The Optum p/b KBS Men’s team continue their Euro Campaign at the UCI 1.1, Klasika Primavera, where the men would go up against the likes of Alberto Contador, Rory Sutherland, and eventual race winner Rui Costa from Movistar. The team aimed to take home another Special Sprint Jersey following Jesse Anthony’s performance in last week’s GP Miguel Indurain, as well as get some additional miles in their legs, prior to the last race in Europe, The Vuelta a Castilla y León.
Race Report from Eric Wohlberg
Today’s race was the 172 km Klasika Primavera, consisting of three laps around a very tough, mountainous circuit. The Pro Tour teams were very aggressive from the start and were determined to keep all the breaks to a maximum size of three – five riders early on. We tagged as many moves as possible with Mike Friedman, Eric Young, Ken Hanson, and Tom Soladay, saving Marsh, Jesse and Salas for the finishing circuits. We wanted to have a crack at the special sprint and the KOM from an early break, as we figured this was our best chance. Finally, a small 3-man move went and the break was given 6 minutes. The riders were strong and the nature break helped the gap. It was clear that both the Sprint and KOM winner would be decided from the early break, ending our hopes for another special sprint prize.
Our riders, Hanson, Soladay, Young, and Friedman helped keep our climbers in good position coming into the tough cat 2 and cat 3 climbs that made up the 20Km finishing circuit.
Marsh, Jesse, and Sebastian survived the first two circuits well, the last time up; the heat was on big time. Marsh crested on the back of the second group, and Jesse was just pinched off. Sebastian had a slow leak in his front wheel and didn’t know it until he was dropped. Unfortunately, we had already moved up the road with the car and were unable to offer him assistance.
It was a good solid effort for the team, especially as we had three guys hit the deck earlier in the day (Soladay/Marsh/Eric: all relatively lightly) and this was a very strong field.
We are hoping for some dry weather so we can get in some good days of training before heading to Vuelta a Castilla y León.
1 3 COSTA, Rui POR MOV 4h07’58″
2 19 URTASUN, Pablo ESP EUS m.t.
3 21 CONTADOR, Alberto ESP TST m.t.
4 5 INTXAUSTI, Beñat ESP MOV m.t.
5 4 HERRADA, José ESP MOV m.t.
6 27 SUTHERLAND, Rony AUS TST m.t.
7 75 PRADES, Eduard ESP OFM m.t.
8 31 EL FARES, Julien FRA SOJ m.t.
9 61 CALDERON, Edson COL CO4 m.t.
10 104 SHALUNOV, Evgeny RUS LOK m.t.
56 82 COOPER, Marsh CAN OPM a 02’11″
62 81 ANTHONY, Jesse USA OPM a 03’53″