History of the Wheelmen
Written by Jonathan Spicker   
Wednesday, 24 November 2010

 

Back In The Day
by Jonathan Spicker

The Queen City Wheelmen was founded during the late winter of 1971. 1972 was the first year the club was recognized by the Amateur Bicycle League of America, the precursor to the United States Cycling Federation and USA Cycling. It was an “amateur” league because that was the only kind of bicycle racing there was in the United States at the time. To make sure riders remained amateur, and eligible to compete in the Olympics, there were no cash prizes. Entry fees were usually around $2.25 and racers competed for bicycle components and trophies.

QCW was formed from an off-shoot of the Cincinnati Cycle Club by a couple of members who wanted something more than just long fast rides, they wanted to challenge others in races. Les Gesell and John Gilmer are the founding fathers of the organization. Les was earning a degree at the University of Cincinnati, while John was in his sophomore year at Aiken high school. Meetings were held in the Gesell’s apartment, and Mary Gesell was instrumental in the overall management of club membership and organization.

The club was fully up and running by April 23rd, 1972 when they held their first sanctioned event, the University of Cincinnati Criterium, held in conjunction with the UC cycling team with additional support from the University. This event would survive through 1981, although after the first year the event moved off campus to Burnet Woods and eventually lost any association with UC.

In these early years the only thing the club received resembling sponsorship came from Dan Humpert, the owner of a Montgomery Cyclery franchise in Clifton called Campus Cyclery. Dan’s shop was one of the very few places in Cincinnati that came close to being a pro-shop, almost the only shop where you could even buy a tubular tire, much less something like a bicycle built with Reynolds or Columbus tubing.  

Dan was very supportive of the club, using his shop van to take riders to races, employing racers at his shop, and selling race program advertising to all his small business friends in Clifton to fund the annual race. In 1977 Dan dropped his Montgomery franchise, changed the name to Campus Cyclery and increased his sponsorship of the club for a few more years. Dan did a lot to nurture Junior riders and a few years later sold his shop to one of those grown up Juniors by the name of Glenn Wolf.

Another force in the early forming of the club was Bill Gallagher and his wife Mary. They did a great deal of work in managing the organization and Bill was soon its’ most dominant rider. Bill was a teacher at Oak Hills high school and did a lot of training and coaching work with the Junior riders. Bill also organized a couple of “Little 500” style races for high school teams.

Bill went on to become a premier Senior rider in the Midwest. He eventfully joined the Cool Gear/Exxon team. Riding with the likes of Wayne and Dale Stettina, John Howard and Tom Schuller on the very first carbon fiber frame the Exxon Graftek G-1.

The club got its start with the assistance of some very much older riders who raced the “Veteran” category age 40+. One of the club’s most important veteran’s was Watson Nordquist. Watson had an extensive racing resume which started while living in Connecticut in 1938 and carried through being one of the most prolific attendees to the Cleves Time Trial Series where he rode nearly 200 times from 1974 to 1989.

Watson played a large role in the club administration and nurturing Juniors. I can remember more than once traveling to races in Watson’s car where he always had a propane tank filled with compressed air for filling his tubbies. Another part of Watson’s passion for helping others was his work with the Blue Ash Lions Club who QCW co-sponsored a race with in Blue Ash called the Southwestern Ohio Bicycle Championship for a few years.

As Les, John and Bill moved on others came into the organization to help fill the voids they left. One of these was Phil Kennedy Jr . , his son Phil Kennedy III was a dominating Junior rider. Phil Jr. was an attorney and assisted greatly with the organization of the club and taking his son and other Junior riders around the Midwest in their Airstream trailer.

The club continued to chew through officers and around 1977 acquired a very helpful resource in the form of Greg Hanfbauer. Greg was Vice City Treasurer and possessed the ability to devise, organize and follow through on any task he put himself to. One of those tasks that he and I were determined to put together was a bike race in downtown Cincinnati. This culminated with a unique, onetime event called the Rivertown Rally Gran Prix of Cycling. The race was a serpentine course that incorporated Riverfront Stadium and a pedestrian bridge over Ft. Washington Way.

With the running of the Rivertown Ralley the club acquired the assistance of Betty Lane who was our main liaison with the Downtown Council, the organization that runs Oktoberfest Zinzinnati. Betty would do much to hold the club together with her newsletter writing  from 1980 through 1986, and then as one of the behind the scenes organizers of the Cyclebration race series that ran from 1988 through the 1990’s.
 
