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US Elite National Championships - CN
Pennsylvania, USA, May 21-22, 2003
Race 3 - May 22: Elite & Espoir Women road race, 134km
Neben Finally Takes the Jersey
By Kristy Scrymgeour
T-Mobile used their numbers well in today's National Road Race held Seven Springs, Pennsylvania with Amber Neben taking the win convincingly after two years of being so close.
The race was held on a 43km loop of which the riders completed three times. Winding through the ski resort the course was challenging and consistently hilly. "It was a hard course" a giggling Neben told Cyclingnews, as she attempted to burn down the kitchen whilst cooking her post race dinner. "But we had the numbers and we wanted to take advantage of that and our strength".
And use their numbers, they did. At the end of the first lap the T-Mobile crew started setting a tempo up the climb that would split the bunch into pieces "At the top of the climb we had a break of eight. Five of us were T-Mobile and then there was Lynn Gaggioli (VeloBella), Christine Thornburne (Vaniqa/Red 5 Racing) and Kate Maher (Basis). We kept the pace hard making sure the break would stay away and then we started attacking one after the other".
Neben claims she was the fortunate to be the one who stayed away. "It felt great to be part of a team that worked so well together and I feel lucky to be the one that took the honours at the end of the day". With her attack on the hill at the end of the last lap giving her the perfect gap, Neben put her head down and never looked back "I just settled into a steady rhythm and I felt comfortable that my team were doing a great job behind me" said Neben.
Behind her the break began to shatter as Kristin Armstrong and Kimberly Bruckner broke away from the remaining seven and rode together to the finish. They took second and third place respectively arriving at the finish line 4'29" behind Neben. Following them by a further two minutes was Gaggioli who rode a great race to be the first non T-Mobile rider home for the day.
The win was particularly satisfying for Neben who has placed second two years running "It feels sweet. It hasn't sunk in yet, but having been so close before gives you a higher respect for what it takes and makes winning even more special".
The T-Mobile team now has a much needed rest before they head to Montreal, Canada for the next round of the World Cup. "We are really hoping to do well there" Commented Neben. " Dede (Demet Barry) won it last year and we have such a strong team with so much depth. Right now I am thankful that we get a little rest".
Images by Andy Lee/usacycling.org
1 Amber Neben (T-Mobile) 4.06.16 2 Kristin Armstrong (T-Mobile) 4.29 3 Kimberly Bruckner (T-Mobile) 4 Lynn Gaggioli (VeloBella) 6.30 5 Deidre Barry (T-Mobile) 6.42 6 Katrina Grove (T-Mobile) 6.53 7 Christine Thorburn (Vaniqa/Red 5 Racing) 7.49 8 Kate Maher (Basis) 9.32 9 Heather Albert (Basis) 15.42 10 Kimberly Anderson (T-Mobile) 16.31 11 Charmain Breon (Freddie Fu Cycling Team) 17.20 12 Kori Kelly (Diet Rite) 13 Tina Mayolo-Pic (Diet Rite) 17.51 14 Dorothy Cowden (T-Mobile) 15 Laura Van Guilder (Saturn Cycling Team) 16 Rhonda Quick (Vaniqa/Red 5 Racing) 17 Kristy Scheffenacker (Team Snow Valley) 18.07 18 Brooke Ourada (Team Goldys) 18.14 19 Maggie Shirley (Genesis Scuba/FFCC) 18.19 20 Katherine Sherwin (Zombies) 21 Megan Monroe (Americas Dairyland) 22 Stacey Peters (T-Mobile) 19.20 23 Mari Holden (T-Mobile) 24 Kristin Johnson (T-Mobile) 19.46 25 Joan Wilson (TDS) 20.22 26 Elizabeth Begosh (Team Snow Valley) 20.38 27 Lara Kroepsch (T-Mobile) 20.50 28 Grace Fleury (Genesis Scuba/FFCC) 22.48 29 Melissa Sanborn (ICO) 30 Sarah Konrad (Basis) 31 Nicole Freedman (Basis) Finished early by referees 32 Sarah Tillotson (ABD Cycling Team) 32 Shawn Heidgen (TDS) 32 Rook Campbell (Hi Tech Bikes/Harbour Lights) 32 Kelly Benjamin (ABD Cycling Team) 32 Carla Koehler (Minute Maid/Dasani/La Grange) 32 Beth Leasure (Veloclips) 32 Tina Skelly-Kunstbeck (LSV/Trek/VW) 32 Heidi Witherell (Vaniqa/Red 5 Racing) 32 Susan Duff (Tri-State Velo/Amoroso.Victory) 32 Kerry Soraci (Diet Rite) 32 Michele Bote (LSV/Trek/VW) 32 Dana Walton (Team Snow Valley) 32 Rebecca Clark (ORC) 32 Brooke O'connor (Colavita-Bolla) 32 Heidi Woolever (Team Snow Valley) 32 Diane Castor (Tri-State Velo/Amoroso.Victory) 32 Betsy Sellers (Revolution/Rock Creek Racers) 32 Miranda Moon (Team Rubicon/United Finance) 32 Laury Saligman (Revolution RCR)