Carmen Small (Specialized-lululemon) took the bunch sprint victory at the Women’s Invitational Circuit Race on Sunday. She caught and passed Coryn Rivera (UnitedHealthcare), who initiated the sprint, at the line. Brianna Walle (Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) placed third.
"The first half of the race was animated," Small said. "I definitely felt the wind through the start-finish and it was a long sprint, so I had to keep that in mind coming into the last lap. UHC and Colavita did a good job of bringing things back. We were pretty aggressive and that was our game plan going into the race. I was supposed to save it for the second half and get ready for the sprint."
The elite women’s peloton lined up for the new women’s race that is held in conjunction with the men’s eight-day Tour of California. The women competed for 60 minutes on a roughly two-kilometer circuit in downtown Sacramento.
The race was aggressive from the start with Specialized-lululemon forcing many of the early-race attacks with former La Flèche Wallonne winner Evelyn Stevens and Redlands Bicycle Classic winner Tayler Wiles.
UnitedHealthcare came to the race with a young but proven sprinter, Rivera, and had no interest in joining any of the early moves. Rather the team kept the speed high at the front of the field in an attempt to hold the field together for a field sprint. The team’s Tour of San Luis winner Alison Powers stayed protected tucked in behind her teammates with Rivera on her wheel for much of the race.
The Canadian team’s Stephanie Roorda made a strong attempt to gain some time on the field, which was followed by counter attack from Robin Farina (Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI). Their efforts were short-lived and the field was back together with in seconds of each attack.
A small but strong breakaway formed mid-race that included Wiles, however, they were reabsorbed into the field with in half a lap. Roorda, a member of the decorated Canadian women’s team pursuit squad, took advantage of a lull in the field and made another move that gained about 10 seconds.
It took a combination of efforts between Specialized-lululemon and UnitedHealthcare to reduce the gap to Roorda, but she was eventually brought track into the field. Colavita-Fine Cooking and Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI made some counter attacks but everything was back together when the bell ran for eight laps to go.
Stevens made a strong move with seven laps to go and opened a sizable lead that was followed by her teammate Anna Grace Christiansen. Teams Colavita-Fine Cooking, UnitedHealthcare and the Canadian national team began to organize their lead outs with six laps to go, making it even more difficult for any attacks to stick.
Late-race moves came from Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies, a team that had been relatively quiet during the early part of the race. The Canadian national team, Tibco-To The Top and Vanderkitten Racing also sent riders on final attacks during the closing laps.
With one lap to go, Wiles and Small led the field through the start-finish line, and UnitedHealthcare set up their train directly behind followed by Tibco-To the Top and Colavita-Fine Cooking.
Powers started the lead out and sprint on the final stretch while her teammate Rivera waited to jump with 200m to go. She was caught and passed by Small, who took the victory at the line. "The lap was pretty long and there were a lot of people fighting for my teammate’s wheel," Rivera said. "I was trying to surf wheels and set myself in the right position without using too much energy. Coming out of the last corner, I was too far back and had to make up some ground."
