Cycling community mourns loss of Erica Greif

Erica Greif (ZOCA-Halo Sports), 24, of Reno, Nev. was tragically killed in a car accident late Tuesday while driving to the Redlands Bicycle Classic, the first national road race calendar event of the year.

Greif is the sister of David Greif, 20, a member of the University of Arizona cycling team and current Southwest Collegiate Cycling Conference leader.

Erica, a promising semi-pro cyclist, was a recipient of USA Cycling’s Edmund R. Burke Grant, which is given to up-and-coming junior and U-23 racers. Her fiance, Nick Schaffner, is a category 1 racer for the Herbalife team.

Nicknamed the “Reno Rocket,” Erica wasn’t a sprinter, “but she accelerated like one,” her team director, Martin Santos, said.

Erica was driving late at night from Reno to the race, after taking a test at the University of Nevada earlier that day, according to Velo News.

“To know my sister is gone is something I just can’t yet understand,” David told Clipped In and wrote in his own Facebook post. “I love my sister. Erica Leigh Greif is gone from my life and I wasn’t ready.”

David said she was his inspiration, competition and friend. She was a major reason why David began cycling and racing, he said: “We got each other more and more into it because of how competitive we are with each other.”

“I cherish all the rides, all the coffees, all the laughs, all the fights we went through together. She was amazing and everything a brother could want. Erica got engaged to an amazing man, Nick Schaffner, got on a semi-pro team like she has been striving for, and [was] soon to graduate college…rest in peace.”