Astellas' Dhaene wins Winston Salem Criterium

Keough, Holloway miss out on catching escapee

Belgian Brecht Dhaene gave his new UCI Continental Astellas Cycling Team its first win on US soil in the Winston Salem Classic Criterium. The 25-year-old held off the charging field after spending most of the race as part of a three-rider breakaway, the rest of which was caught with 100m to go.

Luke Keough (UnitedHealthcare) was second from the field, while Daniel Holloway (Athlete Octane) rounded out the podium.

Dhaene was off the front with Remi Pelletier-Roy (Garneau-Quebecor) and David Cueli (UnitedHealthcare of Georgia) for more than an hour of the 90 minute race, and while they had a 15 second lead with three laps remaining, the field finally closed it down only on the last lap, but timed it just a hair too late.

"I knew I was not able to beat them in the sprint, so I tried the attack and it worked out fine," Dhaene said. "I wanted to have a win in the next few races because I knew my shape was right."

The trio, clearly exhausted, could see the single-file peloton led by the orange helmets of Optum and the white and blue of UnitedHealthcare charging just behind, but Dhaene was able to hold on by a bike length as his previous companions were caught.

"I was on the brink of an explosion," Dhaene said of the last few meters. "I had tunnel vision. I only saw the line and it was all I was counting on at that moment."

It was David and Goliath: a three-man break of riders from relatively small teams up against the UnitedHealthcare juggernaut, the team which has dominated all of the USA Cycling National Criterium Calendar for years. Off the front for the better part of an hour, the trio of Pelletier-Roy (Garneau-Quebecor), Dhaene (Astellas) and Cueli (UnitedHealthcare of Georgia) had 15 seconds on the UHC-led field with 15 laps to go, and it seemed impossible that they would stay away, but there seemed to be no agreement back in the field as to who should do the work to chase the trio down.

With two laps to go, UHC and Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies were 12 seconds behind when the orange-helmeted team finally came surging to the fore on the hunt.

The trio made a critical error, beginning to look at each other instead of keeping their heads down as they entered the last lap and saw the field behind. That brief moment of indecision was enough to halve the gap, and the three riders were dangling with two turns to go, but only Cueli and Pelletier-Roy were caught.

Dhaene kept on powering away and held off the chasing field, the Belgian an entirely unexpected name at the top of the podium. Pelletier-Roy held on for fourth ahead of Incycle's Ricardo Escuela.

Shane Kline (SmartStop) took over the lead in the USA Crits series thanks to his sixth place on the day.

