Keough wins Spartanburg round of NCC

Alzate leads USA Crits series

The Friday Spartanburg, South Carolina nightlife was ratcheted up a notch with the arrival of a National Criterium Calendar (NCC) event. The downtown played host to the Spartanburg Regional Classic with the professional men racing for 70 laps on the rectangular one-kilometer course.

Coming out of the shadows Jake Keough (UnitedHealthcare) launched off his leadout man Robert Forster and took the victory over Carlos Alzate (Team Exergy) finishing in second and leadout man Forster holding on for third.

Because this was an NCC event, the UnitedHeathcare squad was making an appearance as they were chasing the overall series win. In addition to the boys in blue, the usual suspects were lined up in Spartanburg: Kenda/5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder, Team Exergy, Competitive Cyclist and Wonderful Pistachios.

With just 12 laps in to the race, a massive crash on the backside of the course sent about 40 of the 125-rider field into the pit. Because the road was choked with riders walking to the pit the race was paused for safety reasons.

Once the race was restarted, the prime bell was clanking with regularity, but breaks weren't sticking.

On the 30th lap, another huge crash, this time on the home stretch, forced the officials to pause the race once again and restart the group as riders were in the pit swapping wheels and straightening bars.

The corners of the course were illuminated by floodlights and the home straightaway was lit with ambient light from the street lamps causing patches of shadows. Also, the road pinched inward, narrowing the finishing straightaway which was blamed for this second crash of the night.

As a result of the second restart, the veteran riders went to the front and drilled the speed to keep the field strung out.

By the midpoint, the top riders started to make their way to the front with UnitedHealthcare making an appearance.

That didn't stop Kenda/ 5 Hour Energy's John Murphy from striking out on his own to gobble up several cash primes. However, with every lap, Team Exergy slowly ate into Murphy's lead.

Finally with about 20 laps remaining, Murphy was caught. Riders continued to launch off the front to grab the cash primes, but it looked like Kenda/5 Hour, UnitedHealthcare and Team Mountain Khakis were setting up their trains for the field sprint.

With two laps to go, the blue kits of UnitedHealthcare took over control at the front looking to launch their sprinter Jake Keough.

On the bell lap Brad White (UnitedHealthcare) lead the field across the line with his teammates in tow.

Blasting around the corner it was no surprise to see the blue train of UnitedHealthcare first. Keough jumped from behind his teammate Forster with 100 meters to the line to take the victory.

"The racing in Europe is really hard but when you come here, it jogs your memory of how fast it really is and how good the competition is," said Keough.

"Usually this is an easy one, but it wasn't! Everyone was willing to race which made it hard and fast.

Keough explained the team's strategy.

"It was a little different than what we usually do of taking it from a long way out. Exergy and Mountain Khakis were riding really well, but we had five guys here and we went over the top with two laps to go."

What's remarkable is that this squad had just returned from Europe about 20 hours earlier so they were struggling with the effects of jet lag and fatigue of international travel.

In about 10 days, Keough returns to Europe for the Tour of Belgium.

Carlos Alzate (Team Exergy) leads the USA Crits series with two races remaining.

