This time last year, Scott Zwizanski was ready to walk away from bike racing. That mindset turned out to be the secret he’d been looking for.
Zwizanski, a 33-year-old native of West Chester, enjoyed a breakout 2009 season that has him among the elite of the North American peloton going into his hometown race, the Philadelphia International Cycling Championship.
“I just decided to go through all last year with the idea that it was my last year,” Zwizanski said. “I know now that 2010 won’t be my last year, but the attitude worked so well I decided to try to keep it.”
Riding for the Kelly Benefits Strategies team, Zwizanski posted major victories at the Tour de Beauce and the Vuelta al Uruguay, and he finished third at the national pro time trial championships.
He’ll be one of the leaders for KBS in Sunday’s race. His best chance is likely to get himself into a breakaway group, and then escape on his own late in the race.
“It’s every rider’s dream to win on his home roads,” Zwizanski said. “I started coming to watch this race every year in 1992 or ’93, and I watched it on TV before that. Even though I’m from the suburbs and not the actual city, this is my home race.”