Full results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Brecht Dhaene (Bel) Astellas Cycling1:29:48 
2Luke Keough (USA) UnitedHealthcare0:00:00 
3Daniel Holloway (USA) Athlete Octane Cycling0:00:01 
4Remi Pelletier-Roy (Can) Garneau-Québecor0:00:01 
5Ricardo Escuela (Arg) Incycle - Predator Cycling Team0:00:01 
6Shane Kline (USA) SmartStop0:00:02 
7Alexander Ray (NZl) Hincapie Sportswear Development0:00:02 
8Isaac Howe (USA) Champion System - Stan's NoTube0:00:03 
9Carlos Alzate (Col) UnitedHealthcare0:00:03 
10Brad Huff (USA) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strateg0:00:03 
11Travis McCabe (USA) SmartStop0:00:03 
12Thomas Brown (USA) Astellas Cycling0:00:04 
13Ben Renkema (USA) Stan's NoTubes p/b Proferrin0:00:04 
14Adam Myerson 52534 SmartStop0:00:04 
15Rafael A. Meran (Dom) CRCA/Foundation0:00:04 
16Adam Farabaugh (USA) Garneau-Québecor0:00:04 
17Oscar Clark (USA) Hincapie Sportswear Development0:00:05 
18David Cueli (USA) UnitedHealthcare of GA p/b The  
19Alder Martz (USA) Hincapie Sportswear Development0:00:06 
20Timothy Rugg (USA) Battley Ducati-Spokes Etc p/b D0:00:06 
21Michael Woods (Can) Amore & Vita – Selle SMP0:00:06 
22Logan Loader (USA) Amore & Vita – Selle SMP0:00:06 
23Pierrick Naud (Can) Garneau-Québecor0:00:06 
24David Guttenplan (USA) SeaSucker / Guttenplan Coaching0:00:07 
25Viesturs Luksevics (Lat) Amore & Vita – Selle SMP0:00:08 
26Mat Stephens (USA) Battley Ducati/District Taco/Sp0:00:08 
27Mike Friedman (USA) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strateg0:00:09 
28Chris Uberti (USA) Astellas Cycling0:00:09 
29Frank Travieso (USA) UnitedHealthcare of GA p/b The0:00:12 
30Devin Clark (USA) Athlete Octane Cycling0:00:12 
31Ryan Anderson (Can) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strateg0:00:13 
32Geron Williams (Guy) CRCA/Foundation0:00:13 
33Nathaniel Ward 217857 East Composite Team  
34Ryan Roth (Can) Jet Fuel Coffee - Norco Bicycle0:00:14 
35Chad Hartley (USA) Athlete Octane Cycling0:00:15 
36Andrew Scarano (USA) UnitedHealthcare of GA p/b The0:00:16 
37Andrew Dahlheim (USA) Athlete Octane Cycling0:00:16 
38Mac Brennan (USA) BISSELL-ABG-GIANT0:00:16 
39Uri Martins (Mex) Amore & Vita – Selle SMP0:00:16 
40Josh Johnson (USA) BISSELL-ABG-GIANT0:00:17 
41Anton Varabel (Can) Jet Fuel Coffee - Norco Bicycle0:00:17 
42Rudolph Napolitano Incycle - Predator Cycling Team  
43Zach Bell (Can) SmartStop0:00:17 
44Dennis Ramirez Mejia (USA) Gateway Harley Davidson / Trek0:00:17 
45Jean-Michel Lachance (Can) Silber Pro Cycling Team0:00:18 
46David Goodman (USA) UnitedHealthcare of GA p/b The0:00:19 
47Stephan Hirsch (Ger) BISSELL-ABG-GIANT0:00:19 
48Gavriel Epstein (Can) Champion System - Stan's NoTube0:00:19 
49Tyler Coplea (USA) Gateway Harley Davidson / Trek0:00:19 
50Travis Samuel (Can) Jet Fuel Coffee - Norco Bicycle0:00:19 
51Curtis White (USA) CCB Racing0:00:20 
52Robert Sweeting (USA) 5hr Energy p/b Kenda0:00:20 
53Toms Skujins (Lat) Hincapie Sportswear Development0:00:20 
54Tim Mitchell (USA) CCB Racing0:00:20 
55Kevin Massicoti (Can) Jet Fuel Coffee - Norco Bicycle0:00:21 
56Matt Moosa (USA) Stan's NoTubes p/b Proferrin0:00:21 
57Derrick St-John (Can) Silber Pro Cycling Team0:00:22 
58Orlando Garibay (Mex) Incycle - Predator Cycling Team0:00:26 
59David Williams (USA) 5hr Energy p/b Kenda0:00:26 
60Taylor Shelden (USA) 5hr Energy p/b Kenda0:00:26 
61Daniel Chabanov (USA) CRCA/Foundation0:00:26 
62Christopher Drew (USA) SeaSucker/Guttenplan0:00:27 
63Sean Barrie (USA) Battley Ducati-Spokes Etc p/b D  
64Travis Livermon (USA) SmartStop0:00:27 
65Stephan Hall (Aus) Incycle - Predator Cycling Team0:00:27 
66Dion Smith (NZl) Hincapie Sportswear Development0:00:30 
67Alex Candelario (USA) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strateg  
68Benjamin Chaddock (Can) Garneau-Québecor0:00:30 
69Kevin Mullervy (USA) Champion System - Stan's NoTube0:00:31 
70Tyler Brandt (USA) BMW Development Team  
71Andres Alzate Escobar (Col) Champion System - Stan's NoTube0:00:31 
72Karl Menzies (Aus) UnitedHealthcare0:00:33 
73Bradley White (USA) UnitedHealthcare  
74Matt Bruner (USA) The Happy Tooth0:00:44 
75Scott Zwizanski (USA) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strateg0:00:49 
76Christian Parrett (USA) 5hr Energy p/b Kenda0:01:01 
77Bruno Langlois (Can) 5hr Energy p/b Kenda0:01:08 

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