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Peter Stetina and Moriah Wilson dominant at Rock Cobbler

Favourites Peter Stetina (Let’s Privateer) and Moriah Wilson (Specialized-The Meteor) dominated their respective gender categories to win overall titles at the Bianchi Rock Cobbler 9.0 on Saturday. 

After 80-plus miles of steep elevation gains and tricky descents across a variety of terrain, Stetina crossed the line as the overall winner in Bakersfield, California in a time of 4:49:13, a little over six minutes ahead of a trio of chasers.

Wilson defended her women’s title with a 30-minute advantage over the next best female rider Helena Plasschaert (Squadra SF Terun), and another seven minutes to Anna Yamuchi (2Alpha) in third. Wilson finished with a time of 5:28:56.

Stetina said the first half of the course was ‘very technical’, which tipped the scales to Christopher Blevins for an early lead. He chased back with John Borstelmann and Brennan Wertz to form a four-rider group mid-way through the race, then rode away on 'road bike gearing' in the final few dozen miles for the victory. 

“The Rock Cobbler is the kookiest bike race I’ve ever done. It’s unclassifiable. One minute you’re on nice surface and the next you’re slip sliding down a scree field, or just plain old riding through a field dodging cattle. There are 30 per cent run ups, WhiteClaw hand ups, ball pits, and it’s brutally difficult,” reported Stetina on his Instagram page after the race.

Borstelmann sprinted across the finish 6:12 after Stetina to take second place, with Wertz just edging out Blevins for the third spot. Jonathan Baker, who won last year’s event, finished fifth.

Individual pursuit world record holder and World Champion Ashton Lambie, who became the first man to break the four-minute barrier in the four-kilometre discipline in Mexico last year, finished 23rd overall in his inaugural Rock Cobbler ride. 

Tinker Juarez, one of the country’s best-ever BMX and MTB riders who owns three UCI Master’s World Championships, was back in the field. He finished second overall in 2020, but was not able to finish the course on Saturday.

Three competitors on the course also encountered an ill-tempered bull on the side of the trail, with video footage captured by other riders of the animal charging one rider and taking the rider to the ground. Cyclingnews reached out to race organisers about the incidents and were told, “everybody was A-OK,” with two riders finishing their routes and one rider did not finish.

Results - women
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Moriah Wilson (Specialized-The Meteor) 5:28:56
2Helena Plasschaert (Squadra SF Terun) 0:29:52
3Anna Yamauchi (2Alpha) 0:36:32
4Nikki Peterson (Source Endurance-Trek-Eliel) 0:43:55
5Amanda Nauman (SDG-Monster Hydro) 1:06:26
6Whitney Post (Team Bianchi) 1:10:30
7Jill Cederholm (KUHL Racing) 1:11:36
8Amy Cameron (Team Mike's Bikes pb Equator Coffee) 1:21:51
9Jaimee Erickson (Team Mike's Bikes pb Equator Coffee) 1:21:52
10Hannah Wood (Team Mike's Bikes pb Equator Coffee) 1:21:53

Results - men
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Peter Stetina (Let's Privateer) 4:49:13
2John Borstelmann (ABUS Pro Gravel) 0:06:12
3Brennan Wertz (Above Category) 0:06:13
4Christopher Blevins (Specialized Factory Racing)
5Jonathan Baker (Lauf Pro Cycling) 0:21:07
6Anthony Little 0:28:16
7Brandon Baker (SDG - Monster Hydro)
8Brian Scarbrough (Cometetive Metals-Trek) 0:29:18
9Chris Powell (Better Buzz) 0:32:39
10Cole Williams 0:32:55

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Jackie has been involved in professional sports for more than 30 years in news reporting, sports marketing and public relations. She founded Peloton Sports in 1998, a sports marketing and public relations agency, which managed projects for Tour de Georgia, Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and USA Cycling. She also founded Bike Alpharetta Inc, a Georgia non-profit to promote safe cycling. She is proud to have worked in professional baseball for six years - from selling advertising to pulling the tarp. She has climbed l'Alpe d'Huez three times (not fast). Her favorite road rides are around horse farms in north Georgia (USA) and around lavender fields in Provence (France), and some mtb rides in Park City, Utah (USA).

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