, but a victory would have meant a fifth rider for the team pursuit squad. Now there will only be four - and no room for error.