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Mercury's Scott Moninger won today's wind swept 85 mile Sanger Road Race, followed by teammates Plamen Stoyanov and Henk Vogels.
The race started with the fastest neutral start ever as the riders were all fighting for position as cross wind section threatend to break up the race right off the bat. With 7-UP/Nutra Fig, Ofoto, Sierra Nevada, Prime Alliance, and Saturn all having riders in the field, the competition was hot. There were several crashes as riders were trying to find shelter from the wind.
On the first lap, seven riders broke free on the bunch and powered away, struggling with the winds, the group managed to gain a maximum gap of 1.30 from the peleton.
A second group went clear and started a pursuit of the leading group. In the lead group, John Leiswyn had a front wheel problem and was unfortunately dropped. He joined the third group and started to bring back the leaders.
Within two laps, Mike Sayers flatted out on the break and then there were only five riders left. The chase was on as Mercury and 7-UP combined to bring back the break.
The action continues tomorrow with the Bud Light Merced Criterium.
1 Scott Moninger (Mercury) 2 Plamen Stoyanov (Mercury) 3 Henk Vogels (Mercury) 4 Jesus Zarate (Mercury) 5 John Peters (Prime Alliance) 6 Mike Sayers (Mercury) 7 Chad Gerlach (Sierra Nevada)