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Commerce Bank Triple Crown - Lehigh Valley Classic Photos
 
By Staff
Date: 6/5/2008
Commerce Bank Triple Crown - Lehigh Valley Classic Photos
 

Commerce Bank Triple Crown - Lehigh Valley Classic
Amore Vita/McDonald's Yuri Metlushenko surprises in the opening race of the series.

Ukraine’s Yuri Metlushenko scored a razor-thin sprint win in Tuesday’s Commerce Bank Lehigh Valley Classic. Aussie Karl Menzies (Health Net-Maxxis) was second by half a tire width at the opening round of the 2008 Commerce Bank Triple Crown of Cycling, with American Brad Huff (Jelly Belly) trailing home in third.


Yuri Metlushenko sprints out of the field for the win. Photo © 2008 Action Images

Metlushenko’s win came at the end of a12-lap, 85-mile battle on the rolling roads of Allentown, Pa., the Keystone state’s third largest city. This was the first running of the Lehigh event, which replaced the former Triple Crown series opener in Lancaster. The new-for-2008 circuit traced a rectangular path from downtown Allentown, across the Little Lehigh River, and up the scenic and rolling Lehigh Parkway before returning downtown via West Hamilton Street. While by no means a climber’s course, the 7.1-mile circuit tested riders with a steady stream of punchy, leg-sapping rollers. Still, when the endgame unfolded, it was the fast men taking center stage.


The peloton winds it’s way through the park at speed.
Photo © 2008 Action Images

“You really had to pay attention the whole day,” explained Huff, who after the Triple Crown series will head to Los Angeles in hopes of qualifying for the U.S. Olympic track cycling team. “Speeds were high all day. This was really a power man’s race. The sprint was really fast, but the hill before it really shook things up a little. People were trying to go from a long way out.”


Tyler Wren (Colavita/Sutter Home) takes an ill fated flyer early in the race. Photo © 2008 Action Images

Indeed, pre-race favorites such as Ivan Dominguez (Toyota-United) and Rock Racing’s Fred Rodriguez were non-factors in the final outcome, while the heretofore unknown Metlushenko was thrusting his hands in the air in triumph. That final move almost cost the Amore & Vita-McDonald’s rider the win, as Menzies came oh-so-close to nipping him at the line. “I was sure I would win and was thinking about making a good finish line picture,” recalled Metlushenko, who has a large scar near his right eye that belies his career as a bike racer. “But then I got scared when I saw how close it is. I won’t ever do that again.”


Attacks were the order of the day... Photo © 2008 Action Images

The first half of the Lehigh race was marked by a series of repeated, but fruitless attacks. Among the riders trying escape at various times were Bissell’s Aaron Olson, Brian Jensen (Team Successful Living), Pennsylvanian Kyle Wamsley (Colavita-Sutter Home), Jason Donald (Slipstream-Chipotle) and Colavita’s Tyler Wren. None could make their moves stick for any significant length of time, and the race was all back together at the halfway point.


Kelly Benefit Strategies rider leads an escape. Photo © 2008 Action Images

The first real move of consequence came during lap 7 when Jeff Louder (BMC Racing), Frank Pipp (Health Net-Maxxis), Luis Romero (Colavita-Sutter Home), and Canadian strongman Svein Tuft (Symmetrics) took off. They quickly rolled up a 50-second advantage, with Toyota-United’s Ivan Stevic, Slipstream’s Mike Friedman and Alberto Curtolo (Liquigas) all trying to bridge across. The bunch was having none of the second move, and the chasers were soon back in the field.

The four escapees continued to work off the front during the next four laps, but their advantage never exceeded a minute, and it was clear the sprinters’ team was in control. The break eventually split up, with Pipp and Tuft pushing ahead, while Louder and Romero drifted back.

The move was then momentarily re-energized when seven new riders pulled off the front of the field and bridged up, creating a dangerous lead group that included Ivan Stevic (Toyota-United), Kasper Klostergaard (Team CSC), Bernardo Tepoz (Tecos-Trek), Martijn Maaskant (Slipstream-Chipotle), John Murphy (Health Net-Maxxis), Eric Baumann (Team Sparkasse), Glen Chadwick (Team Type 1), Tuft (Symmetrics) and Romero. But the field was chasing hard and the race was all together early in the final lap.


The peloton lines out as another break attempts an escape.
Photo © 2008 Action Images

Several more attacks and counter attacks ensued, including one final move with Pipp and Dominique Rollin (Toyota-United). But they were snowed under on the final trip up the circuit’s short climb, setting things up for a furious dash to the finish.

