Fontana wins Bonelli Park short track

Italian holds off Ettinger and Gagne

Italian Marco Aurelio Fontana (Cannondale Factory Racing) proved that short track racing is not just for North Americans when he won the elite men's race, which drew 69 men to the start line. The men set out to race 20 minutes plus two laps. Fontana beat Stephen Ettinger (BMC Racing) and Raphael Gagne (Rocky Mountain Factory Racing) at Bonelli Park in California on Sunday afternoon.

Another European Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Trek Factory Racing) of Spain took the hole shot ahead of US Cross Country National Champion Stephen Ettinger (BMC Racing). The two led a large group as it snaked its way through lap one.

Gutierrez continued to set the pace for the first two laps, followed by Fontana and Ettinger. The Spaniard rode so strongly that he created a gap on his rivals early on lap 2.

Canadian Max Plaxton (Cannondale Factory Racing) first led the chase, along with Ettinger, Fontana and Todd Wells (Specialized). Their efforts paid off as the leaders were reunited for the third lap, largely thanks to US Short Track National Champion Wells putting the hammer down to close down the last part of the gap. Plaxton unfortunately lost control on on the far side of the course and crashed out of the race.

Eight men were then together at the front with a slight gap on a chase group led by Saturday's cross country winner Geoff Kabush (Scott-3Rox). The Canadian, as he did the previous day, tended to ride his own pace, evening out the surges and ebbs of the other top riders until he eventually caught up with the leaders on lap four.

Wells won the Sho-Air hot lap prime of $200 on lap five, crossing the line just ahead of Fontana.

A brief respite after the hot lap meant 12 men raced together in the lead group, but at minute 17, Wells launched an attack to break up the group and improve his own chances at a win. Fontana was the first to react to Wells.

With one lap to go, Gutierrez came back to the front, leading Fontana, Raphael Gagne (Scott-3Rox) and Manuel Fumic (Cannondale Factory Racing). Only eight men remained in contention for the win, while Europeans Fontana and Fumic proved their condition in an unfamiliar format by never being outside of the top five places for almost the entire race.

Fontana took over the lead on the back straight of the final lap with Ettinger and Gagne in tow. The Italian successfully negotiated the tight final corner and held off Ettinger and Gagne in the dash to the finish line.

Wells rolled in for fourth place ahead of Gutierrez in fifth. Cross country winner Kabush rode in for sixth.

"I love this format," said Fontana after the short track. "We decided to stay at the front today to avoid any crashes and it paid off. I'm glad to come away from this weekend with at least one victory and can't wait for the next race that they were so kind to name after me already!"

Full Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marco Fontana (Ita) Cannondale Factory  
2Stephen Ettinger (USA) BMC Mountain Bike  
3Raphael Gagne (Can) Rocky Mountain  
4Todd Wells (USA) Specialized Factory  
5Sergio Mantecon Gutie (Spa) Trek Factory Racing  
6Geoff Kabush (Can) Scott 3 Rox Racing  
7Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale Factory  
8Russell Finsterwald (USA) Sram/Troy Lee Design  
9Troy Wells (USA) Team Cliff Bar  
10Kerry Werner (USA) BMC Project Dirt  
11Spencer Paxson (USA) Kona  
12Mitchell Hoke (USA) The Pros Closet/Stan's  
13Carl Decker (USA) Giant Factory Team  
14Benjamin Sonntag (USA) Stans No Tubes Elite  
15Cole Oberman (USA) Rare Disease Cycling  
16Alex Grant (USA) Sho-Air/Cannondale  
17Cameron Jette (Can) Scott-3 Rox Racing  
18Jeremy Martin (Can)  
19Joseph Maloney (USA) Ks Energy Services  
20Barry Wicks (USA)  
21Peter Glassford (Can) Trek Canada  
22Kris Sneddon (Can) Kona  
23Tom Sampson (USA)  
24Alexandre Vialle (Can) Espresso Sport  
25Patrick Chartrand (Can) Rocky Mountain  
26Tristan Uhl (USA) 787 Racing  
27Tj Woodruff (USA) Backcountry.Com  
28Joel Titius (USA) Socal Endurance  
29Kalan Beisel (USA) Giant-Tuff Shed  
30Payson Mcelveen (USA) Usa U23  
31Ryan Woodall (USA) The Pros Closet/Stan's  
32Michael Broderick (USA) Kenda/Stans No Tubes  
33Evan Guthrie (Can) Norco Factory Team  
34Christopher Hamlin (USA)  
35Marc-Antoin Nadon (Can) Scott 3 Rox Racing  
36Bryan Alders (USA) Marin Bikes Factory  
37William Melone (USA) Riverside Racing  
38Michael Hosey (USA) Marin Factory  
39Colin Osborn (USA) Honey Stinger  
40Sepp Kuss (USA) BMC Project Dirt  
41Ryan Geiger (USA) Topix-Frm Factory  
42Alex Wild (USA) Trail Head Racing  
43Braden Kappius (USA) Team Clif Bar  
44Quinn Moberg (Can) Rocky Mountain  
45Casey Williams (USA) Whole Athlete/Specialized  
46Jarred Jordan (USA)  
47Madison Matthews (USA) Toasted Head Racing  
48Jakub Valigura (USA) 92Fifty' Cyclery  
49Noah Tautfest (USA) Bicycle Express/Kona  
50Dan Wolf (USA) Old Line Velo  
51David Flaten (USA) Giant Factory North  
52Aaron Oakes (USA) Bicycle Express  
53Matthew Turner (USA) Summit Utah Devo  
54Derek Hermon (USA) Bear Valley Bikes  
55Trey Jarno (USA) Bear Valley Bikes  
DNFAntoine Caron (Can) Specialized Racing  
DNFStephane Roch (USA) Swami's/Skliz  
DNFBrodie Stringer (USA) Team Baghouse  
DNFSam Schultz (USA) Sho-Air/Cannondale  
DNFErnest Watenpaugh (USA)  
DNFNick Thomas (USA) Az Devo  
DNFEmil Lindgren (Swe) Giant Pro Xc Team  
DNFKeegan Swenson (USA) Cannondale Factory  
DNFRotem Ishay (USA) Team Jamis Bikes  
DNFAdam Morka (Can) Wfp Coaching/Trek  
DNFRyan Trebon (USA) Sho-Air/Cannondale  
DNFMax Plaxton (Can) Cannodale Factory  
DNFChristopher Wieczorek (USA) Total Cyclist  
DNFLucas Newcomb (USA) Bear Development  

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