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Atlanta 10k Classic - NE
USA, September 6, 2005
Quark, Monex take Atlanta wins
By E. Andra Whitworth
As thousands of athletes gathered beneath the early-morning skies in Marietta, Georgia, for the annual Atlanta 10K and 100K running and cycling events, Grace Fleury of the Quark cycling team expressed very ambivalent feelings toward this unique race -- sometimes referred to as The Stampede -- in which women make a mad 6-mile dash for their share of the lucrative $10,000 prize purse that pays 35-deep.
Well, Im really not a morning person, said Fleury, who said the early start time was not a factor in her favor. But theres no other race like this. Its a totally different style of race. Its fun for a change of pace.
A half-hour later and $1,000 richer after a crafty first-place finish, Fleury admitted she liked the race a bit better from the top of the podium than she did earlier from the dim, pre-dawn parking lot where she warmed up.Once I got here they were playing great Christian music and I could just go with it, she says.
Though the course is hilly and challenging, it favors strong sprinters with big chain rings, according to Jen Green and Kim Sawyer from Travelgirl Magazine. Theres a downhill finish with a kick at the bottom, said Sawyer, who also explained that breaks are rare on this course. You get crazy momentum, so you can always catch up to a break. Someone may get away for a prime, but theyre going to come back.
Today was the exception to that rule, when Fleury and Rebecca Larson of Colavita-Cooking Light covered a break initiated by Katherine Carroll of Ford-Basis and led the pack for the final mile.Fleury, who also took the first sprint prime, was able to come around Carroll for the sprint win.
Though Fleury normally works as a lead out for her teammate, Tina Pic, a mechanical problem put Pic out of contention early in the race. Normally, I would be here to work for Tina, who I think is the best sprinter in the country. But today she had a problem and I just happened to cover a break that stayed, so she rode it in for the win, she says.
Carroll, who took the second sprint prime, placed second, while Larson placed third. Lisa Matlock of Tamarack Resort was named Most Aggressive Rider.
The mens 100K race was aggressive from the start, with early and constant attacks from AG Edwards, Aerospace Engineering, Hincapie/Bianchi Sports, Locos, Krystal and Health Net. Ultimately, however, it was Emile Abraham, who kept a relatively low-profile during the meaty part of the race and was able to finesse the win in a frenzied bunch sprint to the finish line.
Riders began their attacks at the beginning, with small groups taking the lead, only to be swallowed by a vicious-looking peloton that morphed from a bunching swarm to single file going full-speed on the numerous descents.
AG Edwards rider Phil Gaimon made an impressive attack early in the race that lasted nearly 7 miles and proved to be the only sustained break of the day. But other riders, including Jittery Joes sprinter Jeff Hopkins, clearly were not going to let any breaks get away and the peloton easily harnessed the strength to pull them back.
I was trying hard really early, said Hopkins, who took second place. But about half way, I decided that nothing would stay, so I took it easier. The guys kept it all together. Everyone was doing their piece of work today.
The days most persistent cyclist, however, was Eric Murphy, of Aerospace Engineering, last years runner-up to George Hincapie and this years Most Aggressive Rider. We were unanimous in naming Eric Most Aggressive Rider, said USAC representative George Heagerty. He was there in every move anyone made off the front, and he even tried it himself a few times.
With five miles to go, the race heated up with frenzied attacks off the front and a series of crashes that ultimately knocked some of the favored racers out of contention for a win.
There were lots of crashes in the last five miles, said David Crowe of Locos.
At the end, I was just trying to dodge the crashes, said Scottie Weiss of Hincapie Sports/Bianchi.
Nevertheless, for the racers who didnt get caught up in crashes, the sprint was an exciting end for the days endeavor.
It was a crazy fast sprint, said Chris Knetsche, the fourth-place finisher from Hincapie Sports/Bianchi. I saw Jeff Hopkins and I knew that was the wheel to follow.
But for Hopkins, who approached the final stretch from the back of the pack, his last efforts to make up spots put him in a bad spot for the sprint with Abraham right behind. I was way back, and going mental trying to make up spots, he says. Emile was behind me, but I was too far out for the sprint.
