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Commerce Bank Triple Crown

USA, June 3-10, 2007

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Race 1 - June 3: Tom Bamford Lancaster Classic, 85 miles

Eisel strongest in rain-soaked Lancaster

By Mark Zalewski, North American Editor in Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Bernhard Eisel (T-Mobile)
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

The forecast called for "tropical rain" as the remnants of tropical storm Barry floated up the Atlantic seaboard - though it was hardly a tropical setting around the streets of Lancaster, a city rebounding from economic downturns over the years, in the first race of the Commerce Bank Triple Crown. But that did not deter the racers from riding hard, with many breaks forming all day long. Out of the final break, which formed with just four laps of the 11.5km circuit remaining, came a hard-charging Bernhard Eisel (T-Mobile) who made his decisive solo move up the main climb and lasting to the finish, even with Sergey Lagutin (Navigators Insurance) catching him within the final kilometre.

"It's unbelievable how hard three-hour racing can be!" Eisel told Cyclingnews as he rolled to the team cars. "It's completely different compared to a ProTour race. It's like a national race - everyone attacking and wanting to be in the first group. In Europe the final of a race is like three hours long, and here the entire race is that - everyone is still fresh. It's harder that way, to control the bunch with only six riders. It's a bit different for us but it's still good, hard racing."

The racing was made even harder with the on-and-off rain all day, culminating in heavier showers on the final lap. "Normally I'm not a rider for the rain," explained Eisel, "but it was pretty warm today."

Navigators' Lagutin, who is the defending Triple Crown champion, seems to do well in the rain, having won the International Rheinland-Pfalz Rundfahrt in similar conditions. "I don't like the rain but I seem to be more strong in it!" he joked.

Sergey Lagutin (Navigators)
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

Lagutin was the only rider strong enough to make it up to Eisel after the race split apart on the final lap. "I was pretty sure I would attack there to make the group smaller," continued Eisel. "I saw nobody could follow me. Lagutin is a time trial champion so I was pretty sure that if anyone could follow me it was him or Danny Pate. I was waiting for [Lagutin] actually so that I could relax a bit and keep my muscles. He knew if he finished with me he could at least get second."

Back in the break, the rest of the riders tried attacking each other to get away, but also to stay away from the field which was closing in. In the final turn, Health Net-Maxxis' Frank Pipp took a page out of last year's Lancaster winner's tactics to take the third podium spot. "I hit them at the last turn," Pipp recalled, "just like Jackson Stewart did last year."

Eisel is not sure if he will now become the 'team leader' for the race, but is sure that his team will be even stronger for the upcoming races in Reading and Philadelphia. "The problem was we had two less guys here because they are still doing the Giro - Marco Pinotti and Aaron Olsen. And Hammond and Cavendish just arrived yesterday so they are a bit jet-lagged. Plus this is how our team works, every guy has a turn."

How it unfolded

The group
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

The first lap of the 11.5km circuit was taken at a slower pace than usual, with riders feeling out the technical course under the wet conditions. But with one lap complete the attacks started right away. Soon a significant break was able to form and get more than a minute on the peloton.

The UCI America Tour leader, Svein Tuft (Symmetrics) led the break with Eric Baumann (T-Mobile) Matt Guse (Caylon-Litespeed), Nicholas Wait (Kelly Benefits Strategies), Stephan Kincaid (Rite Aid), Christian Meier (Symmetrics), Tim Johnson (Health Net), Mike Creed (Slipstream), Brice Jones (Jelly Belly), Scottie Weiss (AEG-Toshiba) and Caleb Manion (Toyota United).

Initially, the break was a little disorganised, with Baumann sitting on the back while his team chased in the peloton. But eventually the break managed to organize, and Baumann pitched into the effort. The gap went up to more than a minute until some bad luck hit. First Manion had a rear flat on one of the small uphills coming back into town. Almost immediately Meier rear flatted as well, but had to roll a little longer while waiting for Mavic to finish with Manion. Manion made it back into the break but Meier was less lucky due to the delay. On the next lap, Tim Johnson had a flat in the exact same section of the course, and was unable to chase back on.