That’s about it for my knowledge of the early years. Perhaps someone with better knowledge about the great Cyclebreation years can add to this.

Newsletters:
We’ve had a few prolific newsletter editors over the years. Visity the Grant Wearne Newsletter Library to read about the myriad of events QCW has undertaken throught the years. If you have any newsletters we're missing and would like to contribute, please This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Website:
In 1995 a forward thinking Curt Austin created the first QCW website. In 1997 Curt registered the qcw.org domain name narrowly beating out the Quaker City Wheelmen for the easy to remember name. The numerous photos that Curt posted in the early years were quite popular. The website has gone through a few hiccups in attempts to keep it relevant. In 2008 Mark Strecker created the format today which has endured due to the ease of adding new content.

Officers:
The club officers list below provides links to bios of some of the individuals involved. If you would like to add to these bios or provide some more history please contact me, This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Year President Vice-President Treasurer Secretary Newsletter Board of Directors, or Dedicated Volunteers
1971 Les Gesell Beth Gesell John Gilmer      
1972 Les Gesell Beth Gesell John Gilmer   Mary Gallagher BOD: Watson Nordquist, Larry Nordquist, Bill Gallagher, Alan Bolten
1973 Gesell/Gallagher Bill Gallagher Larry Nordquist Don Schilling Mary Gallagher BOD: Watson Nordquist, Dan Humpert, Larry Nordquist, Beth Gesell, Stu Pray, Phil Kennedy, Jr., Frank Gall, Alan Bolten
1974 Jack Christensen Bill Gallagher John Gilmer Watson Nordquist Sam Francis
BOD: Phil Kennedy, Jr., Dan Humpert, Paul Hollingshead, Bill Lapthorn
1975 Watson Nordquist Phil Kennedy, Jr. Gene Cornewll Jonathan Spicker Jonathan Spicker BOD: Dan Humpert, Bill Gallagher, Bill Lapthorn, Jack Christensen, Bill Froschauer, Carol Cornwell
1976 Jonathan Spicker Watson Nordquist Bill Froschauer Bob Atkins Jonathan Spicker BOD: Phil Kennedy, Jr., Dan Humpert, Bill Gallagher, Bill Lapthorn, Sam Francis, Dell Williamson, Glenn Wolf
1977 David K. Moore Brian Jones Greg Hanfbauer John Montag Kent Frazier BOD: Watson NordquistPhil Kennedy, Jr., Dan Humpert, Klff Hodgkin, Dell Williamson, Mark Vincent, Dave Burleigh
1978 David K. Moore Dave Gecks Greg Hanfbauer Rick Janke Jonathan Spicker BOD: Watson Nordquist, Dan Humpert, Klff Hodgkin, Dell Williamson, Dave Burleigh, Kent Frazier
1979 Jonathan Spicker Dave Gecks Greg Hanfbauer David K. Moore Jonathan Spicker BOD: Watson Nordquist, Dan Humpert, Dell Williamson, Mark Vincent, Betty Lane
1980 Jonathan Spicker Dan Humpert Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Bill Mirbach, Roger Auge, Kent Frazier, Mike Albrinck, Mark and Nancy Vincent
1981 Greg Hanfbauer Mike Albrinck Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Bill Mirbach, Roger Auge, Jack Schmidt, Walt Smith, Mark and Nancy Vincent
1982 Greg Hanfbauer   Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Bill Mirbach, Roger Auge, Jack Schmidt, Kent Frazier, Mark and Nancy Vincent
1983 Greg Hanfbauer   Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Bill Mirbach, Mark and Nancy Vincent
1984 Greg Hanfbauer   Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Bill Mirbach Mark and Nancy Vincent
1985 Jim Obert   Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Ellen Obert
1986 Jim Obert Robin Bruelheide Greg Hanfbauer Betty Lane Betty Lane BOD: Watson Nordquist, Frederick Mause
1987 Tim Gehling Robin Bruelheide Jim Obert  Tim Gehling Tim Gehling BOD: Watson Nordquist, Betty Lane, Ed Thuering,
1988 Tim Gehling   Jim Obert  Tim Gehling Tim Gehling BOD: Watson Nordquist, Fred Steinbrecher, Ed Theuring, Tom Vanover, Ellen Obert, Steve Trapp, Mike Scully, Ivan Forsythe
1989 Charley Gehling Jim Flaherty Dave Carr Jim Obert  Charley Gehling BOD: Watson Nordquist, Larry Haubner, Ivan Forsythe, Lois McKnight, Victor Roth
1990 Charley Gehling Jim Flaherty Dave Carr Lois Ellison Charley Gehling BOD: Watson Nordquist, Fred Steinbrecher, Victor Roth, Larry haubner, Roy Roberts
