TOAD’15: Waukesha Carl Zach Classic
Day 4 of 11 (Sunday, June 21, 2015) The Tour of America’s Dairyland presented by Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board continued Sunday in Waukesha for the Couri Insurance Carl Zach Cycling Classic.
Pepper Palace Pic Stays in Pink; Astellas’ Feehery Claims Victory in Tight Race
The Pro Women continue to exhibit exceptional experience, strength and skill, foreshadowing stellar racing for the remaining seven days of the ToAD omnium competition. Under the influence of hot sun and big primes, teamwork shined Sunday, with Pepper Palace, Fearless Femme, ISCorp-SmartChoice MRI, UnitedHealthcare and Mellow Mushroom on point.
Mellow Mushroom’s Laura Van Gilder and Kristin LaSasso lead the charge with three to go as Van Gilder tucked behind UHC’s Abigail Mickey with two remaining. Coming down the final line, racers were four wide as Tina Pic (Pepper Palace) powered through for the win with Van Gilder and Lauretta Hanson crossing the line, second and third, respectively. Cari Higgins (UnitedHealthCare) took fourth, after competing in the Masters 1-2 Men’s race, immediately preceding the Pro Women’s race. Pic takes back the pink Boston Store Overall Leader Jersey but the competition is tight among some of the best female athletes in our sport. Nicole Mertz (ISCorp) went home in the green Oarsman Capital Cat 2 Amateur jersey, another close omnium race. ISCorp retains the lead in the SmartChoice MRI Team Omnium standings but Fearless Femme is within reach.
The Pro Men put on a phenomenal show before a near record crowd in Waukesha. Fast from the gun, it was a revolving door at the front on a day with $1,200 in Pro Men primes. The day’s top story, the break of 11, which formed with 20 laps remaining: Rob White (Avant), Astellas’ Brandon Feehery and Dan Gardner, Glenn O’Shea (Budget Forklift), Omar Mendoza (Liciclismo-Meta), Adam Leibovitz (Bissell-ABG), Grant Erhard (SBR Racing), Aldo Ino Ilesic (AltoVelo-SeaSucker), Ruben Companioni Blanco (Stradalli-Safetti), Owen Gillott (Hagen-Berman) and Emile Abraham (Texas Roadhouse), who won the Masters 1-2 racer earlier in the day.
Their boys up the road, Astellas and Budget Forklift minded the field with impressive blocking. Four laps to go, the gap from the break to the field was just nine seconds. Three remaining, the field was caught, and it was anyone’s race. Around the final turn, screaming down the final stretch, the break and the field blending like a delicious smoothie, the finish line cameras eventually called it final: Astella’s Feehery for the win, O’Shea second, Ilesic third. Spectacular finish. Feehery takes over the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board Yellow Overall Leader jersey while Jose Frank Rodriquez stays in the Oarsman Green Cat 2 Amateur jersey. Both omnium competitions remain close. Alto-Velo Seasucker stays atop the SmartChoice MRI Team Omnium standings.
Tour of America’s Dairyland Day 5 travels to State Fair Park on Monday for a day of racing at The Milwaukee Mile.
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