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Faulkner Honda Harrisburg Criterium

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Saturday July 12, 2003

Olympic gold medallist makes headlines

By John Alsedek

From 1989 until 1991, the city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania played host to some of the world's greatest professional cyclists - including the likes of three-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond - as it was a stage finish in the world-famous Tour de Trump/Tour DuPont. While it's been more than a decade since that gone-but-not-forgotten event has graced central Pennsylvania, first-rate bicycle racing action returned to the state's capital, as the Faulkner Honda Harrisburg Criterium took place on Saturday, July 12. Held on a technically challenging 3.5- kilometer circuit that started and finished in front of the Capitol Building, the day's racing produced a number of worthy victors, including Sydney Olympic gold medalist Marty Nothstein (Navigators).

Women Pro/1/2/3

While misunderstandings regarding who was eligible to compete in the Women's Pro/1/2/3 event led to a number of high-profile riders, including former Junior World Champion Sarah Uhl, Australian track star Kerry Cohen, and the Team Snow Valley duo of Liz Begosh and Kristy Scheffenacker either skipping the day's racing or competing in one of the men's categories, fans were still treated to quite a display in the Women's event, which was also doubling as the Pennsylvania State Criterium Championship.

The attacks began on the first of the ten laps, as 2002 State Champion Nonnie Howard (Evolution Racing) gained a slight advantage before being reeled back in. One circuit later, a three-rider break of Alison Fischer (East Coast Velo), Beth Leasure (Velo Clips), and Jacqueline Paull (Colavita/Bolla) had sprung clear, picking up seven seconds in short order. But, while the three women were working reasonably well together, Leasure felt that she could do better on her own, and promptly proved it, soloing away and quickly gaining 30 seconds while her erstwhile companions were absorbed by the pack. From that point on, Leasure would continue to gain time.

By the halfway mark, she was 1:10 up on a chase group of Fischer, Howard, and Paull, and 1:30 ahead of the pack; by the finish, she was over two minutes up on everyone else, and rolled in comfortably to the victory. Meanwhile, Fischer, Howard, and Paull stayed well ahead of the peloton for second through fourth; however, Fischer and Paull were relegated due to an alleged infraction involving an overtaking Men's field, and Howard moved up into second place, defending her state title in the process. Marcie Massaro (Tri-State Velo) placed third. Afterwards, Leasure explained her ride: "I'm preparing for the upcoming 'International' Tour de 'Toona, so I wanted to make sure that I got a good, hard effort in today. I'm really excited to win here today- it's a beautiful course and a beautiful city!"

Pro/1/2/3 Men

Meanwhile, in the featured Pro/1/2/3 Men's event, affairs were dominated by another breakaway. However, instead of a solo effort, this one consisted of a select group of top racers: 2000 Olympic Champion Nothstein, 2002 World Duathlon Champion Josh Beck (, 2002 National Madison Champion Kyle Wamsley (T.E.A.M. Fuji), plus the Beans/Lite Bites trio of Trey Reinhardt, Dean Rittenhouse, and pioneering U.S. professional Steve Speaks, Scott Zwizanski (Team Snow Valley), and the break's initiator, Mike Miller (Carrera).

The eight men built up a cushion of 30 seconds before the field rumbled to life, as Mark Light (Beans/Lite Bites) tried to solo up and help his teammates with super-sprinter Nothstein. While Light was quickly reeled in, Wamsley's track racing partner and Fuji teammate, Bobby Lea, launched a furious one-man effort that shaved nearly half of the break's one-minute-plus lead in less than two laps. However, it was too much, too soon, and Lea blew spectacularly, pulling out of the race in the start/finish area.

