Stage 4 - Desert Bone and Joint Specialists/Rebound Physical Therapy Twilight Criterium
Friday, July 12th 2002 - The Twilight Criterium takes place in downtown Bend on a flat six turn course with very good pavement. This race traditionally draws 20,000 spectators.
Stage 4 Results
1. Henk Vogels - Mercury
2. Gord Fraser - Mercury
3. Alex Candelario - Prime Alliance
4. Soren Petersen - Saturn
5. Antonio Cruz - USPS
6. Chris Baldwin - Navigators
7. Hugo Prado Neto - Cody Racing
8. Todd Littlehales - Navigators
9. Brian Hawley - Sierra Nevada Cycling
10. John Peters - Prime Alliance
Stage 5: Kirby Nagelhout Construction Grand Prix
July 13, 2002, Bend, OR. - It was another tough day in the heat and hills for the men and women here at the Cascade Classic. With only a short criterium tomorrow, today's Tumelo Grand Prix Circuit Race in the hilly terrain north of Bend was probably the final opportunity at this tour for contenders to take a real shot at overtaking the leaders.
In the women's race, after several attacks were reabsorbed, a breakaway finally stuck with Nicole Demars of Hutch's and Saturn's Jessica Phillips. The two rode nearly half the 56 mile race together off the front of the field creating a comfortable gap of 2:30 by the last seven mile lap. Demars had the better punch at the finish with Phillips taking a well deserved second place. The consistent Heather Alberts of Goldy's led the field in for third with the overall race leader Saturn's Kim Bruckner finishing safely in the group thus maintaining her lead.
The men's race, held in the heat of the day, saw a bold Mike Creed of Prime Alliance throw the first punch just half a mile into the 77 mile stage. Several others bridged across over the course of the first lap and the gap opened up to 1:10 by the finish of the first lap. With Creed only one minute behind race leader Chris Wherry, his Mercury train set a hard tempo riding on the front to control the gap and protect Wherry's overall lead. Just after the first lap on the one kilometer long KOM hill Saturn's Tim Johnson made his own bold move and attacked the Mercury train, bridging across to the lead break. It took him just half the lap to reach the leaders, now a strong group of seven who were all interested in staying away from the peloton.
As the gap continued to grow up to a maximum of 2:15 the Mercury men kept their cool and simply stuck to their defensive tempo riding. They gradually increased the speed with around four laps to go and the gap started coming down. For the last four laps, each time up the KOM climb, there were attacks which disassembled the Mercury train. However, they were able to regroup each time and continue to bring the gap down. By the bell lap the gap was down to just 30 seconds and the break was down to four as they forged on. Mercury starting to show signs of exhaustion the stage was set for a very close finish.
In the end the breakaway barely made it to the line with John Leiswyn of 7-Up/Nutrafig taking the win over Creed and Johnson.
Kirby Nagelhout Construction Grand Prix
Results: 56 miles - Women
1. Nicole Demars - Hutch's
2. Jessica Phillips - Saturn
3. Heather Alberts - Goldy's
Results: Men 77 miles - Men
1. John Leiswyn - 7-Up/Nutrafig
2. Mike Creed - Prime Alliance
3. Tim Johnson - Saturn
GC for both races remains the same.
Stage 6: Carrera Volkswagen Old Mill District Criterium
July 14, 2002 Bend, OR - The final day of racing here at the Cascade Classic was raced on a nearly flat and not too technical 7/10th mile criterium course in which the women did 45 minute + 5 laps on and the men 1 hour + 5 laps. With temperatures finally dropping down to the mid 80's, it was a very pleasant day at the races for riders and the sizable crowd cheering them on in the old Mill district of Bend.
The women's race started off with several attacks and counterattacks which produced numerous small breakaway attempts in the first 30 minutes of racing but nothing would stick. Then with about eight laps of racing left Saturn's Kim Bruckner pushed the pace up high enough in a counter attack that only Sandy Espeseth of Hutch's could respond. They etched out a 10 second lead over the next 3-4 laps and it looked touch and go until finally the chase from the field abated and the gap grew to a comfortable 20 seconds going into the last lap.
Bruckner jumped first and looked to have it won but Espeseth benefited by waiting in the draft until the last 50 meters to come around and nip Bruckner at the line. Hutch's Nicole Demars brought in the field for third. Bruckner's second place put a rosy glow on her overall win at the 2002 Cascade Classic.
In the men's race a large break of 12 emerged only a few laps into the race with all major teams represented. Saturn's Fisher and Trent Klasna immediately started rolling with it sensing the opportunity that the break would provide. After 10 more minutes the break split up with five emerging ahead of the remaining seven in the breakaway while the Mercury Team set tempo on the front of the field to protect Chris Wherry's lead in the overall standings. The break contained Chris Baldwin and Glenn Mitchell from Navigators, John Peters from Prime Alliance, John Leiswyn from 7-Up/Nutrafig and Saturn's Fisher.
The break eventually lapped the field with roughly eight laps remaining. Immediately, the teams brought their riders who were in the break to the front right away to set them up for the sprint finish. With four laps to go Saturn took the front to deliver Fisher in the front position going into the last turn. From here he jumped hard, holding off Baldwin for the win with Peters taking third. By lapping the field both Baldwin and Leiswyn moved up slightly in the overall standings, however, Wherry returns home with the overall win.
Carrera Volkswagen Old Mill District Criterium
Results: - Women
1. Sandy Espeseth - Hutch's
2. Kim Bruckner - Saturn
3. Nicole Demars - Hutch's
Final Women's GC
1. Kim Bruckner - Saturn
2. Heather Albert - Goldy's @6:39
3. Leah Goldstein - Hutch's @9:28
1. Chris Fisher - Saturn
2. Chris Baldwin - Navigators
3. John Peters - Prime Alliance
Final Men's Overall
1. Chris Wherry - Mercury
2. Burke Swindlehurst - Navigators - @18 sec
3. Danny Pate - Prime Alliance - @21 sec
Reports courtesy of the Mercury and Saturn cycling teams, and stage profile information courtesy of the official website of the Cascade Cycling Classic.