Posted by Editoress on 09/4/05
San Francisco Grand Prix San Francisco CA
Report courtesy Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada
With two-time New Zealand Olympian Glen Mitchell finishing 5th and 2003 Canadian National Champion Dominique Perras in 10th, the Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada Professional Cycling Team had arguably its best day of racing all season in today's Barclays Global Investors Grand Prix SF -quite possibly the most difficult race of the entire year.
Soon after the race got underway on a gray San Francisco morning, Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada's Ben Jacques-Maynes jumped in the early breakaway, joined by his twin brother, Andy (Webcor Builders).
Behind the early break, a group of around 30 riders including Perras and Mitchell - but missing pre-race favorites like Levi Leipheimer (Gerolsteiner) and Chris Horner (Saunier Duval-Prodir) - split off the front of the main field.
Not long after, Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada's Tim Larkin rolled away from the main pack and bridged, giving Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada four riders in a front group of about 30 riders behind solo leader Mike Creed (Discovery Channel).
On the sixth and seventh laps, Larkin and Jacques-Maynes went to the front and provided some crucial impetus to keep the front group rolling along at a pace that proved sufficient to keep the chasing groups at bay.
On the seventh lap, Mitchell and John Lieswyn (Health Net p.b. Maxxis) followed an acceleration by Discovery Channel's Ryder Hesjedal and Jason McCartney and the quartet soon caught and dropped the spent Creed.
Hesjedal was dropped on the next lap, leaving Mitchell, Lieswyn and McCartney as the leading breakaway, 2 minutes ahead of a group of 20 riders including Perras.
The breakaway worked smoothly together, but Mitchell was unable to stay with McCartney and Lieswyn on the third-to-last trip up Taylor St.
Meanwhile, Gerolsteiner's Fabian Wegmann and Andrea Moletta were chasing at 30 seconds back, followed by a group with Colavita-Sutter Home's Mark McCormack and Davide Frattini, CSC's Luke Roberts, and Health Net-Maxxis' Mike Sayers.
The Gerolsteiner duo caught and passed Mitchell, but the New Zealander hung tough and rolled in fifth, 1:58 behind Wegmann - who won a 3-rider sprint after catching Lieswyn and McCartney - and with a minute in hand ahead of sixth place Sayers.
On the final time up Taylor St., Perras and Danny Pate (Jelly Belly-PoolGel) got away from the remaining 12 riders in the group, with Perras taking 10th behind Pate.
Back in the main field, Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada's other finishers were Jackson Stewart in 65th and Scott Zwizanski in 71st.
Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada also took 4th in the team classification and Mitchell placed 4th in the Master of the Mountain classification.
Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada Racing Manager, Robin Zellner commented, Glen and Dominique showed the experience and ability that make them true professionals today. I'm proud of them and how Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada rode as a team.
1. Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Gerolsteiner
2. John Lieswyn (USA) Health Net/Maxxis
3. Jason McCartney (USA) Discovery
4. Andrea Moletta (Ita) Gerolsteiner
5. Glen Mitchell (Kodak Gallery Sierra Nevada
6. Mike Sayers (USA) Health Net/Maxxis
7. Mark McCormack (USA) Colavita Sutter Homes
8. Luke Roberts (Aus) CSC
9. Danny Pate (USA) Jelly Belly PollGel
10. Dominique Perras (Can) Kodak Gallery Sierra Nevada
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