1991     Dave Carr   Jim Flaherty BOD: Watson Nordquist,
1992 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Gayle Goldsmith Rob Westendorf BOD: Watson Nordquist, Dan Roketenetz, Charley Gehling, Charlie Wright
1993 Jim Flaherty Fred Steinbrecher Dave Carr Charley Gehling Rob Westendorf BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Lois Ellison, Roy Roberts, Jim Clingman
1994 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Rob Westendorf BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Kurt Etter, Scott Lyle, Roy Roberts, Roxanne Westendorf, Charlie Wright, Jim Clingman
1995 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Rob Westendorf BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Roy Roberts, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Jay Faberman
1996 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Rob Westendorf BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Roy Roberts, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter
1997 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling   BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Roy Roberts, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter
1998 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Roy Roberts, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
1999 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Roy Roberts, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
2000 Jim Flaherty Chip Ellison Dave Carr Charley Gehling Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
2001 Bob Rich Doug Dobrozsi Dave Carr Evan Sayer Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
2002 Bob Rich Doug Dobrozsi Dave Carr Evan Sayer Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
2003 Doug Dobrozsi Tom Cross Dave Carr Larry Haubner Toby Costello BOD: Dan Roketenetz, Jim Obert, Charlie Wright, Jeff Vaught, Scott Lyle, Kurt Etter, Curt Austin
2004 Doug Dobrozsi   Dave Carr      
2005 Bill Lorenz Jim Rollo Jonathan Spicker Randy Frauhiger   BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Rick Hoeting, Bob Schoettinger
2006 Bill Lorenz Jim Rollo Jonathan Spicker Randy Frauhiger   BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Rick Hoeting, Bob Schoettinger
2007 Rick Hoeting Peter Wimberg Grant Wearne     BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Bill Lorenz, Dave Riemenschneider
2008 Rick Hoeting Peter Wimberg Grant Wearne Nathan Bremer   BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Bill Lorenz, Dave Riemenschneider, Dave Nissen, Dell Williamson, Mark Strecker
2009 Peter Wimberg Rick Hoeting Grant Wearne Lisa Hender   BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Bill Lorenz, Dave Riemenschneider, Dave Nissen, Dell Williamson, Karen Rokich
2010 Peter Wimberg Tracy Segar Grant Wearne Gina McCafferty   BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Dave Riemenschneider, Dave Nissen, Dell Williamson, Patrick McMullen, Karen Rokich, Jerry Hayes II
2011 Peter Wimberg Tracy Segar
Grant Wearne
Karen Rokich
Jonathan Spicker
BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Dave Riemenschneider, Dave Nissen, Dell Williamson, Patrick McMullen, Jerry Hayes II, Barbara Walker
2012 Peter Wimberg
Tracy Segar 
Grant Wearne 
Karen Rokich 
Jonathan Spicker
BOD: Doug Dobrozsi, Jonathan Spicker, Dave Nissen, Dell Williamson, Patrick McMullen, Jerry Hayes II, Rick Hoeting, Patrick Bendel,
2013 Tracy Segar
Dave Nissen
Grant Wearne Karen Rokichx  xxxxxxxxxxxxx BOD: Jonathan Spicker, Dell Williamson, Patrick McMullen, Rick Hoeting, Patrick Bendel, Peter Wimberg, Jeff Seeley, Robin Zuend
2014 Jeff Seeley
Dave Nissen
John Beyer
Karen Rokich
  BOD: Dell Williamson, Patrick McMullen, Rick Hoeting, Patrick Bendel, Katrina Savich, Jim Halpin
2015 Jeff Seeley
Dave Nissen &
Jim Halpin
John Beyer
Karen Rokich
  BOD: Rick Hoeting, Pat Bendel, Patrick McMullen, Melissa Kurzhuls, Nicole Wheeler, Brian DeSoto
2016
Patrick McMullen
Jim Halpin &
Peter Wimberg
John Beyer
Karen Rokich
  BOD: Pat Bendel, Melissa Kurzhuls, Nicole Wheeler, Brian DeSoto, Rob Westendorf

 

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 February 2016 )