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Clarke wins Delray Beach criterium

By:
Neil Browne

Crowell solos to victory in USA Crits round 2

Jacquelyn Crowell (Exergy Twenty 16) and Hilton Clarke (UnitedHealthcare) were the night's winners at the Delray Beach Criterium, the second stop of the USA Crits series and the third race in the National Criterium Calendar. Located in downtown Delray Beach, Florida, the course was a .7 kilometer loop with four-right hand corners with turn three dubbed “crash corner” due to its greater than 90 degree turn.

A solo break at about halfway in the race by Jacquelyn Crowell (Exergy TWENTY16) proved to be the winning move as she held off the peloton - but just barely.

The women were racing for 40 laps in downtown Delray Beach. The opening laps of elite woman's race was fast with numerous primes keeping the peloton motivated.

With 23 laps remaining the first serious move of the race was made. Jacquelyn Crowell (Exergy TWENTY16) took a one-hundred dollar prime and kept on rolling, separating herself from the field. Crowell had just returned from a European campaign and had the fitness to prove it.

Soon she had a 14 second gap on the pursuing peloton. Crowell continued to scoop up primes as her lead extended to 16 seconds and the peloton behind showed no sign of an organized chase.

With 18 laps to go Colavita/Fine Cooking team organized at the front for their sprinter Tina Pic. The result was the gradual pull-back of Crowell.

Van Guilder knew that Crowell's gap was too dangerous with only 13 laps to go and went to the front along with the Colavita/Fine Cooking team.

At three laps to go her lead increased to 12 seconds and her victory was almost assured. However with one lap to go she crossed the finish line and posted her arms up in the air thinking she had won. Her effort off the front earned her $1,400 in primes, but Crowell's early celebration might have robbed her of the victory.

Fortunately the Exergy TWENTY16 rider came to her senses and continued racing. Crowell reported that the crowds were so loud she couldn't hear anything and didn't realize she had one more lap remaining.

She had enough of a time gap to hold off the peloton to take the win. Close behind her was Erica Allar who took the sprint for second place and Joanie Caron (Primal Pro Women p/b BH) in third.

The current overall USA Crits leader's jersey changed to Erica Allar (CARE4Cycling) with her second place putting her in the lead.

Elite Men

Hilton Clarke capped off a strong performance by UnitedHealthcare in the men's race, with Shane Kline (SmartStop/Mountain Khakis) and Carlos Alzate (UnitedHealthcare) rounding out the podium.

With the course only illuminated by street and spot lights a field of 109 men were on the start line for 70 laps in downtown Delray Beach. With only a couple of laps completed a huge crashed forced the neutralization of the race.

One of those was injured in the crash and taken to the hospital was Davide Frattini (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling). He suffered a shoulder laceration which required 37 staples to close.

Alzate went in a three-man breakaway with Thomas Gibbons (EBP) and Euris Vidal (CRCA/Foundation) prior to the race neutralizing crash and were allowed their 11-second head start on the field once the race was restarted.

Numerous primes kept the speed high and ate into the breakaways lead reducing it to 15 seconds. Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis missed the move so the criterium-focused squad put their riders to the front to keep the gap from growing.

The power in the break was impressive as the trio's gap bounced back to 26 seconds with 47 laps remaining. However it was still plenty of time to bring the escapees back to the fold.

Numerous attacks and counter attacks went up the road but none gained more than a handful of seconds and lasted more than a lap.

Just before the midway point of the race Kevin Mullervy (Champion System p/b Stans NoTubes), Karl Menzies (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling), and Michael Chauner (Garneau-Quebecor) got a bit of a lead. It was enough for them to grab a USA Crits point prime as well as a one-hundred dollar prime.

With 28 laps to go the group was together, but not before Chauner picked up one last one-hundred dollar prime.

With 21 laps to the finish Barry Miller (Firefighters Cycling Team) made a solo move and grabbed one of the many one-hundred dollar primes on offer throughout the night. However a lone rider was no match for the peloton and he was absorbed after a couple of laps of freedom.

Bruno Langlois (Garneau-Quebecor) was the next rider to try his luck. With 16 laps to go, this Canadian rider is known as a time trialer so this solo move had some possibilities. UnitedHealthcare must have known this and the blue and black kits moved to the front to eat into his lead.

Langlois' solo move didn't last long. With 13 laps remaining UnitedHealthcare had all their riders lined up for what was looking to be a field sprint.

A crowd prime of six-hundred dollars motivated Jose Frank Rodriguez (EPB) to accelerate off the front. While he took the cash the UnitedHealthcare team brought him back and they were organizing their lead out train with three laps to go.

On the bell lap it was UnitedHealthcare's race to lose. The team was lined up to perfection and Menzies even picked up the final cash prime of the night on the penultimate lap.

Coming out of the final corner it was nothing but the blue kit of Clarke easily taking the field sprint victory with Shane Kline (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khaksi) in second, and Alzate rounding out the podium for third.

“We had a good winning stretch but none of these races are easy,” said Clarke. “With about 30 laps to go we had a chat and just said we’re going to ride for a sprint. With about 15 laps to go, we were controlling things and the team is really experienced in doing that. They worked all the way and led me out to about 100 meters to go and they were just amazing.”

With his victory in Delray Beach Clarke not only took over the current overall lead in the USA Crits series but the NCC as well. Kline's second place puts him as the current leader in the Under-25 competition.