Women, 10km 1 Grace Fleury (Quark Cycling) 2 Katherine Carroll (Ford-Basis) 3 Rebecca Larson (Colavita-Cooking Light) 4 Nicole Freedman (Ford-Basis) 5 Jen McRae (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 6 Tina Pic (Quark Cycling) 7 Brooke Blackwelder (Tamarack Resort) 8 Shannon Hutchison (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 9 Brenda Lyons (Victory Brewing) 10 Jennifer Green (Travelgirl) 11 Elizabeth Morse (TEAM Fuji) 12 Gina Voci (DeFeet) 13 Kim Foland (Travelgirl) 14 Megan Esmonde (Colavita-Cooking Light) 15 Lauren Trull (Diet Cheerwine) 16 Catherine Connell (Velo Voodoo) 17 Clara Beard (Diet Cheerwine) 18 Mandy Lozano (BMW-Bianchi) 19 Sheba Farrin (Hub Racing) 20 Kim Sawyer (Travelgirl) 21 Brooke O’Connor (Hub Racing) 22 Mary Hall (Tamarack Resort) 23 Iona Wynter (Forum) 24 Tracy Sproule (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 25 Shannon Koch (Team La’Sport) 26 Jana Repulski (Tamarack Resort) 27 Cara McCauley (BMW-Bianchi) 28 Nicole Brandt (Velo Club La Grange) 29 Leigh Valletti (Travelgirl) 30 Kari Bradley (Travelgirl) 31 Ann-Charlotte Andersson (ABRC) 32 Lisa Matlock (Tamarack Resort) 33 Julie Granger (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 34 DanI Dembrak (DeFeet) 35 Carrie Eller (Tamarack Resort) 36 Molly Freeman (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) Men, 100km 1 Emile Abraham (Monex) 2 Jeff Hopkins (Jittery Joe’s) 3 Wesley Garland (AG Edwards) 4 Chris Knetsche (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 5 Shawn Willard (Bikesource) 6 Joseph Coddington (Cane Creek) 7 Blair Craig (Just Fresh-Clif Bar) 8 Ryan Barnett (Blue Competition Cycles) 9 David Guttenplan (AG Edwards) 10 Robert Kollar (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 11 Jason Snow (Cycle Science) 12 Jake Rosenbarger (Loco’s) 13 Chad Gibson (Outdoorlights.com) 14 Hayden Brooks (AG Edwards) 15 Eric Murphy (Aerospace Engineering) 16 Rudy Robaina (Cycle Science) 17 Joseph Miller (Team FCS Compliance) 18 Rich Harper (Cane Creek) 19 Phillip Wikoff (Cane Creek) 20 Joe Fernandez (Aerospace Engineering) 21 Nathan Rogut (Team FCS Compliance) 22 Justin England (HealthNet) 23 Jed Schneider (AG Edwards) 24 Randy Parker (Herbalife) 25 Brent Faulk (Outdoor Chattanooga) 26 Brian Bibens (AG Edwards) 27 Shane Weaver (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 28 Darren Fuller (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 29 Gus Carrillo (Aerospace Engineering) 30 Marcus Morgan (Pactimo) 31 Dan Holt (Loco’s) 32 Jose Drapeau (Cherokee Cycling Club) 33 Jesse Lawler (Jittery Joe’s) 34 Peter Penzell (Snow Valley) 35 Jon Atkins (Smith Barney) 36 Todd Henrikson (Krystal) 37 Zach Bolian (Krystal) 38 A.J Smith (Aerospace Engineering) 39 Neal Arnett (Aerospace Engineering) 40 David Hall (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 41 Corey Fisher (Pactimo) 42 Spencer Beamer (Hot Tubes) 43 Russ Griebel (Pacesetter Steel) 44 Jonas Petterson (Cane Creek) 45 Chad Madan (Blue Competition Cycles) 46 Jason Jones (Camp Highland) 47 John Green (AG Edwards) 48 Bruno Langlois (Jittery Joe’s) 49 Ron Williams (GA Velo) 50 Christopher Monteleone (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 51 Charles Rossignol (Pacesetter Steel) 52 Stephen Colavito (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 53 Marc Anderson (Loco’s) 54 Travis Hagner (Land Rover) 55 Daniel Asbury (Forum) 56 Brady Rogers (GA Velo) 57 Andy Applegate (Honey Stinger) 58 Steven Carpenter (Outdoor Chattanooga) 59 Geri Mewett (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi) 60 Ian Holt (US Armed Forces) 61 Justin Joyce (Just Fresh-Clif Bar) 62 Matt Seagrave (Team FCS Compliance) 63 Unknown 64 Carlos Saavedra (UCL) 65 Daniel Larson (Cycle Science) 66 Phil Southerland (Loco’s) 67 Mark Hewitt (Cycle Science) 68 Philip Martindale (Gran Fondo) 69 Malachi Peacock (Honey Stinger) 70 Erik Koep (Aaron’s Corporate Furnishings) 71 Cleve Blackwell (GA Velo) 72 Patrick Weddell (Just Fresh-Clif Bar) 73 Scottie Weiss (Hincapie Sports/Bianchi)