One of the breaks
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

With less firepower driving it, and with the CSC team working the front of the peloton, the break was brought back to within 30 seconds. Not wanting to make the catch too soon and allow counter attacks to have an easy chance at escaping, the peloton let the break dangle. Finally, with about 40 kilometres left to race, the break was finished off across the start/finish line.

High speeds initially deterred any counter-attacks from forming, but Christian Meier, likely frustrated by his poor luck in the first break, attacked with Marin Pederson (CSC) marking him. With a slight gap finally established, Pederson eventually pulled through. On the other side of the climb Eisel and a few others tried to bridge across, but were not successful. Eventually, the bridge attempts brought the peloton up to the break.

Svein Tuft (Symmetrics)
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

A few kilometres later, Eisel tried it again and brought Sergey Lagutin (Navigators), Jonathan Garcia (BMC), Trent Wilson (Jittery Joes), Svein Tuft (Symmetrics), Frank Pipp (Health Net-Maxxis) and Frank Travieso (AEG-Toshiba) with him. Tuft definitely earned the strong-man award for the day, with his all-white UCI leader's jersey soaked and browned from the road grime collected from riding in the breaks all day.

"That's a tough course... constant!" Tuft said. "You have to accelerate so much out of the corners because everyone slows down so much. [The breakaways] would take a little while for guys to really commit, but when they did it worked well.It's better to be off the front in this race because it yo-yos so much. I like to be off the front where I can keep it steady."

This break managed to make some progress on the peloton, with enough of the main teams represented. Alejandro Borrajo (Rite Aid) was able to bridge across rather easily followed by Danny Pate (Silpstream-Chipotle), but with much more effort required. The next two laps, Trent Wilson took the lead up the main climb, keeping the pace high by staying out of the saddle.

Frank Pipp (HealthNet)
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

On the last lap, Wilson again set the pace up the climb with Borrajo on his wheel. "It was opportunity to drop a few of the sprinters," said Wilson. "I ended up sitting up and Eisel just rode away over the top."

"I didn't know who the T-Mobile guy was initially," said Pipp, who was sitting on the back of the break up the climb, saving his legs for the sprint. "But when I found out it was Eisel I knew just from results I've seen that he is fast and strong. He was sitting going into the park and I knew he was going to launch, but sometimes there is just nothing you can do. He went and nobody could do anything about it."

On the smaller climbs coming back into town, Sergey Lagutin managed to do something about it, riding away from the remnants of the break in a solo effort to catch Eisel. The former U23 world champion finally did at about 700 metres, with Eisel actually sitting up to wait for him. The two then swapped a few pulls through the final turn at 300 metres where the sprinting began, with Eisel much stronger and fresher.

Teutenberg sticks to winning formula

Ina Teutenberg (T-Mobile)
Photo ©: Jon Devich
(Click for larger image)

T-Mobile teammates Ina Teutenberg and Kim Anderson repeated their tactics and strategy from last year's Lancaster race with precision today. Anderson patrolled the peloton, covering moves while Teutenberg rode in the breaks and sprinted to the win ahead of Laura Van Gilder (Cheerwine) and Catherine Powers (Aaron's Pro Cycling).

"Cover as much as I can and [Ina] always manages to get into a break," said Anderson. "Then just cover stuff trying to get across. With three to go almost four got across. Then we almost caught them at the finish, and then I would have had to sprint! I'd rather lay down across the road!" Anderson laughed.

"The group wasn't working too well together, it was mainly Laura and me in the last two laps," said Teutenberg. "I wanted to make the others work at the end. [Powers] made a really good attack at the top of the hill, it really surprised us. We caught her at 200 metres to go, but it was tough."

"I knew they were faster than me, especially Teresa Cliff-Ryan," said Powers. "I saw Ina and Laura looking at each other and I just went so hard. It's the best I could do."

