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At the Iron Hill Criterium, the seventh stop on the USA Crits series, the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team continued their criterium dominance with Luke Keough winning the field sprint after being part of a group that lapped the field.
Held in downtown West Chester, Pennsylvania, the field was racing for 75 kilometers on a one-kilometer rectangular course with the start/finish line on a slight uphill gradient.
The constant primes for cash and USA Crit series points kept the race animated with riders getting dropped off the back of the peloton.
With about 10 laps completed a three man break went up the road containing Frank Travieso (Team SmartStop – Mountain Khakis), Michael Woods (Garneau Quebecor), and Carlos Alzate (UnitedHealthcare).
Alzate was just sitting on forcing Travieso and Woods to do the work to keep the break alive. With 58 laps remaining the trio carved out a 23-second lead on the chasing peloton.
A hundred dollar prime motivated the chasing field to catch the break.
The next attack was a solo move by Andreas Graf (Rudy Project Racing Team). He scooped up several primes, but with 42 laps remaining the Austrian was caught.
A little past the halfway point of the race ten riders got away: Brad White (UnitedHealthcare), Issac Howe (SmartStop – Mountain Khakis), Micheal Chauner (Garneau Quebecor), Bruno Langlois (Garneau Quebecor), Karl Menzies (UnitedHealthcare), Luke Keough (SmartStop – Mountain Khakis), Bobby Lea (SmartStop – Mountain Khakis), Andreas Graf, Hannes Baumgarten (Rudy Project Racing Team), and Rafael Meran (CRCA/Foundation).
Quickly the gap started to grow and with 30 laps remaining the escapees were about to lap the field.
White, Howe and Meran made the junction to catch the field. Soon their six breakaway partners joined them and the field was lapped.
"There was a bit of confusion because it was a big group and everyone was looking at each other," said Keough. "We had three guys up there so it was up to us to drive it. I didn't have to do much. Brad (White) and Karl (Menzies) are machines and lapped the field for me."
White, one of the riders who had lapped the field, punctured with 23 laps remaining. There was no panic as his UnitedHealthcare mechanic easily swapped out his wheel in the neutral pit and pushed him back in the race.
With less than 20 laps remaining the blue kits of UnitedHealthcare took over the front of the field keeping the field strung out. Tucked in behind was the blue and yellow of SmartStop – Mountain Khakis.
With 17 laps to the finish a huge crash halved the field. The wheel pit was flooded with victims of the crash looking to take advantage of the free lap rule. Caught in the pile up was one of the original ten that lapped the field, Michael Chauner.
With the lap cards in the single digits the entire UnitedHealthcare squad continued to lead the race looking to lead out their sprinter Keough.
Coming off his team's sprint train, Keough easily out-kicked what remained of the peloton to take the win. Teammate Menzies finished in second and Langlois rounded out the podium in third.
As usual Keough gave thanks to his hard working UnitedHealthcare teammates.
"It wasn't easy and I couldn't have done it without them."
The 22-year old described the Iron Hill criterium as "the hardest race in the country."
The next race on the USA Crits series is the Andersen Banducci Twilight Criterium in Boise, Idaho.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Luke Keough (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)||1:40:19|
|2||Karl Menzies (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)||0:00:01|
|3||Bruno Langlois (GARNEAU QUEBECOR)||0:00:03|
|4||Rafael A. Meran (CRCA/Foundation)||0:00:04|
|5||Bobby Lea (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)||0:00:05|
|6||Isaac Howe (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)||0:00:26|
|7||Bradley White (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)||0:00:43|
|8||Michael Chauner (GARNEAU QUEBECOR)||0:00:47|
|9||Andreas Graf (Rudy Project Racing Team)||0:01:09|
|10||Carlos Alzate (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)||0:03:01|
|11||Hilton Clarke (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)||0:03:04|
|12||Michael Woods (GARNEAU QUEBECOR)||0:03:05|
|13||Allan Rego (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTubes)||0:03:06|
|14||Hannes Baumgarten (Rudy Project Racing Team)|
|15||Jake Sitler (SEAVS/Haymarket pb Soigneur)|
|16||Clay Murfet (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)||0:03:07|
|17||Euris R. Vidal (CRCA/Foundation)||0:03:12|
|18||Shane Kline (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)||0:03:21|
|19||Frank Travieso (Team SmartStop-Mountain Khakis)||0:03:29|
|20||Evan Murphy (CRCA/Foundation)||0:03:41|
|21||Gavriel Epstein (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTubes)|
|22||Geron Williams (CRCA/Foundation)|
|23||Jeremy Shirock (Peanut Butter Human Zoom)|
|24||Barry Miller (Firefighters Cycling Team)|
|25||Wyatt Stoup (Mt Borah / Minerva Design p/b B)||0:03:42|
|26||Anthony Clark (J.A.M. Fund / NCC)|
|27||Kerry Werner Jr. (USA BMC U23 Development Team)||0:03:43|
|28||Neil Bezdek (CRCA/Foundation)|
|29||Zachary Hughes (GARNEAU QUEBECOR)|
|30||Brandon Spencer (Mt Borah / Minerva Design p/b B)||0:03:44|
|31||Edwin Bull (Van Dessel Factory Team)|
|32||Adrian Hegyvary (UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Te)|
|33||Guillaume Nelessen (Van Dessel Factory Team)||0:03:47|
|34||Eric Workowski (Team Alliance Environmental)||0:03:48|
|35||Keith Kelly (MetLife - NorEast Cycling)||0:04:07|
|36||Adam Farabaugh (GARNEAU QUEBECOR)||0:04:09|
|37||Wes Kline (D3Devo p/b Airgas Cycling Team)||0:04:10|
|38||Ryan Mele (Stan's NoTubes p/b Proferrin)||0:04:11|
|39||Dylan Pudiak (Mt Borah / Minerva Design p/b B)||0:04:15|
|40||Brendan Housler (Mt Borah / Minerva Design p/b B)||0:04:18|
|41||Daniel Chabanov (CRCA/Foundation)||0:04:31|
|42||Lucas Wardein (D3Devo p/b Airgas Cycling Team)||0:12:26|
|43||Luke Ockerby (Team BudgetForklifts)|
|44||John Hunter (Mt Borah / Minerva Design p/b B)|
|45||Peter Bell (MetLife - NorEast Cycling)|
|46||Ryan Shebelsky (Team Alliance Environmental)|
|47||Bill Elliston (Van Dessel Factory Team)|
|48||Brandon Zavala (Ciclistas del Este)|
|49||Chris Wolhuter (Stan's NoTubes p/b Proferrin)|
|50||Matt Spohn (The Performance Lab p/b The Caf)|
|51||Matt Inconiglios (Stage 1 / fusionTHINK)|
|52||Cesar Marte (Champion System p/b Stan's NoTu)||0:12:27|
|53||Patrick Jones (Calder Stewart)|
|54||Michael Astell (Mersey Valley Devonport)|
|55||Ted Horwitz (Heart House CADV)|
|56||David Dawson (The Performance Lab p/b The Caf)|
|57||Matthew Furlow (Breakawaybikes.com p.b. Vie 13)|
|58||Juan Carmona (BikeReg.com / Cannondale)|