Tour of the Gila Stage 4: The Downtown Silver City Criterium
The course: 1.08 mile course with four 90 degree turns, with a 60 foot climb
on each lap through the picturesque turn of the century old downtown of Silver
City. The mens race is 40 laps, 43.2 miles and that little climb adds up to 2400
feet of climbing at criterium speeds.
The women's race is 25 laps, 27 miles with 1500 feet of elevation gained.
Consider the altitude, near one mile high elevation, three hard days of racing,
plus head and cross winds over 20 mph, and you begin to understand that today
was a just one more tough day for the riders.
The men's race last year was won by Gord Fraser (Mercury) in a group sprint
after a two man break was absorbed on the final corner in 1:36, this years
result is two minutes slower at 1:38:01. 2002 men's G.C. for the four stages was
9:29:07, with Chris Wherry in the leader's jersey. Going into the Gila Monster,
Drew Miller leads today with a toal time of 9:13:51.
The 2002 Womens race was won by Karen Bockel in 1:07:08, this criterium was
won by Ina Teutenberg in 1:08:29. Considering the wind addition to this years
race it may be the harder race of the two years.
After day 4 of the 2002 edition, Genevieve Jeanson (Rona) led with a total
time: 8:37:21, her nearest rival was the talented Kimberly Bruckner (Saturn).
This year Jeanson also leads but with a time of 9:01:13; in spite of a gentler
and kinder Jeanson her nearest rival is Manon Jutras (Saturn) @ 11:12 and Katrin
Grove (T-Mobile) @ 13:42, Leah Goldstein (Victory Brewing) and Lynn Gaggioli (Velo
Bella) follow at just over 14 minutes. Jeanson at this point is indomitable, she
has grown from le infant terrible to the le petit giant. Unless she cracks on
the Gila Monster (most unlikely) the race is hers to put in her growing
collection of palmares.
Mens Crit Report
The first laps of the mens lap were fast with an early attack by Frank Mapel
(Specialized) and Mike Sayers (Trek/VW) but the wind plus peloton proved
irresistible and they were absorbed. More attacks and breakaway attempts tried,
all were fried in the winds. More attempts were made to defy the wind with no
success. With four laps to go Travis Brown (Trek/VW) and Cody Peterson (Lost
River Cycling) slipped by Healthnet's defences or tired eyes and drove the break
with Tecos Turbo rider Ramos Ramirez. Ramirez mysteriously sat on for a free
ride though neither Peterson or Brown were a threat to Tecos's leader Ubaldo
Mesa (third position on the G.C.). Ramirez, fresh from sitting on, attacked on
the final lap for a bitter and unpopular win, leaving his hard working
breakmates to be relegated to fight on to the finish; a brave fight, only to
have the peloton absorb them as they approached the finish line.
Steve Cate (Mathis Bros) won the field sprint. Drew Miller (Trek/VW), Michael
Sayers ( Health Net), Ubaldo Mesa (Tecos), Gord Fraser (Health Net) finished in
the field I would say comfortably, but it seems none have escaped the rigors of
the last four days.
With about 14 hours to rest and recover for the Gila Monster, the stage is
set for what could be a squeaker of a finish on the roads in the mountains above
Silver City and the finish at Pinos Altos. Either way it will be a classic Gila
finish we see each year in this race. The field of 106 riders has been reduced
to 90, and attrition will be the key word Sunday where the advantage may go to
Tecos and Ubaldo Mesa who has attacked little.
Both the Trek and Healthnet teams have fought a hard and fast race, the
question is will Gord Fraser be able to captain Sayer and Healthnet to a top
podium finish; can Trek VW support Drew Miller to arrive at Pinos Altos to wear
the well deserved Malloit Chartreuse, or will Ubaldo Mesa take the lead to
steal the show. Not to underestimate the top ten, who are separated by few
minutes for a grueling 103 mile stage, all are proven capable climbers could
fill the podium if any of the leaders fail to deliver on the Gila Monster.
At the race site there are links (here)
to riders writing daily reports on their races, let me recommend that you check
out the reports from Scott Price, Frank Maple, Team Diabetic and Pedalling
From Scott Price's (http://www.hlhap.com/mainframe.htm) diary today some good
"I am looking forward to what is my last Tour of the Gila. I have done 7
editions of this epic race and it has been super enjoyable and fulfilling going
out on top thanks to Drew ;-) I have finished a crazy 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th,
7th and 10th overall. My words of advice to all racers is to respect your
competition, speak kind words and praise others efforts and if you are not
enjoying what you are doing then you need to step back, evaluate and find out
what is real and important for you."
"WISH US GOLDEN LEGS!"