The top three riders in the circuit race were given an automatic entry to tomorrow’s women’s time trial in Folsom.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Carmen Small (USA) Specialized-lululemon||0:58:54|
|2||Coryn Rivera (USA) UnitedHealthcare|
|3||Brianna Walle (Can) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies|
|4||Erica Allar (USA) Colavita/Fine Cooking|
|5||Jo Kiesanowski (NZl) Tibco / To The Top|
|6||Alison Powers (USA) UnitedHealthcare|
|7||Christina Gokey (USA) Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI|
|8||Amy Cutler (USA) FCS/Zngine p/b Mr. Restore|
|9||Tina Pic (USA) DNA Cycling p/b K4|
|10||Gillian Carleton (USA) Vanderkitten|
|11||Morgan Patton Brown (USA) BMW Development Team|
|12||Colleen Gulick (USA) BMW Development Team|
|13||Mary Maroon (USA) Twenty16|
|14||Sofia Arreola (Mex) Twenty16|
|15||Heather Fischer (GBr) DNA Cycling p/b K4|
|16||Annie Ewart (USA) Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies|
|17||Judith Wexler (USA) Folsom Bike/Cervelo|
|18||Kate Chilcott (NZl) Vanderkitten|
|19||Kendall Ryan (USA) Tibco / To The Top|
|20||Olivia Dillon (USA) Colavita/Fine Cooking|
|21||Sarah Lough (USA) BMW Development Team|
|22||Anika Todd (Can) Tibco / To The Top|
|23||Mia Loquai (USA) FCS/Zngine p/b Mr. Restore|
|24||Sha Zhao Xi (Chn) China Chongming-Giant-Champion System|
|25||Anna Sanders (USA) FCS/Zngine p/b Mr. Restore|
|26||Stephanie Roorda (Can) Canada||0:00:07|
|27||Anne Perry (USA) DNA Cycling p/b K4|
|28||Caitlin LaRoche (USA) Monster Media Racing|
|29||Amber Brown (USA) IRT-Reactor P/B JL Velo|
|30||BrittLee Bowman (USA) Stan's Notubes P/B Endurancewerx|
|31||Amber Vredenburg (USA) Jet Cycling|
|32||Jie Jiang Xiu (Chn) China Chongming-Giant-Champion System|
|33||Jasmin Glasser (Can) Tibco / To The Top|
|34||Annie Foreman-Mackey (Can) Canada|
|35||Sara Headley (USA) Tibco / To The Top||0:00:12|
|36||Laura Brown (Can) Colavita/Fine Cooking|
|37||Beth Newell (USA) BMW Development Team|
|38||Amber Gaffney (USA) Twenty16|
|39||Kemi Garvin (USA) DNA Cycling p/b K4||0:00:16|
|40||Rushlee Buchanan (NZl) UnitedHealthcare|
|41||Heather Ross (USA) Threshold Sports|
|42||Erica Zaveta (USA) FCS/Zngine p/b Mr. Restore|
|43||Mara Abbott (USA) UnitedHealthcare|
|44||Tayler Wiles (USA) Specialized-lululemon||0:00:18|
|45||Robin Farina (USA) Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI||0:00:43|
|46||Korina Huizar (NZl) Vanderkitten|
|47||Evelyn Stevens (USA) Specialized-lululemon|
|48||Lindsay Bayer (Irl) Colavita/Fine Cooking|
|49||Kimberly Fong (USA) Threshold Sports||0:01:26|
|50||Anna Grace Christiansen (USA) Specialized-lululemon||0:01:32|
|51||Heather Lipana (USA) Folsom Bike/Cervelo||0:01:43|
|52||Emily Thurston (USA) Threshold Sports|
|53||Mary-Ellen Ash (USA) Metromint|
|54||Erica Grief (USA) IRT-Reactor P/B JL Velo||0:01:46|
|55||Allison Beveridge (Can) Canada||0:01:47|
|56||Diane Moug (Can) Folsom Bike/Cervelo||0:01:48|
|57||Catherine Desserault (Can) Canada||0:02:01|
|58||Jessica Cerra (USA) Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI||0:02:38|
|59||Fiona Strouts (Can) Vanderkitten||0:02:50|
|60||Jessica Cutler (USA) FCS/Zngine p/b Mr. Restore|
|61||Eileen Mazzochette (USA) Metromint||0:03:30|
|62||Alison Tetrick (USA) Twenty16||0:03:49|
|63||Liza Rachetto (USA) Vanderkitten||0:04:31|
|64||Jennifer Whalen (USA) Spy Giant Ride p/b MRI||0:04:53|
|65||Martina Patella (USA) IRT-Reactor P/B JL Velo||0:04:55|
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Kirsten Frattini has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level all the way to the World Cup. She is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. Kirsten has worked in both print and digital publishing. She started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006, and was responsible for reporting from the US and Canadian racing scene. Now as a Production Editor, she produces international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits global news and writes features.
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