Sadly your usual BVN will not be able to pontificate about Little 500 in April so as the season kicks off it's worth assessing where the teams are. Not a great deal of things have changed since the early lines last September but this is always good for some debate so....
Little 500 odds
Mens race April 16th 2011.
Cutters 2/1 fav (3/2 in september). Eric Young remains undoubtedly the class of the field but the race day experience of Schroeder will be missed. Depasse looks like a Young clone and the battle between him, Walsh, Harbison and Lusk for the remaining places will keep things internally competitive through the spring. Knowing more about preparation the team puts in, it is no wonder they are gunning for 5 in a row.
DTD- 5/1 (10/1)- Seem like a cohesive unit with new quality supplementing veteran quality. Coudright looks lean and could ride more laps than in previous years. After two years in contention they are developing a team that knows how to compete.
PDT- 5/1 (7/1)- Have at least 5 riders who are going strong which represents good internal competition. West is way stronger than last year and Sharp will find his form through the spring. Their attitude in finishing second in 2010 shows they won't be satisfied with any less than the W.
Gray Goat 6/1 (7/1)- Seem to be taking the next step in their preparation by utilizing the benefits of the moto and are hungry to reach the podium. Holthouse and Kiel seem to be riding well on the road and have the track experience to be significant players.
Sigma Chi 6/1 (13/2)- Morrow and Fish are a dangerous double act and they have a group of rookies that are clearly in pretty good shape. With the Dean at the helm then they shouldn't make the error of last year and he knows how the ride and win this race.
Beta 7/1 (11/2)- Anonymous through the winter and rumors of Green's dedication might hurt their challenge but have the talent to compete for the win.
Hoosier Climber 8/1 (14/1)- Clambered into being serious players with the acquisition of Smallman who seems to have brought good road form onto the track. As a former IU Varsity athlete he has the competitive-drive to succeed.
FiJI- 8/1 (8/1)- I got nothing, wouldn't recognize any of their riders if I bumped into them on the street.
CRU cycling 9/1 (-)- A great fall series has put this growing program on the map. Seemingly very organized with a good hunger to succeed. Might surprise some people on race day.
BKB 12/1 (12/1)- Very quiet recently but may come strong to the track after a good winter training camp.
Phi Psi 14/1 (12/1)- Once again somewhat of a mystery team and will suffer having just one rider with race day experience. Top 5 would be a great result.
The field 20/1- Difficult to see anyone else challenging for the win...prove me wrong!
Womens Little 500- April 15th 2011
Teter 3/2 fav (2/1)- With CvK, Gowdy, Laurie and competition for the final place this team is set for both 2011 and the future. Since 2004 has built a pedigree only rivaled by the Cutters. Expect big things from CvK in her final race.
DG 4/1 (6/1)- Coach Half has the girls pointed in the correct direction and by all account have rookies that are amongst the best. Kent will be one of the top ITTers but can she win the big race for the team?
Pi Phi 6/1 (8/1)- Brown is motivated and has much more support than last year. As in 2010 she will be the individual to watch and is as talented as anyone else on the track.
Wing It 7/1 (9/1)- The program seems to be developing nicely with good results in the Fall series. Unlike the Hewitt year they have strength throughout and with the resources at their disposal should come out of the winter in good form.
Theta 8/1 (12/1)/ Dickman and Metherd have got their rookies in good shape for the start of track practice. The rookie MnO winner Chelminiak looks well adapted for the track. Will be in contention for the top 5.
Army 8/1 (6/1)- Have a fun group of riders and have been putting out solid results at the Marian indoor TTs. In the 4th year as a contending team so need to make the take the next step onto the podium....good luck required....
AGD 9/1 (5/1)- Balchan might prove to be the fastest rider on the track but will she have the support she needs to compete for the win? Perhaps an alliance with Pi Phi could benefit both teams...
Kappa 10/1 (10/1)- The Fiji of the girls. Aside from RC member Sauter, BVN has no clue of their form aside from knowing they had, as ever, a good winter training trip.
The field 20/1- Overall a lesser number of teams that can compete for the win than in the Mens race but it is still always a fun time!
5 days ago