love of cycling began with his first
bike, a used 24" Texas Ranger balloon tire bicycle he received as a
Christmas present from his teacher, Mrs. Wendt, while attending
fifth grade at Sacramento Elementary School in Alamogordo.
In 1968, Carl bought a new Schwinn Varsity ten-speed that he used
for commuting around campus at the University of New Mexico, and
riding around Albuquerque after classes and on weekends. It was his
first road bike.
Back then, recreational cycling was yet to
enter its boom years of the 70's, Carl wasn't even aware that
bicycle racing existed and he had never heard of the Tour de France.
So by May of that year, he went looking for a club to ride with so
he could learn more about cycling.
Turns out at that time the only cycling club in the State of New
Mexico was a racing club called the Duke City Cyclists. Carl joined
the club and began riding his Schwinn Varsity on their training
To their surprise he could stay with them on those hard
training rides and it wasn't long before they had talked him into
racing bikes. Carl bought his first pro road bike, a Peugeot PX10
and at only 19 years old, this began his bicycle-racing career. He
was hooked for life.
By 1969 he had become the New Mexico State Road Champion, a title he
retained through 1970. At the time he was still in college majoring
in engineering, but now convinced that he wanted to make a career of
cycling, changed his major to coaching.
His goal at the time
was to race for a while, coach for a while, and then build a racing
school for kids.
It was purely coincidence that the University
of New Mexico had one of the best coaching programs in the nation.
While working his way through college he found the time to continue
racing, promote a number of races, and form two racing teams
including one college program.
Carl's serious racing came to a
halt following his marriage and the unforeseen medical problems his
wife had within weeks of the wedding in late 1970, but he never lost
his deep love for the sport of cycling. Even with these overwhelming
personal responsibilities he was able to race on a sporadic basis
while running training races and helping other racers get started.
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