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Monday, June 17
The Indiana Daily Student


Sigma Alpha Mu, Teter win Little 500 pole positions

Daniel Herman

After a cold, windy day at Bill Armstrong Stadium for the Little 500 Qualifications, three familiar names sat atop the women’s leader board while the men’s board was shaken up. \nTeter had the fastest time for the women, winning the pole position – the best starting position on race day – with an unofficial time of 2:39.45, followed by Delta Gamma and defending champion Kappa Delta to round out the top three. Sigma Alpha Mu, a team who finished 11th in last year’s race, earned the first-place green jersey for the men with an unofficial time of 2:23.20.\nWhile recent powers Team Major Taylor and Phi Kappa Psi posted the other two top-three times, other traditionally strong teams, such as last year’s champions Cutters, Phi Gamma Delta, Dodds House and Black Key Bulls, fell outside the top 10.\n“It is definitely for the men’s side a very shaken-up and new-look Quals board,” Little 500 Race Director Matt Ewing said. “You have a lot of teams that aren’t usually up top that did very well today, and you have some teams that maybe some people expected to be up top in that eight through 13 range. I think it will make for a great race day.” \nTimes for teams dropped significantly throughout the day as strong winds died down. The pole position repeatedly changed until Sigma Alpha Mu took the top spot for good after its afternoon run.\n“It is an honor to be in the pole position,” senior Sigma Alpha Mu rider Ben Gerber said. “This is four years of training. I am ecstatic right now, but at the same time we have a lot of big goals.”\nTeam Major Taylor just missed the top spot by six-tenths of a second.\n“I thought we had a good run and did what we could do,” Team Major Taylor coach Courtney Bishop said. “It was a tough day for everybody, but we’re happy with it. We have been on the pole before ... it is a great thing for Sammys and the race, but I think (we have) a good starting position.”\nA scary moment occurred during the early afternoon when Kappa Kappa Gamma senior rider Colleen Groth collided with an IU Student Foundation member who walked onto the track to grab a fallen poster. Groth fell off of the bike and appeared to suffer a serious injury. At press time on Sunday, the Indiana Daily Student did not know the extent to the injury. The remaining three riders completed their attempt and earned the 10th-place position.\nMany riders said it was crucial to place well at qualifications and earn a top starting position for race day.\n“There is typically a crash at the beginning of the women’s race, so it is important to be up near the front and get out of the way and be safe,” said senior Cycledelics rider Pam Loebig.\nSenior Julianne Ellis of Delta Gamma said she believes a good performance in Qualifications can provide team momentum heading into the race. \n“It gives you a lot of confidence going into the series events and leading up to the race,” Ellis said. “All of the hard work has paid off and we are excited to put it out there on the track.”

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