Full Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jake Keough (Unitedhealthcare Professional)1:23:28 
2Carlos Alzate (Team Exergy)0:00:00 
3Robert Forster (Unitedhealthcare Professional)0:00:00 
4Emile Abraham (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)0:00:00 
5John Murphy (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)0:00:00 
6Shane Kline (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)0:00:01 
7Yosmani Pol (Team Coco's)0:00:01 
8Isaac Howe (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)0:00:01 
9Ben Chaddock (Team Exergy)0:00:02 
10Frank Travieso (Team Coco's)0:00:02 
11Rafael A. Meran (CRCA/Foundation)0:00:02 
12Luis Zayas (EBP Cycling Team)0:00:02 
13Brendan Cornett (Locos Grill & Pub)0:00:02 
14Colin Jaskiewicz (Champion System)0:00:02 
15Kevin Mullervy (Team Exergy)0:00:03 
16Kyle Knott (Athletix Cycling Team)0:00:03 
17Joey Rosskopf (Type 1 - Sanofi)  
18Synjen Marrocco (CCB Racing)0:00:04 
19Thomas Brown (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)0:00:04 
20Leonardo Marquez (Rosseti)0:00:04 
21David Guttenplan (United Healthcare Of Georgia)  
22Adam Myerson (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)0:00:04 
23Miguel Bryon (Blue Star-Boom Development Team)  
24Cole House (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)0:00:04 
25Sterling Magnell (Wonderful Pistachios Pro)0:00:04 
26Ed Veal (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)0:00:04 
27Bradley White (United Healthcare Professional)0:00:05 
28Ben Renkema (Athletix Cycling Team)0:00:06 
29Alexander Bremer (CRCA/Foundation)0:00:06 
30Brandon Spencer (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)0:00:06 
31Adam Leibovitz (Chipotle- First Solar)  
32Nick Fishbein (Veloshine Cycling Team)0:00:07 
33Conor Mullervy (Team Exergy)  
34Gavriel Epstein (Champion System)0:00:07 
35Diego Garavito (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)0:00:07 
36David Williams (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)0:00:08 
37Travis Livermon (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)0:00:08 
38Jonathan Atkins (Beckjanitorial.Com)0:00:09 
39Euris R. Vidal (CRCA/Foundation)  
40Tony Hall (Champion System)0:00:09 
41Eric Stubbs (Gearlink Racing Inc.)0:00:10 
42Gabe Lloyd (XO Communications P/B Cisco)0:00:10 
43Ivan Dominguez (Franco Bicycles)0:00:11 
44Daniel Chabanov (Foundation/CRCA)0:00:11 
45Christian Parrett (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)0:00:12 
46Tommy Nankervis (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)0:00:15 
47Paolo Cravanzola (Team Type 1 Devo)0:00:16 
48Karel Sumbal (Gearlink Racing Inc.)0:00:16 
49Andy Baker (Bissell Pro Cycling)  
50Kenneth Ng (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)0:00:16 
51Thomas Gibbons (EBP Cycling Team)0:00:17 
52Jean Michel Lechance (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)0:00:17 
53Maikel Matos (Team Coco's)0:00:17 
54Paul Price (F.A.C.T.)0:00:18 
55Alejandro Guzman (CRCA/Foundation)0:00:18 
56Robert White, Jr. (Racc P/B Geargrinder)0:00:18 
57Marc Williams (Athletix Cycling Team)0:00:18 
58Jesse Keough (Champion System)0:00:20 
59Oliver Flautt (Athens Velo Club)0:00:20 
60Josh Oxendine (Diy Music)0:00:20 
61Johnny Mitchell (Team Ville Llc)0:00:21 
62Quinn Keogh (Team Exergy)0:00:21 
63Crashed Rider0:00:21 
64Justin Reddell (Dna Racing)0:00:24 
65Barry Miller (Pure Energy Cycling)0:00:24 
66Chris Ernst (Diy Music)0:00:25 
67Andres Faustino Alzate (Team Exergy)0:00:25 
68Richard Bailey (Team Metro)0:00:26 
69Josh Thornton (Zmotion)0:00:26 
70Claudio Arone (EBP Cycling Team)0:00:26 
71David Wenger (Bicycle Sport Shop Pb Integrity)0:00:26 
72Nick Keough (Champion System)0:00:27 
73Daniel Asconeguy (Rosetti Development)0:00:27 
74Jackie Simes (Jamis/Sutter Home)0:00:29 
75Demis Aleman (Jamis/Sutter Home)0:00:29 
76Andy Scarano (Unitedhealthcare Of Georgia)0:00:37 
77Logan Cornel (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)0:00:42 
78Adrian Hegyvary (Unitedhealthcare Professiona)0:00:59 
79Pat Lemieux (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)0:01:24 
80Timothy Rugg (Champion System)0:12:13 
DNFJerome Townsend (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)  
DNFJose Frank Rodriguez (Team Coco's)  
DNFChris Calder (Les Amis Calder Brothers)  
DNFAndrew Crater (Cleveland Clinic Sports Health)  
DNFDavid Cueli (Team Coco's)  
DNFDustin Greer (Maxxis/First Endurance)  
DNFArtiom Kraitor (Team Type 1 Devo)  
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