Highland (California): Chris Horner of Prime Alliance won his second stage in
as many days at the Redlands Bicycle Classic, while Saturn's Lyne
Bessette took a few seconds off of Rona's Geneviève Jeanson's lead.
Generally thought as a good stage for sprinters and non-GC
contenders, the Highland Circuit Race became a major war for the
yellow jersey in both the men's and women's races.
In the men's race, Trent Klasna started a breakaway with about 12
laps to go of the 19-lap race. His 3 man group didn't look too
serious until his teammate Harm Jansen bridged the gap a couple of
laps later. With the two working together along with US Postal's Dave
Zabriske and Mercury's Mike Sayers the group was able to gain 45
seconds, and for most of the race it seemed as though it was going to
stay that way. The group still had more than 30 seconds with two laps
remaining when the chase group put the hammer down, catching the
breakaway with one lap to go. It was then that race leader Horner was
able to grab the wheel of Sayers up the final climb and come around
him to win going away.
"My team was great today," said Horner, "I didn't have to do any real
work until the end. I thought we would catch the break earlier. I was
a little worried. With 2 laps to go I told Danny (teammate Danny
Pate) to sell out, figuring if he could bring me back to 10 or 20
seconds I could bridge myself. I owe the day to Danny."
Klasna was understandably disappointed, "Yeah, I'm disappointed, but
I still feel great." He stated, " With 3 or 4 laps to go I thought
for sure we could hold it."
The women's race was every bit as exciting as Team USA's Mari Holden
took off on a solo breakaway with 6 laps to go. "I saw Saturn and
Rona looking at each other and just decided to go." She shrugged, "It
didn't quite workout, but almost."
Her advantage went to more than 2 minutes when race leader Jeanson
decided it was too much and left the lead bunch, shadowed by
Bessette. "When she attacked nobody wanted to chase her. But when she
got 2 minutes it became scary because she is a very good rider,"
commented Jeanson, "so we decided to go on the offensive game."
The two pulled back over a minute over the last two laps and passed
the laboring Holden just before the finish, where a fresh-looking
Bessette easily sprinted away for the win. "My job today was to hide
and to rest", she said, "We know she's (Jeanson) an awesome climber
and Oak Glen is a real hard stage. So the more energy I have, the
better, and the less she has, the better, so maybe it will equal out."
1. Lyne Bessette (Saturn, CAN), 1:38:13
2. Geneviève Jeanson (Rona Cycling Team, CAN), 1:38:17
3. Mari Holden (Cannondale-USA, USA), 1:38:24
4. Alison Dunlap (Luna Team, USA), 1:39:30
5. Trish Choo (Helens/Trek/VW, USA), 1:39:57
1. Geneviève Jeanson (Rona Cycling Team, CAN), 1:47:36
2. Lyne Bessette (Saturn, CAN), 1:48:21
3. Mari Holden (Cannondale-USA, USA), 1:48:54
4. Alison Dunlap (Luna Team, USA), 1:49:54
5. Judith Arndt, (Saturn, GER), 1:50:03
Team General Classification
1. Saturn, 2. Rona Cycling Team, 3. Cannondale-USA
1. Chris Horner (Prime Alliance, USA), 1:53:56
2. John Lieswyn (7up/Nutra Fig, USA), 1:53:58
3. Roland Green (Canadian Cycling, CAN), 1:53:58
4. Chad Gerlach (Sierra Nevada-Cannondale, USA), 1:54:00
5. Tom Boonen (US Postal Service, BEL), 1:54:00
1. Chris Horner (Prime Alliance, USA), 2:02:34
2. Roland Green (Canadian Cycling, CAN), 2:02:59
3. Trent Klasna (Saturn, USA), 2:03.02
4. Soren Petersen (Saturn, DEN), 2:03:03
5. Chris Baldwin (Navigators, USA), 2:03:03
Team General Classification
1. Saturn, 2. US Postal Service, 3. Navigators