In Monday's grueling final stage at the Exergy Tour in Boise, Idaho, the original field of 103 participants was whittled down to just 34 finishers. The 47-mile course was comprised of a challenging, hilly circuit, but the suffering began at the start line.
Less than 100 meters into the race, a massive crash took down scores of riders and log-jammed the field. Those stuck behind were unable to catch back to the peloton, and the Specialized-Lululemon and Exergy TWENTY12 riders set an aggressive tempo. Ultimately, German Claudia Hausler (GreenEDGE-AIS) and USA's Evelyn Stevens (Specialized-Lululemon) broke away with nearly a one-minute lead. Hausler took the win, Stevens was second and Jasmin Glaesser, representing the Canadian National Team, (she also rides for Team Colavita!), rounded out the podium.
For the general classification, top honors went to Specialized-Lululemon in the team competition, while Stevens was crowned the overall victor. Stevens' teammates, Amber Neben and Clara Hughes, finished second and third overall. (As an added bonus, cycling fan and film/TV star Patrick Dempsey was on hand as the "Podium Boy" to reward the winner for their efforts.)
Team Colavita's Leah Guloien finished 33rd in general classification and was the only team member to survive the time cuts, log-jams, illness and injury at the end of the five-day event. Despite the drama of the tough weather, painful crashes and fierce competition, the team is already looking forward to Exergy Tour 2013; but, right now, we need a nap.
We're off to Philly for the Liberty Classic on June 3. Come on out and cheer the riders on!