“I’m not sure where he came from,” admitted Menzies of the race’s final 200 meters. “I had two teammates leading me out perfectly, but I had to wait to make sure Huff didn’t come over the top of me. Then Uri came by. At the finish I knew I was coming quicker and saw him pause and throw up arms, so I gave a throw and hoped I could get him.” It was a strategy that came up about a half inch short.


Podium: Karl Menzies, Yuri Metlushenko, and Brad Huff.
Photo © 2008 Action Images

Triple Crown Lehigh Valley Classic
85 miles - 3:05:35

1 METLUSHENKO, Yuri Amore & Vita-McDonalds 3:05:35
2 MENZIES, Karl Health NEt p/b Maxxis 95 3:05:35
3 HUFF, Brad Jelly Belly 106 3:05:35


Yuri Metlushenko (Amore & Vita-McDonalds) receives a congratulatory hug from his director. Photo © 2008 Action Images

4 CANDELARIO, Alex Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 123 3:05:35
5 BAUMANN, Eric Team Sparkasse 181 3:05:35
6 RODRIGUEZ, Fred Rock Racing 156 3:05:35
7 VOGELS, Hendricus Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 247 3:05:35
8 FARRAR, Tyler Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 44 3:05:35
9 EISEL, Bernhard Team High Road 1 3:05:35
10 PINFOLD, Andrew Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 165 3:05:35
11 BORRAJO, Anibal Colavita-Sutter Home 76 3:05:35
12 FALCON, Yosvany Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 232 3:05:35
13 MACIAS, Luis Tecos - Trek 211 3:05:35
14 KOBZARENKO, Valeriy Team Type 1 206 3:05:35
15 CORIONI, Claudio Liquigas 22 3:05:35
16 BROOKS, Ben Team Type 1 202 3:05:35
17 WALTERS, Mark Team RACE Pro 171 3:05:35
18 GUNN, Curtis Team Successfulliving 192 3:05:35
19 OYARZUN, Carlos Tecos - Trek 216 3:05:35
20 SHIRLEY, Neil Jittery Joe's 112 3:05:35
21 CANTWELL, Jonathan Jittery Joe's 115 3:05:35
22 MILNE, Shawn Team Type 1 207 3:05:35
23 PARRA, John Fredy Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 235 3:05:35
24 CRUZ, Antonio BMC Racing 31 3:05:35
25 ALDAPE, Moises Team Type 1 201 3:05:35
26 MAMOS, Philipp Team Sparkasse 183 3:05:35
27 BRESCHEL, Matti Team CSC 15 3:05:35
28 MEIER, Christian Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 166 3:05:35
29 STEWART, Jackson BMC Racing 37 3:05:35
30 KING, Edward Bissell Pro Cycling Team 67 3:05:35
31 TALANSKY, Andrew Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 237 3:05:35
32 MARTINEZ, Miguel Amore & Vita-McDonalds Pro Cyc 52 3:05:35
33 RYTLEWSKI, Jacob Rite Aid Pro Cycling p/b Shebe 147 3:05:35
34 JONES, Christopher Team Type 1 205 3:05:35
35 GRABINGER, Michael Team Successfulliving 195 3:05:35
36 HEKMAN, Mark Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 233 3:05:35
37 FRATTINI, Davide Colavita-Sutter Home 78 3:05:35
38 ROTH, Ryan Team RACE Pro 172 3:05:35
39 SEVILLA, Oscar Rock Racing 157 3:05:35
40 BARRILLEAUX, Jared Jittery Joe's 118 3:05:35
41 POWER, Ciaran Pezula Racing 132 3:05:35
42 WOHLBERG, Eric Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 162 3:05:35
43 WAMSLEY, Kyle Colavita-Sutter Home 77 3:05:35
44 EVANS, Cameron Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 167 3:05:35
45 LILL, Darren BMC Racing 34 3:05:35
46 LADINO, Gregorio Tecos - Trek 217 3:05:35
47 MATAMOROS, Francisco Tecos - Trek 213 3:05:35
48 HARTLEY, Chad Jittery Joe's 117 3:05:35
49 HAMMOND, Roger Team High Road 3 3:05:35
50 CHADWICK, Glen Team Type 1 204 3:05:35
51 WYSS, Danilo BMC Racing 32 3:05:35
52 PENA, Victor Hugo Rock Racing 155 3:05:35
53 CALABRIA, Fabio Team Type 1 203 3:05:35
54 JENSEN, Brian Team Successfulliving 193 3:05:35
55 REYNES MIMO, Vicente Team High Road 7 3:05:35
56 HAMILTON, Tyler Rock Racing 153 3:05:35
57 SUTHERLAND, Rory Health NEt p/b Maxxis 91 3:05:35
58 COLEX, Bernardo Tecos - Trek 212 3:05:35
59 GOSS, Matthew Team CSC 14 3:05:35
60 WHERRY, Christopher Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 248 3:05:35
