SPORTS Most guys who work for Electronic Data Systems don’t shave their legs. But NICK CHENOWTH, MICHAEL BUTTREY, and TREY GANNON are different. They ride for Team EDS, the only track bicycle squad of full-time employees that competes on the international level. The hairless look, of course, makes the riders more aerody- namic and makes it easier to treat the “road rash” they can get from a fall at 45 miles per hour while speeding around a concrete track shaped like an elongated wok.
Every weekday morning, Chenowth, Buttrey. and Gannon don the requisite EDS uniform-dark, plain suits-and go to work. Buttrey and Gannon are in the systems engineer program, and Chenowth is an ad- vanced sales education manager. They spend their days in cubicles, sitting in front of com- puter terminals. But when the quitting bell rings, and their co-workers head for happy hour, Buttrey and Chenowth head for the vacant roads of an industrial park to train for the 1992 Olympic trials in Minneapolis next May. (Gannon trains in Houston, where he works for EDS’s financial services division. ) This month, the EDS riders will compete at the Pan American Games in Havana, Cuba (provided they qualify), and the Open World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany.
Most of their competition will be professional riders who have the luxury to train full time, riding up to 600 miles per week. Since the Team EDS guys do most of their training after work, they’re limited to around 250 miles per week.
Even with this apparent disadvantage, Team EDS is making its mark on the cycling world. Last year they won 120 races, and team captain Chenowth holds the world record in the masters division of the “flying” 200 meters. He is also the world champion in match sprint and tandem match sprint events. “We are proving for the first time that you can have a career and be a first-class athlete, ” Chenowth says. “We’re definitely on a mission. “