Teutenberg and Anderson will be back at it on Thursday in Reading, and likely with more T-Mobile reinforcements like last year. And like last year, Teutenberg is certainly the race favourite.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Jonathan Devich/epicimages.us



1 Bernhard Eisel (Aut) T-Mobile                              3.18.41
2 Sergey Lagutin (Uzb) Navigators Insurance                         
3 Frank Pipp (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                          0.15
4 Danny Pate (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                          
5 Svein Tuft (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                          
6 Trent Wilson (Aus) Jittery Joe's                                  
7 Alejandro Alberto Borrajo (Arg) Rite Aid                          
8 David Vitoria (Swi) Bmc Racing Team                               
9 Frank Travieso (Cub) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                   1.23
10 Jorge Martinez (Col) Caico                                   1.59
11 Michael Blaudzun (Den) Team CSC                              2.04
12 Todd Henriksen (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                      
13 Jacob Erker (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                        
14 Shawn Milne (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                            
15 Andrew Pinfold (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                     
16 Emile Abraham (Tri) Priority Health p/b Bissel                   
17 Martin Pedersen (Den) Team CSC                                   
18 Luke Roberts (Aus) Team CSC                                      
19 Ken Hanson (USA) Bmc Racing Team                                 
20 Zach Bell (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                          
21 Alejandro Ivan Cortes (Col) Caico                                
22 Matt Shriver (USA) Jittery Joe's                                 
23 Cameron Evans (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                      
24 Kayle Leo Grande (USA) Rock Racing                               
25 Alex Hagman (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                         
26 Alex Candelario (USA) Jelly Belly                                
27 Jackson Stewart (USA) Bmc Racing Team                            
28 Cody Stevenson (Aus) Jittery Joe's                               
29 Edward King (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel                     
30 Charles Dionne (Can) Colavita-Sutter Home                        
31 Evan Elken (USA) Jittery Joe's                                   
32 Justin Spinelli (USA) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                   
33 Andy Guptill (USA) Colavita-Sutter Home                          
34 Sergio Hernandez (USA) Rock Racing                               
35 Benjamin Brooks (Aus) Navigators Insurance                       
36 Ian Macgregor (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                      
37 Anthony Colby (USA) Colavita-Sutter Home                         
38 Martin Gilbert (Can) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                    
39 Francois Parisien (Can) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                  
40 Eric Wohlebert (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                     
41 Jake Rytlewski (USA) Rite Aid                                    
42 Taylor Tolleson (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                    
43 Viktor Rapinski (Blr) Navigators Insurance                       
44 Daniel Bowman (USA) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                     
45 John Freddy Para (Col) Tecos De La Universidad                   
46 Dominique Rollin (Can) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada           
47 Mark Walters (Can) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada               
48 Yosvani Falcon (Cub) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                      
49 Hector Hugo Rangel (Mex) Tecos De La Universidad                 
50 Oleg Grishkin (Rus) Navigators Insurance                         
51 Ben Day (Aus) Navigators Insurance                               
52 Jason Donald (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                       
53 James Meadley (Aus) Jelly Belly                                  
54 Kyle Gritters (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                          
55 Valery Kobzarenko (Ukr) Navigators Insurance                     
56 Michael Creed (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                      
57 Roger Hammond (GBr) T-Mobile                                     
58 Neil Shirley (USA) Jittery Joe's                                 
59 Austin King (USA) Jittery Joe's                                  
60 Daniel Vaillancourt (USA) Colavita-Sutter Home                   
61 Jesse Anthony (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada              