I like that, Gentleman and Ladies - "Salut! And legs of gold Sunday."
Men's Stage 4 Results
1. Florencio R. Torres (Tecos Turbos) 1:38:01
2. Steve Cate (Mathis Brothers) @ 0:08
3. Alex Kozlov (Healthnet)
4. Jason Lockesmoe (Healthnet)
5. Russ Langley (Team Snow Valley)
6. Evan Elken (Broadmark Capital)
7. Travis Brown (Trek/VW All-Stars)
8. Nic Brown (LeMond Fitness/Captain Cra-Z)
9. Cody Peterson (Lost River Cycling) 0:14
10. Michael Lange (Back Yard Burgers) 0:20
Mens G.C. after Stage 4
1. Drew Miller (Trek/VW All-Stars) 9:13:51
2. Michael Sayers (Health Net) @ 0:31
3. Ubaldo Mesa Estepa (Tecos Turbos) @ 1:19
4. Gord Fraser (Health Net) @ 1:39
5. Blake Caldwell (5280/Subaru) @ 1:48
6. Todd Wells (Hyundai Mongoose) 1:49
7. Andreas Hestler (Canadian National Team) 2:39
8. Michael Ley (Team Rio Grande) @ 2:51
9. Nic Brown (LeMond Fitness/Captain Cra-Z) @ 2:56
10. Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (RLX Ralph Loren) @ 3:01
Womens Crit Report
25 laps of headwinds...
The fourth stage of the Tour of the Gila was a downtown criterium. A long
time favorite of the locals, speaking with them will bring up stories from the
17 years this race has been running of athletes who are now legends in the
sport. With bright blue skies and gusty winds, today's crowds lined the streets,
the BBQs were fired up, the beer chilled, and the lawn chairs out to cheer for
the over 700 riders who tackle the challenging course at 6,000 feet.
Unlike many criteriums, this one is a humbling experience for many. With a
steep, angry little hill on the back side of the course and strong, gusty winds,
this criterium is not a typical sprinter's race. With the overall set in the
women's race, the only thing up for grabs was a stage win. Race Leader Genevieve
Jeanson had won every stage up until today and there were some eagerness in the
peloton to ensure she did not sweep the stage race podiums.
Determined to win this stage, Ina Teutenberg launched the hostilities after
two of the 20 laps. Susan Haywood and Meshy Holt took her wheel and the three of
them created a gap of over a minute. A few laps later Jeanson bridged to the
break as the main field let the gap increase.
With one lap to go, Jeanson could be seen at the front forcing a high pace.
However, Teutenberg and Haywood were expecting an attack and were able to go
with it. From there, Haywood countered taking Teutenberg with her. Coming around
the final corner it was Haywood in the lead, but with two pedal strokes, the
powerful Teutenberg was clear with a substantial gap which she held to the
finish. Teutenberg won the sprint. When the pack crossed the finish line,
Katrina Grove (T Mobile) outsprinted Karen Bockel (RONA/Esker) and Manon Jutras
[Thanks to Giana Roberge (Saturn) and Daniel LaRouche (RONA/Esker).]
Women's Stage 4 Results
1. Ina Teutenberg Saturn 1:08:29
2. Susan Haywood (T-Mobile)
3. Melissa Holt (Rona/Esker)
4. Genevieve Jeanson (Rona/Esker) @ :14
5. Katrina Grove (T-Mobile) @ 1:46
6. Karen Bockel (Rona/Esker)
7. Manon Jutras (Saturn) @ 1:50
8. Kri Scheffenacker (Team Snow Valley) @2:05
9. Amy Moore (Saturn)
10. Maatje Benassi (ICO)
Womens G.C. after Stage 4
1. Genevieve Jeanson (RONA/ Esker) 9:01:13
2. Manon Jutras (Saturn Cycling Team) @ 11:12
3. Katrina Grove (T-Mobile) @ 13:42
4. Leah Goldstein (Victory Brewing) @ 14:33
5. Lynn Gaggioli (Velo Bella) @ 14:59
6. Susan Haywood (T - Mobile) @ 17:18
7. Karen Bockel (RONA/ Esker) @ 17:44
8. Rhonda Quick (Vaniqa/Red S.) @ 18:05
9. Jennifer Wilson (Mtn. Velo/Supergo) @ 19:43
10. Kiara Bisaro (Canadian National Team) @ 19:47
All photos courtesy
Gila Wilderness dot.com
No question about what the crit will bring...
The iron women up the hill
The ladies Maillot Chartreuse pushing it
The men fight their crit hill
Leader's jersey Drew Miller - Trek/VW All-Stars