New daddy Zach Bell dropped from lead pack at nationals

Zach Bell has a lot going on these days. The Watson Lake cyclist is going to the Commonwealth Games, just competed at the nationals and has a new addition to the family. Bell and wife Rebecca welcomed daughter Lucy on June 18.

Zach Bell has a lot going on these days.

The Watson Lake cyclist is going to the Commonwealth Games, just competed at the nationals and has a new addition to the family.

Bell and wife Rebecca welcomed daughter Lucy on June 18.

“Everybody’s good. She’s grown already and is up above her birth weight – all good things,” said Bell. “Mom is doing good and is getting in the groove of being mom. But she’s fine. Everything went smooth and everyone is getting on with life.”

Barely a week and a half after Lucy arrived, Bell was racing for a national road race title.

However, Bell was dropped from the lead pack late in the race and did not finish at the Canadian Road Championships in Lac-Megantic, Que., on Saturday.

“Where I am in my career, I’m in it for the win or I’m not in it anymore,” said Bell. “I got dropped with a couple laps to go from the lead group of about 10 guys. I definitely could have ridden it in for a top 10 placing, but for me that doesn’t really mean anything. Once I wasn’t in it to win it I pulled out.”

Bell, who won the national road title last year, forwent the time trial race and criterium, deciding to focus on the 179.5-kilometre road race.

It was the 31-year-old’s first race since breaking his collarbone in a criterium race in New Mexico at the start of May.

“I managed to make it out there and had a little bit of time to get ready,” said Bell. “I went out two days before the road race.”

“I just did the road race, that’s the one I wanted to defend,” he added. “It was just too soon after the baby (for the other events).”

While Bell came away with a DNF, teams on his professional North Carolina-based Team SmartStop had strong results.

SmartStop teammate Svein Tuft took first place in the road race and in the time trial at the championships. Teammate Kris Dahl rode to first in the time trial in the under-23 division.

Bell has been riding for SmartStop since early March but the season is only getting warmed up.

The two-time Olympian will compete at his third Commonwealth Games beginning at the end of month. Bell is slated to compete in both road and track for Team Canada at the quadrennial event in Glasgow, Scotland.

“That’s kind of been a bit more of a focus,” said Bell. “The road race at nationals went pretty well considering – I was able to make that front group – I just didn’t have the legs after the injury and baby and stuff. The focus has been on the later half of the season anyway.”

Bell won a bronze medal in the scratch race at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India. He took in a fifth place finish at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia.

Bell hasn’t done much track as of late, but a lack of practice didn’t hinder much at last year’s track nationals.

He won gold in the omnium event at the 2013 Canadian Track Championships last September in what was his first time back on the track since the 2012 London Olympics.

“I’ve done a couple training camps with the team that’s going, so I’ve been on (the track) but not tons,” said Bell. “Obviously I’ve been focusing on the road with my road team this year.”

Bell is one of two Yukon athletes – two Watson Lake athletes – named to Canada’s Commonwealth Games team.

Brittanee Laverdure was named to Team Canada’s wrestling team, Wrestling Canada Lutte announced at the start of June.

“I’m excited because I haven’t actually done a Games,” Laverdure told the News shortly after the announcement. “I’ve done lots of championships like the Pan Am championships, but I haven’t done Pan Am Games.

“I’m not planning to be around four more years, so I’m excited,” added the 32-year-old.

Bell leaves this weekend for a training camp in the Netherlands in preparation for the Games.

“I’d like to say thanks to all the people up there that supported us through our rough road over the last few years,” said Bell, who’s son Paxton Michael Bell died a few days after birth in October of 2012. “We’re pretty happy to have a little one now … It’s been a hard journey for us, but we’ve had people behind us, both in Vancouver and up north. It’s given us the strength to carry on get to where we are, which is a happy place again.”

Contact Tom Patrick at

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Wyatt’s World

Wyatt’s World for March 5, 2021.

Yukonomist: School competition ramps up in the Yukon

It’s common to see an upstart automaker trying to grab share from… Continue reading

The Yukon government responded to a petition calling the SCAN Act “draconian” on Feb. 19. (Yukon News file)
Yukon government accuses SCAN petitioner of mischaracterizing her eviction

A response to the Jan. 7 petition was filed to court on Feb. 19

City councillor Samson Hartland in Whitehorse on Dec. 3, 2018. Hartland has announced his plans to run for mayor in the Oct. 21 municipal election. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Councillor sets sights on mayor’s chair

Hartland declares election plans

Whitehorse RCMP will provide internet safety training due to an uptick of child luring offences. (iStock photo)
RCMP hosting internet safety webinars for parents and caregivers

The webinars will take place on March 23 and 25

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley receives his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Public Health Nurse Angie Bartelen at the Yukon Convention Centre Clinic in Whitehorse on March 3. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
State of emergency extended for another 90 days

“Now we’re in a situation where we see the finish line.”

The Yukon government says it is working towards finding a solution for Dawson area miners who may be impacted by City of Dawson plans and regulations. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Miner expresses frustration over town plan

Designation of claims changed to future planning

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been postponed indefinitely. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
2022 Arctic Winter Games postponed indefinitely

Wood Buffalo, Alta., Host Society committed to rescheduling at a later date

Crews work to clear the South Klondike Highway after an avalanche earlier this week. (Submitted)
South Klondike Highway remains closed due to avalanches

Yukon Avalanche Association recommending backcountry recreators remain vigilant

RCMP Online Crime Reporting website in Whitehorse on March 5. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Whitehorse RCMP launch online crime reporting

Both a website and Whitehorse RCMP app are now available

A man walks passed the polling place sign at city hall in Whitehorse on Oct. 18, 2018. The City of Whitehorse is preparing for a pandemic-era election this October with a number of measures proposed to address COVID-19 restrictions. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City gets set for Oct. 21 municipal election

Elections procedures bylaw comes forward

A rendering of the Normandy Manor seniors housing facility. (Photo courtesy KBC Developments)
Work on seniors housing project moves forward

Funding announced for Normandy Manor

Tom Ullyett, pictured, is the first Yukoner to receive the Louis St-Laurent Award of Excellence from the Canadian Bar Association for his work as a community builder and mentor in the territory. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Tom Ullyett wins lifetime achievement award from the Canadian Bar Association

Ullyett has worked in the Yukon’s justice ecosystem for 36 years as a public sector lawyer and mentor

Most Read