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Hyundai Sea Otter Classic - Day 3 - Final Updated
 
By Jaime Nichols
Date: 4/17/2004
Hyundai Sea Otter Classic - Day 3 - Final Updated
 

Chris Horner rode a brilliant race to take the stage today and take home the GC victory at the 15th Hyundai Sea Otter Classic. Daily Peloton favorite Mike "So Pro" Jones was right behind Horner, showing that his ride yesterday was no fluke, and taking second on today's stage. That ride should be good enough to put Jones on the second step of the final podium in Monterey.

Jones was overjoyed and gave credit to his team. Next stop for Horner? Georgia, where he is "stoked to ride with Lance and the boys."


General Report

MONTEREY, Calif. (April 17, 2004) – The Hyundai Sea Otter Classic bustled today, as a large crowd was treated to exciting racing and the festive atmosphere of North America’s greatest cycling festival. Cycling fans and enthusiasts of all ages were able to witness many of the world’s top cyclists competing in the PlayStation 2 MTB Stage Race, the SRAM Dirt Jumping Contest, the Elite Road Stage Race, and the Downhill Domination Dual Slalom.

The PlayStation 2 MTB Stage continued today with its third stage of four, the Short Track. The men's race boasted one of the strongest fields ever to be assembled at Sea Otter, including current world cross-country champion Filip Meirhaeghe (Specialized) of Belgium. Meirhaeghe claimed victory in the short track with a gap off the front. German Karl Platt (Rocky Mountain-Business Objects) attacked in the final laps of the race and came in second. 2001 and 2002 world champion and two-time defending Sea Otter champion Roland Green (Trek-Volkswagen) rounded out the top three.

In the women’s Short Track, Melanie McQuaid of Victoria, B.C. (Ford Racing) led the charge until the final lap. In a major attack, 2001 world champion Alison Dunlap (Luna Women’s MTB Team) charged in the last lap and surged past McQuaid before the final turn. It was a sweet victory for Dunlap, who placed second in the time trial Friday due to a technical difficulty. Dunlap has secured the top women’s standing in the stage race going into the final stage, where she will be looking for a third-straight Sea Otter title.

The Downhill Domination Dual Slalom saw a wave of international riders step up to the podium at North America’s greatest cycling festival. Australia swept the men’s top 3, with Mick Hannah (Haro/Adidas) taking his first win of the season in the Downhill Domination Dual Slalom, beating compatriots Wade Bootes (Trek-Volkswagen) and Nathan Rennie (Santa Cruz Syndicate/Troy Lee). In the women’s race, France’s Sabrina Jonnier (Intense Cycles) rode flawlessly to first place, with another Australian, Jamis Cycles’ Katrina Miller placing second. The lone American to achieve a top 3 result was Tara Llanes (Giant-Pearl Izumi).

The Elite Road Stage Race at the Hyundai Sea Otter Classic concluded on Saturday with a 100 mile road race for pro men and women on a scenic course Carmel and Salinas valleys. Lyne Bessette (Quark) continued her domination of the women's southern Californian spring racing scene, adding the Hyundai Sea Otter title to the Pomona Valley Stage Race and Redlands Classic wins she posted over the past four weeks. Chris Horner (Webcor) matched his win streak by riding away from the field in the final six miles to snatch the overall title from stage two winner Trent Klasna (Sierra Nevada).

In a transition found only at the Hyundai Sea Otter Classic, the crowd’s focus shifted from endurance sports to action sports for the day’s final event, the SRAM Dirt Jump Contest. As the sun set over the Monterey Peninsula, John Jesme (Ellsworth Bicycles) took top honors after receiving a perfect score on a no-footer backflip on his final jump. Drawing the greatest response from the crowd was 17-year-old Paul Basagoitia who almost landed a nearly unheard-of backflip tailwhip.

Sunday’s program will feature two pro events in the Downhill Domination Gravity Omnium, the final stage of the PlayStation 2 MTB Stage Race, family activities like the Kids’ Bike Rodeo, and the amateur cross country mountain bike race, which draws the largest field of any event at the Hyundai Sea Otter Classic.

Road Racing

Horner, Bessette Maintain California Win Streak at Hyundai Sea Otter Classic

MONTEREY, Calif. (April 17, 2004) – The Elite Road Stage Race at the Hyundai Sea Otter Classic concluded on Saturday with a 100 mile road race for the pro men and women. Lyne Bessette (Quark) continued her domination of the women's southern Californian spring racing scene, adding the Hyundai Sea Otter title to the Pomona and Redlands wins she posted over the past four weeks. Chris Horner (Webcor) matched her win streak by riding away from the field in the final six miles to snatch the overall title from stage two winner Trent Klasna (Sierra Nevada).

The final stage of the Elite Road Race sends the pros out of the Laguna Seca Recreation Area on a long loop south through the Carmel and Salinas valleys. The riders head back into Laguna Seca through theFort Ord recreation area, with a final climb back into the racetrack, which usually breaks the field apart. The men added three laps on the Laguna Seca circuit to finish off their race.

