Jason Sager out kicks Bishop, Amanda Carey wins again

No change in general classification after stage 3

Another hot, humid day greeted riders at the Trans-Sylvania Epic during stage 3. Both the men's and women's classes got off to an exciting start but the biggest change happened in the singlespeed category where Team Dicky's Rich Dillen had a heroic day, upsetting leader Rich Straub (Freeze Thaw/NoTubes/BikeFlights) by five minutes to take both the day's contest and the overall leaders jersey by a mere 35 seconds.

According to Dillen, he blew through the first aid station and ended up riding 35 miles to the final feed in near 100-degree Fahrenheit heat with only two water bottles. Then with just under one mile to go he flatted his rear tire and rode in on the puncture.

The 76km stage was a mix of pavement, gravel and short but difficult singletrack sections. As the open men rolled out, the overnight buzz was that Team CF's Chris Beck would attack early and when he did the main bunch let him dangle for a while before bringing him back. Once the capture happened Team Jamis leader Jason Sager countered with an attack of his own. After this first surge, GC leader Jeremiah Bishop and his Cannondale teammate Alex Grant, Kona's Kris Sneddon, Justin Lindine (BikeReg.com/Joe's Garage/Scott), Drew Edsall (Super Cool Bike Shop/Fastpaceracing) and Beck regrouped and formed the selection. The only contender missing was Kona's Barry Wick's who was left dealing with two flat tires and a badly out of true rear wheel during the early part of the day.

On the major climb Grant tested his legs and Sager followed, slowing settling into a groove that put a gap on both Grant and the rest of the field. According to Sager, his plan was to slowly snap off riders with small accelerations and it worked to perfection.

"I wanted to do little chips, little chips to isolate guys," said Sager." I tried to do it earlier in the day too, chip away and splinter riders."

As Sager neared the crest of the climb he saw Bishop chasing on his own so he slowed and waited for him to catch on.

"That was a bold move by Jason to slow up for Bishop," said Sager's teammate Adam Snyder. "Anything could have happened, he could have countered with an attack of his own."

But the pair worked through the last section of singletrack and the short gravel road to the finish, which saw Sager take the win and Bishop hold onto the overall lead going into stage 4. Grant came in third five minutes back.

"Bishop and I worked well all the way in with a good even pace," said Sager of the final miles.

The women's field started in no less dramatic fashion as Specialized's Rebecca Rusch, Sue Haywood (Shenandoah Bikes/Kenda/Turner/I-9) and Sonya Looney (Topeak/Ergon) all went off course near the start and lost approximately 10 minutes and second place GC rider Karen Potter (MTBRacenews) abandoned the race early in the stage.

As the top three women went through the first feed GC leader Amanda Carey slowly began to pull away over last year's overall winner Selene Yeager (Team CF,) eventually gaining about seven minutes by the finish. Going into the last singletrack section Yeager took a wrong turn, ending up in driveway before getting back on track and riding up on a crashed Vicki Barclay who snuck by while Yeager was off-course. Barclay, who injured her ribs in a crash during the prologue and continues to crash each day on the same side remounted and held on to take third. In the final home stretch Haywood, citing general race fatigue, crashed hard, finished and got a quick check by the medic before riding away from the start/finish area.

After three stages, Bishop holds a near eight-minute lead over Snedden and nearly twelve minutes on third place Lindine. For the women, Carey sits eight minutes ahead of Yeager and 14:12 over Barclay.