61 JENNINGS, Cameron Pezula Racing 133 3:05:35
62 KLOSTERGAARD, Kasper Team CSC 11 3:05:35
63 ENGLAND, Richard Bissell Pro Cycling Team 66 3:05:35
64 SCHILLINGER , Andreas Team Sparkasse 185 3:05:35
65 SCHLER , Tilo Team Sparkasse 187 3:05:35
66 ROLLIN, Dominique Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 245 3:05:35
67 BAJADALI, Andrew Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 121 3:05:35
68 WACKERNAGEL , Lars Team Sparkasse 186 3:05:35
69 MURPHY, Jonn Health NEt p/b Maxxis 97 3:06:13
70 TUFT, Svein Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 161 3:06:15
71 WISCOVITCH, Jeremiah Rock Racing 158 3:06:17
72 DURANGO, John Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 231 3:06:17
73 VENNELL, Jeremy Bissell Pro Cycling Team 65 3:06:20
74 TOLLESON, Taylor BMC Racing 36 3:06:23
75 TRAVIESO, Frank Toshiba - Santo p/b Herbalife 236 3:06:23
76 RANDELL, Andrew Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 164 3:06:38
77 O'LOUGHLIN, David Pezula Racing 131 3:06:41
78 FREY , Sebastian Team Sparkasse 188 3:06:50
79 HAEDO, Lucas Colavita-Sutter Home 73 3:07:03
80 WILSON, Matt Team Type 1 208 3:07:03
81 JOHNSON, Tim Health NEt p/b Maxxis 92 3:07:03
82 BODNAR, Maciej Liquigas 21 3:07:10
83 O'BEE, Kirk Health NEt p/b Maxxis 98 3:07:17
84 ELKEN, Evan Jittery Joe's 113 3:07:17
85 SANTAROMITA, Ivan Liquigas 25 3:07:17
86 FRANZOI, Enrico Liquigas 24 3:07:17
87 BARLEVAV, Erik TIME Pro Cycling 223 3:07:27
88 DONALD, Jason Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 43 3:07:27
89 MUMFORD, Reid Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 127 3:07:32
90 MYERSON, Adam TIME Pro Cycling 224 3:07:40
91 FRIEDMAN, Michael Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 45 3:07:45
92 FRISCHKORN, William Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 46 3:07:45
93 JACQUES-MAYNES, Benjamin Bissell Pro Cycling Team 61 3:07:45
94 STEVIC, Ivan Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 246 3:07:45
95 DOMINGUEZ, Ivan Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 243 3:07:45
96 MAASKANT, Martijn Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 47 3:07:45
97 CALDWELL, Blake Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 48 3:07:45
98 SOLADAY, Thomas TIME Pro Cycling 226 3:07:51
99 MANION, Caleb Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 244 3:07:51
100 RICE, Matthew Jelly Belly 102 3:07:51
101 GENG, Richard Rite Aid Pro Cycling p/b Shebe 142 3:08:15
102 COZZA, Steven Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 42 3:08:15
103 DEVINE, John Team High Road 8 3:08:15
104 VAN ULDEN, Bernard Jelly Belly 107 3:08:15
105 KING, Benjamin Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 125 3:08:15
106 GUTTENPLAN, David TIME Pro Cycling 228 3:08:15
107 BAHATI, Rahsaan Rock Racing 151 3:08:15
108 ERKER, Jacob Symmetrics Professional Cyclin 168 3:08:15
109 HENRY, Timothy Jittery Joe's 114 3:08:15
110 NANKERVIS, Tommy DLP Racing 88 3:08:15
111 BLACKGROVE, Heath Toyota-United Pro Cycling Team 242 3:08:15
112 PELTONEN, Garrett Bissell Pro Cycling Team 63 3:08:15
113 PARISIEN, Franois Team RACE Pro 176 3:08:15
114 BACKSTEDT, Magnus Slipstream/Chipotie p/b H3O 41 3:08:15
115 JACKSON, Scott DLP Racing 85 3:08:15
116 ZWIZANSKI, Scott Bissell Pro Cycling Team 64 3:08:15
117 GILBERT, Martin Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 124 3:08:15
118 LACOMBE, Keven Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 126 3:08:15
119 SUNDT, Jonathan Kelly Benefit Strategies/Medif 128 3:10:29
120 GRITTERS, Kyle Health NEt p/b Maxxis 96 3:10:29
121 OLSON, Aaron Bissell Pro Cycling Team 62 3:11:01
122 TUCKERMAN, Aaron Jelly Belly 103 3:11:01
123 SIMES, Jackie TIME Pro Cycling 221 3:11:01
124 STEVENSON, Cody Jittery Joe's 116 3:11:01
125 STEVENSON, Michael Amore & Vita-McDonalds Pro Cyc 56 3:11:01

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