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A look at the US elite national road champion's bike
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Alzate leads USA Crits series
Robert Forster (Left) raises his arms as Jake keough (Right) wins Spartanburg Crit 2012
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.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Jake Keough (Unitedhealthcare Professional)||1:23:28|
|2||Carlos Alzate (Team Exergy)||0:00:00|
|3||Robert Forster (Unitedhealthcare Professional)||0:00:00|
|4||Emile Abraham (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)||0:00:00|
|5||John Murphy (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)||0:00:00|
|6||Shane Kline (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)||0:00:01|
|7||Yosmani Pol (Team Coco's)||0:00:01|
|8||Isaac Howe (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)||0:00:01|
|9||Ben Chaddock (Team Exergy)||0:00:02|
|10||Frank Travieso (Team Coco's)||0:00:02|
|11||Rafael A. Meran (CRCA/Foundation)||0:00:02|
|12||Luis Zayas (EBP Cycling Team)||0:00:02|
|13||Brendan Cornett (Locos Grill & Pub)||0:00:02|
|14||Colin Jaskiewicz (Champion System)||0:00:02|
|15||Kevin Mullervy (Team Exergy)||0:00:03|
|16||Kyle Knott (Athletix Cycling Team)||0:00:03|
|17||Joey Rosskopf (Type 1 - Sanofi)|
|18||Synjen Marrocco (CCB Racing)||0:00:04|
|19||Thomas Brown (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)||0:00:04|
|20||Leonardo Marquez (Rosseti)||0:00:04|
|21||David Guttenplan (United Healthcare Of Georgia)|
|22||Adam Myerson (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)||0:00:04|
|23||Miguel Bryon (Blue Star-Boom Development Team)|
|24||Cole House (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)||0:00:04|
|25||Sterling Magnell (Wonderful Pistachios Pro)||0:00:04|
|26||Ed Veal (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)||0:00:04|
|27||Bradley White (United Healthcare Professional)||0:00:05|
|28||Ben Renkema (Athletix Cycling Team)||0:00:06|
|29||Alexander Bremer (CRCA/Foundation)||0:00:06|
|30||Brandon Spencer (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)||0:00:06|
|31||Adam Leibovitz (Chipotle- First Solar)|
|32||Nick Fishbein (Veloshine Cycling Team)||0:00:07|
|33||Conor Mullervy (Team Exergy)|
|34||Gavriel Epstein (Champion System)||0:00:07|
|35||Diego Garavito (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)||0:00:07|
|36||David Williams (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)||0:00:08|
|37||Travis Livermon (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)||0:00:08|
|38||Jonathan Atkins (Beckjanitorial.Com)||0:00:09|
|39||Euris R. Vidal (CRCA/Foundation)|
|40||Tony Hall (Champion System)||0:00:09|
|41||Eric Stubbs (Gearlink Racing Inc.)||0:00:10|
|42||Gabe Lloyd (XO Communications P/B Cisco)||0:00:10|
|43||Ivan Dominguez (Franco Bicycles)||0:00:11|
|44||Daniel Chabanov (Foundation/CRCA)||0:00:11|
|45||Christian Parrett (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)||0:00:12|
|46||Tommy Nankervis (Competitive Cyclist Racing Team)||0:00:15|
|47||Paolo Cravanzola (Team Type 1 Devo)||0:00:16|
|48||Karel Sumbal (Gearlink Racing Inc.)||0:00:16|
|49||Andy Baker (Bissell Pro Cycling)|
|50||Kenneth Ng (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)||0:00:16|
|51||Thomas Gibbons (EBP Cycling Team)||0:00:17|
|52||Jean Michel Lechance (Rossetti Devo Cycling Team)||0:00:17|
|53||Maikel Matos (Team Coco's)||0:00:17|
|54||Paul Price (F.A.C.T.)||0:00:18|
|55||Alejandro Guzman (CRCA/Foundation)||0:00:18|
|56||Robert White, Jr. (Racc P/B Geargrinder)||0:00:18|
|57||Marc Williams (Athletix Cycling Team)||0:00:18|
|58||Jesse Keough (Champion System)||0:00:20|
|59||Oliver Flautt (Athens Velo Club)||0:00:20|
|60||Josh Oxendine (Diy Music)||0:00:20|
|61||Johnny Mitchell (Team Ville Llc)||0:00:21|
|62||Quinn Keogh (Team Exergy)||0:00:21|
|64||Justin Reddell (Dna Racing)||0:00:24|
|65||Barry Miller (Pure Energy Cycling)||0:00:24|
|66||Chris Ernst (Diy Music)||0:00:25|
|67||Andres Faustino Alzate (Team Exergy)||0:00:25|
|68||Richard Bailey (Team Metro)||0:00:26|
|69||Josh Thornton (Zmotion)||0:00:26|
|70||Claudio Arone (EBP Cycling Team)||0:00:26|
|71||David Wenger (Bicycle Sport Shop Pb Integrity)||0:00:26|
|72||Nick Keough (Champion System)||0:00:27|
|73||Daniel Asconeguy (Rosetti Development)||0:00:27|
|74||Jackie Simes (Jamis/Sutter Home)||0:00:29|
|75||Demis Aleman (Jamis/Sutter Home)||0:00:29|
|76||Andy Scarano (Unitedhealthcare Of Georgia)||0:00:37|
|77||Logan Cornel (Realdealracing/Labicicletta)||0:00:42|
|78||Adrian Hegyvary (Unitedhealthcare Professiona)||0:00:59|
|79||Pat Lemieux (Kenda/5-Hour Energy)||0:01:24|
|80||Timothy Rugg (Champion System)||0:12:13|
|DNF||Jerome Townsend (Team Mountain Khakis/Smartstop)|
|DNF||Jose Frank Rodriguez (Team Coco's)|
|DNF||Chris Calder (Les Amis Calder Brothers)|
|DNF||Andrew Crater (Cleveland Clinic Sports Health)|
|DNF||David Cueli (Team Coco's)|
|DNF||Dustin Greer (Maxxis/First Endurance)|
|DNF||Artiom Kraitor (Team Type 1 Devo)|