Team Sweeps Littleton Criterium Podium in Honor of the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation Grant Recipient
Ty Magner, Carlos Alzate, and Luke Keough Donate All Winnings to UHCCF
The Littleton Criterium on Sunday held a special place on the calendar of the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling team, as the event was run to honor a grant recipient of the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation.
Ty Magner and the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team dominated the proceedings at the Pro Road Tour’s Littleton Criterium on Saturday. Magner was led out by all six of his Blue Train teammates to a huge victory, and was followed across the line by Carlos Alzate in second place and Luke Keough in third.
The UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization provides medical grants to help children gain access to health-related services not covered, or not fully covered, by their family’s commercial health insurance plan.
The racing was controlled by the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team from start to finish. The tight corners on the L-shaped loop in downtown Littleton caused the peloton to string out into almost a single line. Shepherding Magner from the gun, the team raced at the front, ensuring all the moves that tried to go clear ultimately failed. Coming into the final few laps, the team did what they do best; upping the pace so far that no one could consider making a move off the front. The tactic paid off, and in a show of ultimate strength, the Blue Train brought all six riders in the race to the front. Slingshotted by his teammates, Magner launched his sprint late in the final straight and powered across the line in first. In a characteristic UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling move, lead out riders Carlos Alzate and Luke Keough kept sprinting, ensuring they also crossed the line ahead of their competitors to round out the podium.
The clean sweep of the podium was dedicated to the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation, with all riders in the team deciding to donate their winnings to the charity. The team honored the charity by spending the afternoon with a UHCCF grant recipient. Ethan, a seven-year-old from the Denver area, was surprised by the team with a new bike and helmet, as well as a team jersey, socks, shirt, and hat. After an exclusive meet-and-greet opportunity with the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team, Ethan and his Dad were invited on stage in front of the crowd for an interview with the race announcer. After the interview, Ethan donned a team jersey and competed in the family cruiser event with other local children.
Ethan’s father commented, “On Saturday, my son Ethan was recognized as a ‘pro cyclist for the day’ by UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team. He was able to meet with the team and was presented with a new bike and some really cool cycling gear. He had such a great time– They took the time to get to know him and showed genuine friendship toward him. The highlight of the race for him was when he had the chance to go out on the start line with the team before the race and take pictures with them. You could just see how happy he was. Thank you, UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team, for all you have done for my little boy. You have no idea just how much you have done for him.”
UHCCF was founded in 1999. Since 2007, UHCCF has awarded more than 10,000 grants valued at over $29M to children and their families across the United States. UHCCF’s funding is provided by contributions from individuals, corporations and UnitedHealth Group employees. Families can receive up to $5,000 annually per child ($10,000 lifetime maximum per child), and do not need to have insurance through UnitedHealthcare to be eligible. Grants have helped pay for necessary medical services and medical equipment such as physical therapy, surgery, chemotherapy, and medical equipment such as orthotics, wheelchairs and hearing aids for children. The team shares their love of cycling with UHCCF grant recipients by making select recipients “pro cyclists for the day.”
Adrian Hegyvary had a few words to say after the weekend’s events. “Since UnitedHealthcare became title sponsor of this team in 2010, we have been inspired to emulate the success of the company in our racing by constantly striving for our best possible results while inspiring people to live healthier lives. Our partnership with the UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation has been equally motivating–inspiring us to engage with the people we meet through our racing and give back to the communities we visit. Every year it’s a tremendous honor to meet the recipients of UHCCF grants. Our contribution to this enormous cause is humble, but we’re always delighted to see the difference it makes. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the UHCCF in years to come, being inspired by the mission of this charity and the remarkable stories of those it benefits, and hopefully inspiring others along the way.”