Meanwhile, up front, the eight became six: after doing all he could for Rittenhouse and Speaks, Reinhardt dropped back to the pack, while Zwizanski rode solo briefly till being joined by chasers Dave Black (Lancaster Brewing Company) and Boyd Johnson. From that point on, both chase and field (which included one woman, Saturn's Laura Van Gilder) would steadily lose time to the charging sextet. With three laps remaining, they were one minute up on the three chasers, and 1:58 ahead of the foundering field; one lap later, the gallant Miller- who had already placed second in the Men's 30+ race- would come off the back, riding in limbo between break and chase.

The finish came down to a five-up dash to the line, in which Speaks got through the final turn first despite a bold move inside by Wamsley, only to see Nothstein use his awesome track-honed sprint to blow by the others for the win. Speaks, who admitted afterwards that "I just didn't feel right all day - my legs weren't great", held on for second ahead of Wamsley, with Carlisle native Beck fourth and Rittenhouse fifth.

Once the day's racing was over, race director Mike Peters could wax a bit philosophical about the whole thing. After jokingly mentioning that "I created this really cool race- the very sort of event I'd want to do myself- and have yet to get to race in it myself!", Peters proudly pointed to increased attendance over its inaugural edition in 2002, and mentioned that his goal is to make it "a huge East Coast race over the next few years." The Faulkner Honda Harrisburg Criterium was sponsored by Faulkner Honda, Peters Rice Associates, PSECU, NetComm, and CASA, the official race charity, which trains and pays advocates who aid abused children in courtroom environments.


Pro/1/2/3 Men
1 Marty Nothstein (Navigators)
2 Steve Speaks (Beans/Lite Bites)
3 Kyle Wamsley (T.E.A.M. Fuji)
4 Josh Beck (Sportsbook.Com)
5 Dean Rittenhouse (Beans/Lite Bites)
6 Scott Zwizanski (Snow Valley)
7 Boyd Johnson
8 Dave Black (Lancaster Brewing Company)
9 Mike Miller (Carrera)
10 Karl Woitas (Beans/Lite Bites)
Pro/1/2/3 Women
1 Beth Leasure (Velo Clips)
2 Nonnie Howard (Evolution Racing)
3 Marcie Massaro (Tri-State Velo)
4 Barbara Grabowski (Allegheny Cycling)
5 Tammy Ebersole (Evolution Racing)
6 Monique Rodenbaugh
7 Kathryn Wilder
8 Alison Fischer (East Coast Velo)
9 Jacqueline Paull (Colavita/Bolla)
10 Tracy Lea (T.E.A.M. Fuji)
Men Category 3/4
1 Chris Kuhl
2 Darco Lalevic
3 Joe Manacchio
4 Glenn Turner
5 Kevin Swanson
6 Nathan Deibert
7 Steve Gergely
8 Mike Sharkey
9 Ryan Sohmer
10 Dan Fry
Men Category 4/5
1 Joaquim Carvalho
2 Charles Denton
3 John Soemer
4 Wayne Hufner
5 Alexander Roberts
6 Andrew Maligio
7 Eric Stevens
8 Roger St. Paul
9 Eric Moyer
10 Franky Zgoda
Men 30+
1 Ramon Benitez
2 Mike Miller
3 David Osborne
4 Dave Black
5 Thomas Nagy
6 Robert Russell
7 Gunner Shogren
8 Dwayne Clinton
9 Tim Yost
10 Garett Schreier
Men 40+
1 Art Mchugh
2 Aubrey Gordon
3 Bruce Donaghy
4 George Theall
5 Joseph Manacchio
6 Jeff Gustafson
7 Steven Wright
8 Desmond Slattery
9 David Osborne
10 Dwayne Clinton
Men Juniors
1 David Brown
2 Kyle Hammaker
3 Colton Valentine
4 Alexander Scott
5 Syd Lea
6 Nick Box
7 Greg Van Wagner
8 P.J. Ferris
9 Graham Coy
10 Michael Lefiore
Women Category 4
1 Amy Wilson
2 Pam Goss
3 Diane Clinton
4 Alaina Gurski
5 Nancy Ann Shapiro
6 Janine Dimond
7 Shannon Korchnab
8 Marie Lander 

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