Results

Men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Hilton Clarke (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling) 1:44:48  
2 Shane Kline (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khaksi) 0:00:01  
3 Carlos Alzate (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling)    
4 Rafael A. Meran (CRCA/Foundation) 0:00:02  
5 Derek Wilkerson (Bomb Hair p/b Motofish)    
6 Alexey Shmidt (United Healthcare of Georgia p/) 0:00:03  
7 Daniel Holt (United Healthcare of Georgia p/)    
8 Yosvany Falcon (Sharecare) 0:00:06  
9 David Guttenplan (AG BICYCLES / GUTTENPLAN COACHI1:)    
10 Bruno Langlois (Garneau-Quebecor)    
11 Allan Rego (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTu) 0:00:07  
12 Euris R. Vidal (CRCA/Foundation)    
13 Alder Martz (Hincapie Sportswear Development)    
14 Thomas Gibbons (EBP)    
15 Stephen Clancy (Team Novo Nordisk) 0:00:08  
16 Adam Farabaugh (Garneau-Quebecor) 0:00:09  
17 Emile Abraham (Team Predator Carbon Repair) 0:00:10  
18 Sergio Hernandez (Team Predator Carbon Repair)    
19 Isaac Howe (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)    
20 Adam Koble (GIANT-South)    
21 Jesse Keough (CRCA/Foundation) 0:00:11  
22 Thomas Brown (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)    
23 Shane Braley (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTu)    
24 Eric Stubbs (Gearlink Racing) 0:00:12  
25 Kevin Mullervy (Champion System p/b Stans NoTub) 0:00:13  
26 Alejandro Bello (Bike Street)    
27 Neil Bezdek 0:00:14  
28 Jordan Heimer (CRCA/Foundation)    
29 Frank Travieso (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis) 0:00:15  
30 Karl Menzies (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling) 0:00:16  
31 Jd Bergmann (Team Clif Bar Cycling)    
32 Michael Chauner (Garneau-Quebecor) 0:00:17  
33 Michael Woods (Garneau - Quebecor)    
34 Adrian Hegyvary (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling)    
35 Jean-Michel Lachance (Team Predator Carbon Repair) 0:00:18  
36 Ben Zawacki (Hincapie Sportswear Development)    
37 Matt Green (Astellas Oncology) 0:00:19  
38 Branden Russell (Team Novo Nordisk)    
39 David Cueli (EBP)    
40 Alejandro Guzman (CRCA/Foundation)    
41 Ryan Dewald 0:00:20  
42 Gavriel Epstein (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTu)    
43 Brian Arne (Finish Strong Elite Cycling Tea)    
44 Josh Thornton (Pioneer Mortgage Funding presen) 0:00:21  
45 Derek Schanze (Gearlink Racing)    
46 Gevan Samuel (Team Predator Carbon Repair) 0:00:23  
47 Lucas Wardein (D3 Devo p/b Airgas)    
48 Jonathan Bowerman (Pioneer Mortgage Funding presen) 0:00:28  
49 Pete Morris (Team Clif Bar Cycling) 0:00:29  
50 Barry Miller (Firefighters Cycling Team) 0:00:41  
51 Joseph Lewis (Hincapie Sportswear Development)    
52 Jackie Simes (Team Smartstop-Mountain Khakis)    
53 Michael Dalterio (Team Novo Nordisk Development) 0:00:42  
54 Michael Midlarsky (UCI CT: Ekoi/Devinci Pro Cycli) 0:00:43  
55 Conor Mullervy (Champion Sysytem p/b Stans NoTu) 0:00:44  
56 David Benkoski (Team Clif Bar Cycling) 0:00:47  
57 Ben Chaddock (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis) 0:00:48  
58 Jose Frank rodriguez (EBP) 0:00:50  
Women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Jacquelyn Crowell (Exergy TWENTY16) 1:01:57  
2 Erica Allar (CARE4Cycling powered by Solomon) 0:00:05  
3 Joanie Caron (Primal Pro Women p/b BH)    
4 Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom)    
5 Scotti Wilborne (Leborne Development) 0:00:06  
6 Tina Pic (Colavita/Fine Cooking)    
7 Vanessa Drigo (Rose Bandit Racing Team)    
8 Jennifer Purcell (Colavita/Fine Cooking) 0:00:07  
9 Lauren Stephens (FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore)    
10 Laura Parsons (Rose Bandit Racing Team)    
11 Lenore Pipes (CARE4Cycling powered by Solomon)    
12 Jennifer Caicedo (Pepper Palace Pro Cycling) 0:00:08  
13 Morgan Patton (Team Novo Nordisk)    
14 Amy McGuire (FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore)    
15 Mary Zider (Colavita/Fine Cooking)    
16 Sara Tussey (VeloShine Cycling Team) 0:00:09  
17 Anna Sanders (FCS|Zngine p/b Mr. Restore)    
18 Ambre Levy (Pink Panthers Cycling Team)    
19 Tiffany Pezzulo (Primal Pro Women p/b BH) 0:00:10  
20 Hannah Miller (PainPathways Cycling Team) 0:00:11  
21 Nadia Latzgo (Exergy TWENTY16) 0:00:14  
22 Nichole Wangsgard (Primal Pro Women p/b BH)    
23 Marianne Holt (PainPathways Cycling Team) 0:00:15  
24 Shannon Parrish (Team Kenda presented by RACC)    
25 Lindsay Bayer (Colavita/Fine Cooking) 0:00:16  
26 Melina Bernecker (Primal Pro Women P/B BH)    
27 Jodi Diemar (CARE4Cycling powered by Solomon)    
28 Jacqueline Kurth (Colavita/Fine Cooking) 0:00:17  
29 Kristen LaSasso (Rose Bandit Racing Team) 0:00:43