NRC: New women's leader while Mancebo's lead grows atop standings

  
  


The USA Cycling National Racing Calendar (NRC) rolled into its fourth stop, the five-day SRAM Tour of the Gila in Silver City, N. M. The high temperatures, relentless courses and steep climbs, including the Gila Monster, made certain that a worthy winner rode off with the top prize.

MEN

Rory Sutherland celebrates winning the opening stage of the SRAM Tour of the Gila. (Photo by Mitchell Clinton, www.clintonphoto.com)
Rory Sutherland celebrates winning the opening stage of the SRAM Tour of the Gila. (Photo by Mitchell Clinton, www.clintonphoto.com)

Francisco Mancebo (ESP/Competitive Cyclist Racing Team) finished fourth overall at the SRAM Tour of the Gila to add to his lead atop the NRC men's standings. Mancebo placed within the top five in three of the five stages to bolster his position in the general classification. Rory Sutherland (AUS/UnitedHealthcare p/b Maxxis), who held the top spot in the GC from wire to wire, collected all of his 445 points over the weekend to move into second place 236 points behind Mancebo. Chad Beyer (Tucson, Ariz./Competitive Cyclist Racing Team) was the runner up in New Mexico after finishing third in three stages to help him jump from 18th into third place, 41 points behind Sutherland and 72 points ahead of Joe Dombrowski (Marshall, Va./Bontrager Livestrong Team). Dombrowski, a rider in USA Cycling's National Development Program, earned Best Young Rider recognition after finishing third overall. Dombrowski placed second in the opening stage and third in the third stage. In fifth place, 54 points behind Dombrowski is Philip Gaimon (Ellicot City, Md./Kenda 5 Hour Energy Geargrinder), who was second in last week's standings.

The stand-out riding by Mancebo and Beyer is certainly reflected in the NRC men's team standings as Competitive Cyclist Racing Team has opened a 451-point cushion on second-place Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies. Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies jumped from fourth into second overtaking Bissell Cycling and Kenda 5 Hour Energy, bumping each of those teams down one spot from last week's standings. Bissell Cycling sits in third place, 27 points behind Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies while Kenda 5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder is in fourth position 41 points behind Bissell Cycling. The new fifth-place team, Bontrager Livestrong Team was bolstered by stellar performances by riders who also participate in USA Cycling's National Development Program. In addition to Dombrowski's standout weekend, Bontrager Livestrong Team received strong efforts from Lawson Craddock (Austin, Texas) and Ian Boswell (Bend, Ore.). Craddock finished fifth overall after placing fifth in the third stage and winning the final stage, the Gila Monster. Boswell was close behind Craddock in the final stage after the talented tandem tamed the Gila Monster.

WOMEN

Kristin Armstrong topped the women's general classification from beginning to end. (Photo by Rob Narvaez, Gila Wilderness dot.com Photography)
Kristin Armstrong topped the women's general classification from beginning to end. (Photo by Rob Narvaez, Gila Wilderness dot.com Photography)

There is a new leader in the NRC women's standings. Jade Wilcoxson (Talent, Ore./Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) finished fourth in the general classification at the SRAM Tour of the Gila to bring her total to 330 and overtake last week's leader Megan Guarnier (Mountain View, Calif./Team TIBCO-To the Top). Small, who sits in second place only 20 points behind Wilcoxson, was the runner up in New Mexico after finishing no worse than third in any of the five stages. Alison Powers (Pinecliffe, Colo./NOW and Novartis for MS) strung together five top-five finishes during Gila to place third overall and jump from fifth place into third in the standings. Powers trails Small by only four points, but leads fourth-place by six points. In fourth place is the winner of the SRAM Tour of the Gila, Kristin Armstrong (Boise, Idaho/Team Exergy Twenty12), with 300 points. Armstrong won four of the five stages to top the women's general classification and move into fourth place in the NRC women's standings. Guarnier rounds out the top five, 63 points behind Small and Armstrong.

Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies remains the leader of the NRC women's team standings, holding a 481-point edge over the new second-place team Exergy Twenty12. With three of the top five riders in the general classification, Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies added 319 points to its margin atop the standings in one week. Exergy Twenty12 collected 370 points to jump from fifth last week into second place. Six points behind Exergy Twenty12 is Team TIBCO-To the Top, which slipped one spot in a week. NOW and Novartis for MS held its fourth-place position, trailing Team TIBCO-To the Top by only 28 points while holding a 135-point advantage on FCS-Rouse p/b Mr Restore.

Full results from the SRAM Tour of the Gila.

 

USA Cycling NRC Standings:

Men
1. Francisco Mancebo (ESP/Competitive Cyclist Racing Team) — 681
2. Rory Sutherland (AUS/UnitedHealthcare p/b Maxxis) — 445
3. Chad Beyer (Tucson, Ariz./Competitive Cyclist Racing Team) — 404
4. Joe Dombrowski (Marshall, Va./Bontrager Livestrong Team) — 332
5. Philip Gaimon (Ellicot City, Md./Kenda 5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder) — 278

Women
1. Jade Wilcoxson (Talent, Ore./Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) — 330 pts
2. Carmen Small (Durango, Colo./Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) — 310 pts
3. Alison Powers (Pinecliffe, Colo./NOW and Novartis for MS) — 306 pts
4. Kristin Armstrong-Savola (Boise, Idaho/Exergy Twenty 12) — 300 pts
5. Megan Guarnier (Mountain View, Calif./Team TIBCO-To the Top) — 237 pts

Men's Team
1. Competitive Cyclist Racing Team — 1250
2. Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies — 799
3. Bissell Cycling — 772
4. Kenda 5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder — 731
5. Bontrager Livestrong Team — 698

Women's Team
1. Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies — 983 pts
2. Exergy Twenty 12 — 502 pts
3. Team TIBCO-To the Top — 496 pts
4. NOW and Novartis for MS — 468 pts
5. FCS/Rouse p/b Mr Restore — 333 pts

 

For complete standings, visit the NRC's official webpage at usacycling.org/nrc.

The fifth of 11 NRC stops, the inaugural Exergy Tour, runs from May 24-28 throughout southwestern Idaho and will feature many of the top women's cycling teams in the world. If you can't make it out to the race, make sure you follow along with the Tour Tracker application.



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