Jonathan Cantwell (Fly V Australia) ended his stateside season with a victory at the Chris Thater Memorial, the final round of the National Racing Calendar (NRC) series, held on Sunday in Binghamton, New York. The savvy criterium rider won the race after he jumped ahead of his teammate Bernie Sulzberger who placed second and Hilton Clarke (UnitedHealthcare p/b Maxxis) in third.
"This is a really nice way to end the season here in the USA," Cantwell said. "To go one and two in our final race, I’m really content at the moment. We had a strong roster at the start of the race and the guys did a fantastic job. I was on Bernie’s wheel with a couple of corners to go and once he goes I just try to hold on and make sure I get around him at the finish line."
Fly V Australia solidified its victory as the nation’s number one ranked team in the country, according to the National Racing Calendar (NRC) series. Luis Amaran (Jamis-Sutter Home p/b Colavita), who was not present at the Chris Thater Memorial, won the individual title.
"It was important for me, Sulzberger and [Ben] Kersten to finish well to get the NRC points today." Cantwell said. "It’s a huge honor and very prestigious to be ranked the number one team in America. To win the NRC is a huge feat and we were so consistent from the start to the end. This is very important to the team and very important to the sponsors."
The battle for NRC points
Some 120 Pro and Cat 1 men lined up to contest the last NRC and penultimate USA Crits event of the season. NRC leader Luis Amaran (Jamis-Sutter Home p/b Colavita) was not present however, the leading team Fly V Australia showcased its strong sprinters and top point contenders with Jonathan Cantwell, Bernie Sulzberger and Ben Kersten.
The field also included Hilton Clarke, Karl Menzies and Jake Keough (UnitedHealthcare p/b Maxxis), Kyle Wamsley and US Pro Criterium Champion Daniel Holloway (Bissell) and USA Crits Series leader Clayton Barrows (AXA Equitable Cycling).
Much the same as the women’s race held on the previous day, the teams with the most riders were the most aggressive, UnitedHealthcare, Bissell and Fly V Australia. Other teams that contributed to the day’s activity included Jamis-Sutter Home, AXA Equitable Cycling Team/CRCA and Mountain Khakis.
Andy Jacques-Maynes (Bissell) was the first rider to gain a significant amount of time on the field. He countered a series of attacks mid-race and wound up solo with roughly 15 seconds of padding between himself and the peloton.
Riders from Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joes took it upon themselves to set a strong tempo at the front of the field. The team had four riders sitting close behind Barrows in the USA Crits Series standings with Issac Howe, Mark Hekman, Neil Bezdek and David Guttenplan.
Holloway, the national champion, no doubt wanted to capitalize from his breakaway sprint capability and wait to counter attack. Once his teammate was caught that is exactly what he did.
"It felt good to wear my jersey, you get a call up and people say congrats but it didn’t affect my racing," Holloway said. "I was going to race hard with or without the jersey. It was a hard course but I started to feel better as the race went on. I wanted to see if I could put myself out there. There were a ton of groups that looked solid enough to go away but for some reason they came back. I wanted to be aggressive today and my legs let me do that."
"I think the NRC tactics affected the race today," Holloway said. "If we put two guys in the break and United put two guys in then Fly V would put an all out chase and the same goes with the other way around. Even if we had the magic numbers of three, three and three it was a loss because it might have been the wrong guys for their team GC. We just had to be aggressive all day and every break we had solid numbers."
Next to go was Wamsley who was followed by Barrows and Howe and later Frank Pipp (Bissell), Andy Guptill (Jamis-Sutter Home p/b Colavita) and Alessandro Bazzana (Fly V Australia). Several more large breakaways gained small amounts of time before getting reeled back in by the peloton as it approached the final laps and teams UnitedHealthcare and Fly V Australia controlled the pace with their respective lead-out trains.
"We covered the moves all day long and UnitedHealthcare was really giving us a hard time, they were right there as well," Cantwell said. "Karl and Hilton were very aggressive. We always had someone in the break and guys covering the moves. In the last couple of laps we overtook the UnitedHealthcare lead-out with about half a lap to go and we went side-by-side for a little bit. The course made it really hard to control but the guys did a great job."
