5 years ago by Sam Wiebe

Sara Poidevin Wins Colorado Classic

Young Canadian Sweeps Jersey Classifications with Bold Mountain Attack

In the thin air of Breckenridge, Colorado, Sara Poidevin was unstoppable in the second and final stage of the women's Colorado Classic. Poidevin soloed to the stage win, overall victory, Queen of the Mountains, Best Young Rider and Sprint titles. In the men's race, Sepp Kuss survived a high-speed crash in the last kilometer to move up to fourth overall.

“It is exhilarating to take this win for myself and the team,” said Poidevin. “A couple of weeks ago we were close at the Cascade Classic, so to be able to come away with the win today feels good. I attacked on the second to last lap. There was a rider up the road, UnitedHealthcare was chasing, and they had me outnumbered. Heading into the second QOM, I knew I had to give it a go by myself if I wanted a chance at the win. I was able to split up their team on the climb and knew if they were all spread out they couldn’t work together. If I was working hard, then everyone else was working just as hard."

Sara Poidevin crosses the line to win the 2017 Colorado Classic

Poidevin took the lead in the Queen of the Mountains competition yesterday in stage one, although today's mountainous circuit around Breckenridge would be decisive, with five steep ascents of Moonstone Road for a total 3500 ft of elevation gain. Poidevin struck early on lap two to claim more QOM points and then bided her time until the second QOM with two laps remaining. Despite the UnitedHealthcare squad having superior numbers, the young Canadian timed her attack perfectly to quickly gained a gap. On the final lap she dug deep and continued to put time into her rivals. With a two-minute lead at the finish, she raised her arms in victory, celebrating an emphatic win.

Rally Cycling controlled the race for a late move by Sepp Kuss

In the men’s race, it didn’t take long for the peloton to fracture on the demanding circuits. As riders drifted off the back, others gambled on long range attacks. Initially, the duo of TJ Eisenhart (Holowesko-Citadel) and Daniel Eaton (UnitedHealthcare) struck out and built a gap that at the halfway point had grown to almost five minutes. Behind the duo, a chase group of 13 formed with Rally Cycling setting pace in the peloton to set up Kuss for the stage victory. With four laps to go, Eisenhart dropped Eaton but was losing ground to the charging peloton. With three laps remaining, young climbing sensation Kuss, Alex Howes (Cannondale-Drapac) and Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo) pushed forward to catch Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly-Maxxis) and Manuel Senni (BMC), the last remnants of the chase group, and set their sites on the stage victory.

Eisenhart survived the penultimate lap with a gap of 35 seconds, but on the final climb, Stetina and Howes gapped Kuss and bridged to Eisenhart. Kuss fought valiantly over the top of Moonstone and charged down the final descent. As he and Senni entered a fast right-hand corner with a kilometer to go, Kuss lost his rear wheel and slid across the tarmac. Covered in patches of road rash, but uninjured, Kuss remounted and finished with a flat rear tire. Because Kuss fell within the final three kilometers, he finished with the same time as Senni and is fourth overall.

“I just took the corner too fast,” said Kuss. “We took it curb to curb, and I went wide and let it slide. I sometimes forget they aren’t mountain bikes! I’m ok, not injured, just disappointed. I felt good on the last climb but didn’t follow the wheels I should have. The team rode great all day and put me in a great position for the final laps. I am fourth overall, so tomorrow we just have to go for broke.”

Colorado Classic Stage 2 | Women
1. Sara Poidevin (Rally Cycling)
2. Tayler Wiles (UnitedHealthcare)
3. Abigail Mickey (Colavita/Bianchi)
4. Ruth Winder (UnitedHealthcare)
5. Katie Antonneau (Cylance)
6. Flavia Oliveira (Fearless Femme)
7. Whitney Allison (Colavita/Bianchi)
8. Leah Thomas (Sho-Air Twenty20)
9. Allie Dragoo (Sho-Air Twenty20)
10. Katie Hall (UnitedHealthcare)

Colorado Classic Final General Classification | Women
1. Sara Poidevin (Rally Cycling)
2. Tayler Wiles (Unitedhealthcare)
3. Abigail Mickey (Colavita/Bianchi)
4. Ruth Winder (Unitedhealthcare)
5. Leah Thomas (Sho-Air Twenty20)
6. Katie Antonneau (Cylance)
7. Flavia Oliveira (Fearless Femme)
8. Whitney Allison (Colavita/Bianchi)
9. Allie Dragoo (Sho-Air Twenty20)

Colorado Classic Final Sprint Classification
1. Sara Poidevin (Can) Rally Cycling

Colorado Classic Final Mountains Classification
1. Sara Poidevin (Can) Rally Cycling

Colorado Classic Final Best Young Rider
1. Sara Poidevin (Can) Rally Cycling

Colorado Classic Stage 2 | Men
1. Alex Howes (Cannondale-Drapac)
2. Taylor Eisenhart (Holowesko-Citadel)
3. Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo)
4. Manuel Senni (BMC)
5. Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly-Maxxis)
6. Brent Bookwalter (BMC)
7. Miguel Ángel Benito (Caja Rural)
8. Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac)
9. Vegard Stake Laengen (UAE Team Emirates)
10. Hugh Carthy (Cannondale-Drapac)
* 12. Sepp Kuss (Rally Cycling)

Colorado Classic General Classification After Stage 2 | Men

1. Taylor Eisenhart (Holowesko-Citadel)
2. Alex Howes (Cannondale-Drapac)
3. Peter Stetina (Trek-Segafredo)
4. Sepp Kuss (Rally Cycling)
5. Manuel Senni (BMC)
6. Serghei Tvetcov (Jelly Belly-Maxxis)
7. Brent Bookwalter (BMC)
8. Miguel Ángel Benito (Caja Rural)
9. Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac)
10. Vegard Stake Laengen (UAE Team Emirates)