Tour of California Navigators Report Stage 7 Finale
"I just attacked from 3k into it, to see what I could
do. No one was there to start with, but then three guys came across. I think
that crash helped a bit. It was a good tour for the team, and I got my mug on TV
a fair bit, which is nice,"
By Chris G. Baldwin
Navigators Insurance rider Glen Chadwick rolled off the front of the peloton
in the first three kilometers of today's final stage of the Tour of California
and never looked back. Three other riders joined him in the move, taking turns
at the front of a very small paceline to hold a steady gap until just five
kilometers from the finish. For this effort, and for the next 112 kilometers in
a breakaway that was at once more than six minutes ahead of the peloton,
Chadwick was named Most Aggressive Rider for the stage.
The escapees Stage 7 Lap 4
The break came early in the race, and a crash just after Glen's attack kept
the pack from organizing a chase until the fifth of ten laps. Unfortunately for
the Navigators, Phil Zajicek was injured in the spill and abandoned the race.
Zajicek was in 15th before he left the course, the highest-placed American-based
domestic rider on G.C.
The Navigators Insurance Cycling team is the
only Continental Pro squad in the United States with an international racing
calendar and an international lineup. In the Tour of California the Navigators
brought two Russians, two Australians, a Canadian, the Irish national champion,
a Ukrainian and one American to the start.
Chadwick in the break Lap 7
just attacked from 3k into it, to see what I could do. No one was there to start
with, but then three guys came across. I think that crash helped a bit. We all
worked pretty good together on the road. We all shared, and at the sprints just
rolled through, which is better than killing ourselves. It was a good tour for
the team, and I got my mug on TV a fair bit, which is nice," said Chadwick.
The Rockhampton, Australia native lives in Belgium and is in his first year
with the Navigators Insurance Cycling team. He flies back home tomorrow and will
most likely race next in the Tour of West Flanders, a three-day stage race.
Chadwick celebrates Most Aggressive Rider for stage 7
"I think the forecast is snow, so I don't know how much of that tour we'll be
doing. After a week of sunshine like this it's going to be a shock to the
system," said Chadwick.
Zajicek was scraped up in the crash and had bandages on his abdomen and hands
after the race. He was disappointed to come out of the Tour of California,
especially after riding so well through the week. The crash was an unfortunate
mishap at 35mph when another rider hit a pothole and smashed his bicycle.
Zajicek said it happened fast, and that he was picking himself up off the ground
in an instant, nearly unaware that he had gone down in the first place.
All photos c.