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Jonathan Cantwell (Fly V Australia)|
|2||Bernard Sulzberger (Fly V Australia)|
|3||Hilton Clarke (Unitedhealthcare p/b Maxxis)|
|4||Kyle Wamsley (Bissell)|
|5||Andres Ignacio Pereyra (Jamis/Sutter Home p/b Colavita)|
|6||Cody Stevenson (Adageo Energy)|
|7||Iggy Silva (Trek-Livestrong)|
|8||Isaac Howe (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|9||Jake Keough (Unitedhealthcare p/b Maxxis)|
|10||Daniel Holloway (Bissell)|
|11||Rafael Meren (Mengoni)|
|12||Clayton Barrows (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|13||Paul Martin (Panther/Competitive)|
|14||William Dugan (Team Type 1)|
|15||James Driscoll (Jamis/Sutter Home p/b Colavita)|
|16||Chris Gruber (MainLine/BiKyle/Mazur)|
|17||Matteo Dalcin (EuroSports.ca)|
|18||Jackie Simes (Jamis/Sutter Home p/b Colavita)|
|19||William Goodfellow (BikeReg/Cannondale)|
|20||Jerome Townsend (Unattached)|
|21||Adam Carr (Adageo Energy)|
|22||Guido Palma (Jamis/Sutter Home p/b Colavita)|
|23||Chuck Hutcheson (BatleyHarleyDavidson)|
|24||Karl Menzies (Unitedhealthcare p/b Maxxis)|
|25||Melito Heredig (Innovation)|
|26||Jim Baldesare (Kenda p/b Geargrinder)|
|27||Andy Guptill (Jamis/Sutter Home p/b Colavita)|
|28||Austin Roach (MetLife)|
|29||Thomas Brown (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|30||Gavriel Epstein (CRCA/Foundation)|
|31||Alain Ferry (Team Menu/Mix)|
|32||Ed Veal (LaBiccietta Elite)|
|33||Lisban Quintero (CRCA/Foundation)|
|34||Adam Farabaugh (MainLine/BiKyle/Mazur)|
|35||Ryan Roth (Spider Tech)|
|36||Michael Margarite (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|37||Zach Davies (Fly V Australia)|
|38||Jordan Cheyne (BiKyle/Mazur Coaching)|
|39||Tim Farnham (Adageo Energy)|
|40||David Hoyle (CCNS-CharlesCoaching)|
|41||David Guttenplan (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|42||Ben Kersten (Fly V Australia)|
|43||Luis Amaurys (Mengoni)|
|44||Luke Keough (BikeReg/Cannondale)|
|45||Peter Hurst (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|46||Gregory Christian (Panther/Competitive)|
|47||Igor Volshteyn (Champion System)|
|48||Eric Schildge (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|49||Neil Bezdek (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|50||Ryan Dewald (MainLine/BiKyle/Mazur)|
|51||John Loehner (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|52||Jeff Buckles (Richmond Pro Cycling)|
|53||Vince Roberge (Panther/Competitive)|
|54||Jake Hollenbach (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|55||Alex Bhogal (MainLine/BiKyle/Mazur)|
|56||Clay Murfet (Ride Clean)|
|57||Mark Warno (Syn-Fit)|
|58||David Williams (Bissell)|
|59||Bobby Lea (Lionoflanders.com)|
|60||Anthony Taylor (CRCA/Dave Jordan)|
|61||Ryan Fleming (MetLife)|
|62||Alessandro Bazzana (Fly V Australia)|
|63||Adam Myerson (Mountain Khakis f/b Jittery Joe's)|
|64||Rodney Santiago (Champion System)|
|65||Brad Whte (Unitedhealthcare p/b Maxxis)|
|66||Cody O'reilly (Bissell)|
|67||Shane Kline (Bissell)|
|68||Jonathan Clarke (Unitedhealthcare p/b Maxxis)|
|69||James Carney (Ride Clean)|
|70||Michael Chauner (PA Lightning)|
|71||Kirk Albers (Panther/Competitive)|
|72||Ryan Shebelsky (Alliance Environmental)|
|75||Joe Whitman (Axa Equitable CRCA)|
|76||Timothy O'shea (Unattached)|
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