Men's open
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jason Sager (Team Jamis)2:54:26 
2Jeremiah Bishop (Cannondale)0:00:02 
3Alex Grant (Cannondale)0:04:48 
4Justin Lindine (BikeReg.com / Joe's Garage / Scott)0:04:50 
5Kris Sneddon (kona)0:05:50 
6Drew Edsall (Super Cool Bike Shop / Firstplaceracing)0:10:42 
7Kip Biese (Big Wheel Racing/Old Town Bike Shop)0:16:42 
8Adam Snyder (Team Jamis)0:16:46 
9Bryan Fawley (Orbea USA)0:17:22 
10Mark Weir (WTB/Cannondale/Shimano/Fox Racing Shox)0:22:23 
11Jonathan Davis (Trek Bike Store Boulder)0:25:57 
12Christopher Beck (TeamCF)0:30:14 
13Ryan Leech0:34:42 
14Barry Wicks (Kona)0:38:01 
15Nate Byrom (WTB/Cannondale/Shimano/Fox Racing Shox)0:40:37 
16Sloane Anderson (ProAir HFA)0:41:40 
17Nathan Ruch (Evolution Racing)0:49:47 
18Ben Cruz (WTB/Cannondale/Shimano/Fox Racing Shox)0:54:57 
19Ross Schnell (Trek/SRAM/Easton/Giro/Pearl)1:14:12 
20Michael Wissel (B2C2/ Boloco)1:43:26 
21James Spurk1:48:04 
DNSMike Festa (Trans-Sylvania Epic / NoTubes)  
DNFJosh Patterson (Dirt Rag)  
DNSMichael Cushionberry (Trans-Sylvania Epic / NoTubes)  
Women's open
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Amanda Carey (Kenda/Felt)3:30:20 
2Selene Yeager (Team CF)0:07:13 
3Vicki Barclay (Notubes/FTC/Performance Labs)0:08:28 
4Sue Haywood (Shenandoah Bikes,Kenda,Turner,I-9)0:17:58 
5Rebecca Rusch (Specialized)0:19:39 
6Sonya Looney (Topeak Ergon)0:29:54 
7Tanya Hanham (Tall Tree Cycles/Steelwool Bicycles)0:47:43 
8Kaarin Tae (Bicycles Plus / Bedford)1:30:03 
9Karen Brooks (Dirt Rag)1:32:04 
10Laura Gleason (Giordana-Clif Bar - BRICA)1:39:53 
11Jill Weist (Don Wiest Stables)2:11:38 
12Donna Weiser2:11:49 
13Kerry Combs2:27:41 
DNFKaren Potter (MTBRaceNews)  
DNFKarmen Woelber (Zoom Performance)  
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rich Dillen (TeamDicky)3:32:08 
2Rich Straub (Freeze Thaw / Bikeflights / Notubes)0:05:08 
3Bob Radzwich (The Bicycle Shop)0:09:12 
4Kelly Klett0:09:38 
5Greg Martin (Club Ride Apparel)0:12:34 
6Doug Jenne0:14:33 
7Morgan Miller (West Virginia Night Club)0:27:25 
8Craig Dupree (Milk Pail Racing)0:32:29 
9Mark Elsasser (Independent Fabrication)0:38:00 
DNSPeter Buckland (FreezeThaw Cycles)  
DNSDave Cormier  
Master men 40+
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Garth Prosser (Ashford Surgical / Cannondale)3:16:15 
2John Merriam0:09:38 
3Rich Oneil (Trans-Sylvania Epic / NoTubes)0:30:24 
4John Kuhn (Cranford Bike Team/CTS)0:32:17 
5Bruce Stauffer (Trek Bicycle Store Charlotte, NC)0:33:53 
6Chris Merriam0:40:49 
7Bruce Pisarek (COBC/National Engineering)0:54:00 
8Robert Hayes1:20:00 
9Dave Pryor (Kapelmuur Independent)1:25:37 
10Mark Drogalis (Team CF)1:35:05 
11Dave Stauffer1:41:12 
12Garnett Abbey (Oakville Cycling Club)1:53:58 
13Brendan Hickey2:13:49 
14James Taylor2:37:42 
DNSJason Gregg  
DNSLawrence Plug (Bicycles Plus / Bedford)  
DNSCarl Bush  
Master men 50+
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Scott Thomson4:00:24 
2James Wilson (Team CF)0:11:38 
3Edward Moran (Maverickfab Endurance)0:47:24 
4Fred Baker (Baker Compound 1250)1:51:12 
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Andrew Caputo / Mark Hixon (Team ERRACE)4:17:29 
2Cissy Fowler / David Cook (Pisgah Area Cycling)0:22:57 
Epic team
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Joey Boyle (The CO/VA Connection)4:00:22 
2Wels Baker (Twin Six/TSE Epic Team)0:09:36 
3Brandon Graham (Team Saratoga)0:40:27 
4Kevin Wetzel (The CO/VA Connection)0:12:36 
5Michael Boyes (The CO/VA Connection)1:07:20 
6Joseph Castle (Twin Six/TSE Epic Team)1:53:36 
DNSTanner Davis (The CO/VA Connection)  
DNSDerek Bissett (The CO/VA Connection)  
DNSPatrick Jeanmenne (Team Saratoga)  
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