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Powers and Young ride away with criterium nationals
 
By Imelda March
Date: 7/29/2013
Powers and Young ride away with criterium nationals
 
The 2013 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships crowned the professional men’s and women’s criterium national championships in High Point, N.C., on Saturday evening.

The two winners, Alison Powers (Pinecliffe, Colo./NOW and Novartis for MS) and Eric Young (Boulder, Colo./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies), won their respective races in different ways.

Approximately 10 minutes into the women’s race, Powers and Amanda Miller (Fort Collins, Colo./Team TIBCO-To the Top) broke away from the field. Working together, the two strong women built a lead that approached 30 seconds at certain stages of the 90-minute contest.

With about eight laps remaining in the race, Erica Allar (Tucson, Ariz./CARE4CYCLING powered by Solomon Corp) attempted to bridge to the leaders, but was unable to reel them in. Allar’s move did cause the peloton to react as several counterattacks were launched and the gap to the leaders came down.

Miller and Powers resisted the charging peloton and tried to hold their lead. With about 400 meters remaining in the race, Powers attacked Miller and outlasted Miller and the hard-charging field to claim the top step of the podium. Miller finished second and the defending national champion, Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Cedar Springs, Mich./Fearless Femme p/b Pure Energy Vie13), placed third.

“Amanda wanted to sit on a little bit,” Powers, who finished third in the road race and time trial in Chattanooga at the 2013 Volkswagen USA Cycling Professional Road & Time Trial National Championships, said. “I said, 'No, you promised you'd work to the line.' It gave me just enough recovery on this downhill to be able to punch it hard. I have a little more power. This drag, it felt like forever, but I knew slightly uphill with a headwind favored me over her, so I had to go for it. “To be national champion, is amazing,” Powers continued, “It's the best of the country. It's the best of all the racers in USA Cycling. It's the best of the best.”

The eight-corner, downtown course spanning 1.35 miles with a small hill on the backside endured rain in the early part of the women’s race. The moisture left the course wet, forcing the riders to use caution in the corners. The rain stopped in the late stages of the professional women's race.

The 24-year-old Young, who topped the pro men’s criterium podium in 2011 in Grand Rapids, emerged from a field sprint to collect his second professional men’s criterium national championship in three years. The defending professional men’s criterium national champion, Ken Hanson (Santa Barbara, Calif./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies), finished second in the sprint while Jacob Keough (Sandwich, Mass./UnitedHealthcare) collected the bronze medal.

In the early part of the men’s 110-minute race, a group of five riders - Michael Friedman (Superior, Colo./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies), Christopher Uberti (Greenville, S.C./Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis), Keil Reijnen (Boulder, Colo./UnitedHealthcare), Frank Pipp (Longmont, Colo./Bissell Pro Cycling) and Sean Mazich (San Diego, Calif./Jelly Belly Cycling) – opened a lead which grew to as large as 30 seconds. Four of the five riders returned to the field, but Uberti stayed away. Uberti, riding alone, grew his lead to over one minute for approximately 25 minutes of the race.

With the riders from UnitedHealthcare on the front of the peloton, Scott Zwizanski (West Chester, Pa./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) attacked and quickly caught Uberti with six laps remaining in the race. Zwizanski was caught by the peloton with just over three laps remaining in the race, bringing the field back together for the finale.

“I was right on Alex Candelario's (Bend, Ore./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) wheel. He helped navigate me through the whole backside of the course. We just came through the last couple corners on the perfect line. Into the last corner, I was the guy with the momentum going into the low riser going into the finish. A finish like this, with an uphill crest like this, if you have the momentum and a strong kick, you just go away with the win. That's exactly what happened. It was awesome.”

For the first time since 2010, the professional women’s criterium national title was awarded in conjunction with the professional men’s national title. As the centerpiece of the High Point Cycling Classic, the professional criterium national championships featured an equal prize purse, $10,000, for the men and women for the first time in the history of the event.

For complete details on this event, including a complete schedule, results, course maps and a photo gallery, please visit the event web site. Visit #CritNats to view all the chatter about the event.

2013 USA Cycling Professional Criterium National Championships
High Point, North Carolina
July 27, 2013

WOMEN

1. Alison Powers Pinecliffe, CO NOW and Novartis for MS
2. Amanda Miller Fort Collins, CO Team TIBCO/ To the Top
3. Theresa Cliff-Ryan Cedar Springs, MI Fearless Femme p/b Pure Energy Cycling-Vie 13
4. Lauren Hall Dolores, CO Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies
5. Lauren Stephens Dallas, TX Team TIBCO/ To the Top
6. Amy Cutler North Bergen, NJ FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore
7. Mary Maroon Sacramento, CA SBRacing
8. Jennifer Purcell Austin, TX Colavita-Fine Cooking
9. Samantha Schneider Milwaukee, WI Team TIBCO/ To the Top
10 Meredith Miller Boulder, CO Team TIBCO/ To the Top
11 Alexis Ryan Ventura, CA NOW and Novartis for MS
12 Morgan Patton Athens, GA Team Novo Nordisk
13 Amy Phillips Chattanooga, TN Hub Endurance Women's Cycling Team
14 Mary Zider Billerica, MA Colavita-Fine Cooking
15 Amy McGuire Jamaica Plain, MA FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore
16. Devon Gorry Logan, UT NOW and Novartis for MS
17 Tina Pic Hailey, ID Colavita-Fine Cooking
18 Laura Van Gilder Cresco, PA Mellow Mushroom Racing
19 Anna Sanders Phoenix, AZ FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore
20 Erica Allar Tucson, AZ CARE4CYCLING powered by Solomon Corp

MEN

1. Eric Young Boulder, CO Team Optum
2. Kenneth Hanson San Diego, CA Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies
3. Jacob Keough Sandwich, MA UnitedHealthcare
4. John Murphy Asheville, NC UnitedHealthcare
5. Charles Huff Springfield, MO Jelly Belly Cycling
6. Andrew Dahlheim Austin, TX Bissell Cycling
7. Shane Kline Bally, PA Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis
8. Sean Mazich San Diego, CA Jelly Belly Cycling
9. Frank Travieso Athens, GA Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis
10 Freddie Rodriguez Berkeley, CA Jelly Belly Cycling
11 Isaac Howe Burlington, VT Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis
12 Alexander Candelario Bend, OR Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies
13 Luke Keough Sandwich, MA UnitedHealthcare
14 Thomas Brown Athens, GA Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis
15 K Frank Pipp Longmont, CO Bissell Cycling
16 Adam Myerson Dorchester, MA Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis
17 Mac Brennan East Jordan, MI Bissell Cycling
18 Branden Russell Enumclaw WA Team Novo Nordisk
19 Bradley White Holland, MI UnitedHealthcare
20 Jeremy Powers Easthampton, MA Jelly Belly Cycling

Please visit USA Cycling National Criterium Championships - Full Results and USA Cycling Photo Gallery for further information about the event.

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