62 Andrew Randell (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                     
63 Chris Wherry (USA) Toyota-United                                 
64 Christian Meier (Can) Symmetrics Cycling Team                    
65 Eric Baumann (Ger) T-Mobile                                      
66 Caleb Manion (Aus) Toyota-United                                 
67 Mike Sayers (USA) Bmc Racing Team                                
68 Brice Jones (USA) Jelly Belly                                    
69 Rory Sutherland (Aus) Health Net - Maxxis                        
70 Gregorio Ladino (Col) Tecos De La Universidad                    
71 Javier De Jesus Zapata (Col) Caico                           2.32
72 Rudolph Napolitano (USA) Rock Racing                         2.51
73 Matthew Guse (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                        3.02
74 Scott Zwizanski (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel             3.29
75 Nick Reistad (USA) Jelly Belly                                   
76 Fausto Marcelino Esparza (Mex) Tecos De La Universidad       3.49
77 Matthew Rice (Aus) Jelly Belly                               3.55
78 Henk Vogels (Aus) Toyota-United                                  
79 Andrew Bajadali (USA) Jelly Belly                                
80 Karl Menzies (Aus) Health Net - Maxxis                           
81 Charles Bradley Huff (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle               
82 Juan Pablo Magallanes (Mex) Tecos De La Universidad          3.59
83 David Veilleux (Can) Jittery Joe's                           9.17
DNF Alejandro Acton (Arg) Colavita-Sutter Home                      
DNF Gustavo Artacho (Arg) Colavita-Sutter Home                      
DNF Eudaldo Asencio (PuR) Caico                                     
DNF Ian Ayers (USA) Rite Aid                                        
DNF Rahsaan Bahati (USA) Rock Racing                                
DNF Ryan Belliveau (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                         
DNF Brooke Boocock (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                         
DNF Mark Cavendish (GBr) T-Mobile                                   
DNF Aidan Charles (USA) Nerac                                       
DNF Hilton Clarke (Aus) Navigators Insurance                        
DNF Eduardo Colon (PuR) Caico                                       
DNF Phil Cortes (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                            
DNF Wendy Cruz (Dom) Caico                                          
DNF Ryan Dewald (USA) Rite Aid                                      
DNF Michael Dietrich (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada          
DNF Alec Donahue (USA) Nerac                                        
DNF William Elliston (USA) Rite Aid                                 
DNF Richard England (Aus) Priority Health p/b Bissel                
DNF Agustin Font (PuR) Caico                                        
DNF Christopher Frederick (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork              
DNF Mariano Friedick (USA) Rock Racing                              
DNF Jos-Manuel Garcia (Mex) Toyota-United                           
DNF Alexander Gonzalez (Col) Caico                                  
DNF Matthew Harley Goss (Aus) Team CSC                              
DNF Cesar Augusto Grajales (Col) Jittery Joe's                      
DNF Herberth Gutierrez (Col) Tecos De La Universidad                
DNF Juan Jose Haedo (Arg) Team CSC                                  
DNF Chad Hartley (USA) Bmc Racing Team                              
DNF Peter Hatton (Aus) Colavita-Sutter Home                         
DNF Greg Henderson (NZl) T-Mobile                                   
DNF Daniel Holt (USA) Nerac                                         
DNF Graham Howard (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel                  
DNF Alex Howes (USA) Slipstream p/b Chipotle                        
DNF Allan Johansen (Den) Team CSC                                   
DNF Timothy Johnson (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                       
DNF Michael Jones (USA) Jelly Belly                                 
DNF Eric Keim (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                          
DNF Stephen Kincaid (USA) Rite Aid                                  
DNF Robbie King (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel                    
DNF Kasper Klostergaard_Larsen (Den) Team CSC                       
DNF Peter Lopinto (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada             
DNF Erik Lyman (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                             
DNF Luis Fernando Macias Hernandez (Mex) Tecos De La Universidad    
DNF Sterling Magnell (USA) Rock Racing                              
DNF David Mccann (Irl) Colavita-Sutter Home                         
DNF Dave Mccook (USA) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                      
DNF Bryce Mead (USA) Jelly Belly                                    
