Elite Men: Steamboat Springs - Steamboat Springs
Alex Howes (EF Education-Nippo) won the 144-mile off-road race at SBT GRVL held in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. In a three-way sprint between the leaders of the race, Howes out-paced Ian Boswell (Wahoo Frontiers) and Peter Stetina (Canyon).
The popular gravel event was held just one day following the Leadville Trail 100 MTB where Howes competed alongside his teammate Lachlan Morton, who finished second behind winner Keegan Swenson. Howes finished the race in 14th place but on Sunday he was back to his best.
“It was really a race of attrition. There were a couple big climbs that broke it up but it was pretty much full gas the whole day,” Howes said after his win.
“I was really, really cramping for the last 60 kilometers. “I had a terrible day yesterday. But we somehow scrambled and got it together."
Roughly 30 to 40 riders were still in contention in the race at mile 90 but on a testing climb the lead group dramatically thinned out with just Stetina, Boswell, and Howes at the front of the race with around 12 miles remaining. Earlier in the race, Colin Strickland had been one of the most aggressive riders in the event and had been breaking up the race with a number of accelerations. However, the former Unbound Gravel winner slipped back in the second half of the race.
Stetina pushed the pace on the downhill section, Cow Creek, that came next, before Howes made a move that eventually brought the leading trio back together.
At one point Boswell, who won Unbound Gravel earlier this summer, was almost a minute down on the leaders but he battled back before the final selection was made in the race.
"It was a really positive experience and it was a really cool race. I didn’t feel great until we hit 100 miles in and more and more I’m realizing that these events are about attrition. At one point I was out the back having gone through a single-track section and I was maybe 45 seconds to a minute down but in these races, you just have to keep going because you never know when you’re going to come back," Boswell told Cyclingnews after his second place.
The SBT GRVL route was 144 miles and included roughly 9,400 feet of climbing more than 100 miles of gravel sectors, making it one of the more challenging gravel races on the calendar.
|Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|10||Lauren ten Dam|
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