Wind was the biggest factor the riders faced, after the distance. A headwind for the final 50 miles discouraged any breakaway attempts, and both the men’s and women’s fields entered the venue as large packs. Bessette started the stage with a two second margin over Tina Pic (Genesis Scuba), and three seconds ahead of Kristin Armstrong (T-Mobile). The Canadian had to make sure that she finished ahead of both riders, since a first place result by either one, combined with the time bonuses awarded, may have leapfrogged them into the winner's jersey.

Christine Thorburn (Webcor) initiated what proved to be the decisive move, attacking early in the climb. She was quickly joined by by Bessette and Armstrong, with only second place Pic missing the boat. Thorburn had the most to gain from the break, since she could potentially vault into third place. Bessette waited until the final 500 feet to launch a perfectly timed attack and take her second consecutive stage, locking up the overall title with her victory. Armstrong came in second, with Thorburn just behind.

Thorburn was successful in her bid for a podium spot in the overall results, moving into third behind Armstrong. Tina Pic dropped to fourth in the overall standings, but held onto the Points Jersey.

Trent Klasna's Sierra Nevada team mates did an excellent job of controlling the men's field until the final few miles, when Horner went to the front. The Webcor rider launched an attack on the finishing circuit that no one could respond to, winning by one minute and 25 seconds. Health Net-Maxxis' Mike Jones, second to Klasna in stage two, and second overall in the standings, made a valiant effort, which netted him second place for the stage, and cemented his overall result. Horner's team mate Charles Dionne finished third in the stage, and took third overall, assuring Webcor of the Team title as well. Dionne also won the Points Jersey.

Chris Horner: "I tried to attack on the first climb, but my legs weren't quite there. Once we got onto the Laguna Seca climb, I tried again, and my legs were back, the form was there. I was confident that I could get the time I needed."

Mike Jones: "I have a friend back home, Dave, with cancer. I thought a lot about him today. Dave is one of my biggest fans, I think about him and push harder on the hills."

Lyne Bessette: "It was so windy that it is understandable that no one wanted to attack. When we got into the circuit people started trying stuff. It was up to others to go, so I just waited for someone else to go and got on."

Kristin Armstrong: "When we got into the base things started to happen. Christine attacked, and Lyne and I countered at the same time."

Christine Thorburn: "I had to be the one to attack, since I'm the one who had to make up time. I attacked on the bottom quarter of the climb. I felt I had a shot in taking Tina's place, so I just had to drive the pace for the line."

Men's Stage Three Results

1  Horner Chris Webcor USA 4:24:49
2  Jones Michael Health Net USA at 1:25
3 Dionne Charles Webcor CAN 1:52
4  Jones Brice Health Net USA  m.t.
5 Lokkesmoe Jason Health Net USA  m.t.
6  Ayestaran Imanol Webcor ESP m.t.
7 Kelly John Webcor USA :56
8  Lange Cory Canadian National Team CAN  m.t.
9 Terlecki Todd La Grange USA m.t.
10  Wohlberg Eric Sierra Nevada CAN  m.t.

Men's Final General Classification

1 Horner Chris Webcor USA 6:55:25
2 Jones Michael Health Net USA at :50
3 Dionne Charles Webcor CAN 1:34
4 Lokkesmoe Jason Health Net USA 1:36
5  Wohlberg Eric Sierra Nevada CAN 1:45
6  Ayestaran Imanol Webcor ESP 2:00
7  Lange Cory Canadian National Team CAN 2:02
8  Frattini Davide Team Monex ITA 2:03
9  Perras Dominique Canadian National Team CAN 2:09
10  Jones Brice Health Net USA 2:14

Points Competition: Charles Dionne - Webcor Builders
Overall Team Classification: Webcor Builders

Women's Stage 3 Results

1 BESSETTE, Lyne CAN QRK 5:22:14
2 ARMSTRONG, Kristin USA TMP m.t.
3 THORBURN, Christine USA WCT m.t.
4 EYERMAN, Jenny USA RED :57
5  GONZALEZ DE FERRAT, MEX VBA m.t.
6  MAYOLO-PIC, Tina USA GEN m.t.
7  LEMIEUX, Audrey CAN QRK m.t.
8 BOCKEL, Karen GER TDS m.t.
9  MILLER, Meredith USA TSA m.t.
10  FISCHER-ANDERSEN, M DEN TSA m.t.

Women's Final General Classification

1 BESSETTE, Lyne CAN QRK 7:09:18
2 ARMSTRONG, Kristin USA TMP :07
3 THORBURN, Christine USA WCT :28
4 MAYOLO-PIC, Tina USA GEN 1:09
5 PETERS, Stacey USA TMP 1:39
6 FRANGES, Lauren USA VIC 1:41
7 HOLDEN, Mari USA TMP 1:43
8 POWERS, Catherine USA GRA 1:44
9  EYERMAN, Jenny USA RED 1:45
10 MIRABELLA, Erin USA RED 1:47

Special thanks to Jack "I think I just saw Bob Roll" Girdis for the timely results earlier today.

 
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