DNF Scott Moninger (USA) Bmc Racing Team                            
DNF John Murphy (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                           
DNF Adam Myerson (USA) Nerac                                        
DNF Keith Norris (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                       
DNF Michael Norton (USA) Rite Aid                                   
DNF Scott Nydam (USA) Bmc Racing Team                               
DNF Kirk O'Bee (USA) Health Net - Maxxis                            
DNF Cody O'Rielly (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada             
DNF Jakob Piil (Den) T-Mobile                                       
DNF Predrag Prokic (USA) Aeg-Toshiba-Jetnetwork                     
DNF Ben Raby (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada                  
DNF Greg Reain (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                             
DNF Jacob Rosenbarger (USA) Bmc Racing Team                         
DNF Ryan Roth (Can) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                        
DNF Brian Sheedy (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel                   
DNF Ivan Stevic (SCG) Toyota-United                                 
DNF Sean Sullivan (Aus) Toyota-United                               
DNF Jonathan Sundt (USA) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                   
DNF Adam Switters (USA) Rock Racing                                 
DNF Dan Timmerman (USA) Kodak Gallery p/b Sierra Nevada             
DNF Jose Carlos Valdez (Mex) Tecos De La Universidad                
DNF Bradley Viera (USA) Rite Aid                                    
DNF Charly Vives (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                           
DNF Maxime Vives (Can) Calyon - Litespeed                           
DNF Nicholas Waite (USA) Kelly Benefit / Medifast                   
DNF Patrick Walsh (USA) Nerac                                       
DNF Kyle Wamsley (USA) Navigators Insurance                         
DNF David Wiswell (USA) Nerac                                       
DNF Todd Yezefski (USA) Nerac                                       
DNF Tom Zirbel (USA) Priority Health p/b Bissel                     
1 Ina-yoko Teutenberg (USA) T-Mobile Pro Cycling Team                 55.10
2 Laura Van Gilder (USA) Cheerwine                                          
3 Catherine Powers (USA) Aaron's Corporate Furnishings                     
4 Theresa Cliff-ryan (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                       
5 Tillotson Sarah (USA) Colavita Racing Inc                            0.03
6 Sarah Caravella (USA) Aaron's Corporate Furnishings                      
7 Erica Allar (USA) Juice Plus                                             
8 Kelly Benjamin (USA) Cheerwine                                           
9 Dickey MacKenzie (USA) Colavita Racing Inc                               
10 Shannon Hutchinson-krupat (USA) Aaron's Corporate Furnishings           
11 Jenette Williams (USA) Hub Racing                                       
12 Christina Dekraay (USA) Ht Naturals/Bicycle Sport                       
13 Tricia Camila (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                           
14 Cromwell Tiffany (Aus) Colavita Racing Inc                              
15 Rebecca Larson (USA) Aaron's Corporate Furnishings                      
16 Leigh Valletti (USA) Targetraining                                      
17 Rushlee Buchanan (Can) Jazz Apple Cycling Team                          
18 Marinez Veronica (Arg) Jazz Apple Cycling Team                          
19 Laura Bowles (USA) Advil Chapstick                                      
20 Lisa Jellett (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                            
21 Wellons Rebecca (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                         
22 Kacey Mandefield (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                        
23 Jessie Maclean (USA) Verducci Breakaway Racing                          
24 Mara Miller (USA) Advil Chapstick                                       
25 Kathryn Clark (USA) Harris Teeter Naturals                              
26 Kimberly Geist (USA) Team Lipton                                        
27 Natalie Klemko (USA) Advil Chapstick                                    
28 Yarden Golan (USA) Targetraining                                        
29 Andrea Leubbe (USA) Juice Plus                                          
30 Sarah Bamberger (USA) Cheerwine                                         
31 Sarah Uhl (USA) Cheerwine                                               
32 Lenore Imhof (USA) Colavita Racing Inc                                  
33 Dale Tye (USA) Hub Racing                                               
34 Kim Anderson (USA) T-Mobile Pro Cycling Team                            
35 Robin Farina (USA) Targetraining                                    0.08

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