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Lakata and Bigham win Leadville 100

By:
Dejan Smaic / SportifImages

Topeak Ergon team celebrates double victory and two course records

The 20th edition of the Leadville 100 MTB Race became a milestone for both racers and event organizers. New course records were set for both the men's and women's fields, with Alban Lakata (Topeak-Ergon) smashing Levi Leipheimer's previous record of 6:16:37 by over 12 minutes, and Sally Bigham (Topeak-Ergon) shattering four-time winner Rebecca Rusch's (Specialized) previous record of 7:28:06 by over 11 minutes.

Approximately 2,000 registered racers lined up at 10,152 feet above sea level in a typical Colorado crispy, clear, cool 39-degree morning before heading out in the mass start for the 100-mile race. After the customary rifle blast signaling the race start, a sea of riders began to make its way out of town, with the elite riders leading the way.

The first climb of the day made the winning men's race selection of trio Austrian Lakata, American Todd Wells (Specialized), and Swiss Christoph Sauser (Specialized), who is the current marathon world champion.

The trio stayed together until the Powerline climb, splitting the group through the finish, with Lakata soloing across the finish line with a time of 6:04:01. Sauser finished second at 6:05:07, and Wells rounded out the top three in a time of 6:18:47. All three riders were visibly cooked from the record-breaking pace, with Sauser determined to come back in 2014 and try to win it.

In the women's race, there was another record-breaking effort with Sally Bigham (Topeak Ergon) putting distance on her field going into the Pipeline. Bigham maintained her winning gap over a chasing 2013 women's criterium national champion Allison Powers (Herbalife) and Rusch. Bigham crossed the finish line with a record-breaking time of 7:17:02, followed by Powers at 7:21:57, and Rusch at 7:35:27. After the finish, Rusch, who had lost a close cycling friend in an accident a few days prior to the race, was swept by emotion and closed out the 2013 Leadville 100 with tears.

Brief Results

Elite men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Alban Lakata 6:04:02  
2 Christophe Sauser 0:01:06  
3 Todd Wells 0:14:46  
4 Cameron Cogburn 0:32:19  
5 Ben Aufderheide 0:36:17  
6 Takei Kyosuke 0:45:21  
7 Greg Krause 0:45:25  
8 Bryan Dillon 0:46:19  
9 Nate Whitman 0:47:39  
10 Cesar Grajales 0:51:05  
Elite women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Sally Bigham 7:17:02  
2 Alison Powers 0:04:56  
3 Rebecca Rusch 0:18:25  
4 Christine Jeffrey 1:05:07  
5 Jari Kirkland 1:06:54  
6 Molly Throdahl 1:17:33  
7 Laura O'meara 1:19:24  
8 Jennifer Shinn 1:20:45  
9 Shawnie Mulligan 1:33:11  
10 Katie Lindquist 1:38:37