George Hincapie Wins His Third U.S. Professional Road Cycling Championship
One of the most decorated American cyclists of his generation, George Hincapie (Team Columbia-High Road) added a third Stars-and-Stripes jersey to his collection, winning the Greenville Hospital Systems USA Cycling Professional Road Race Championship in front of his hometown crowd. Hincapie jumped on a late race break on the last climb over Paris Mountain and outsprinted Andrew Bajadali (Boulder, Colo./Kelly Benefit Strategies) and Ken Louder (Salt Lake City, Utah/BMC) to earn the Stars-and-Stripes following three finishing circuits in downtown Greenville on Sunday.
“This one is special because I haven’t raced in five weeks so I wasn’t really sure how I would feel,” commented Hincapie. “It was a ton of pressure, but it was a very special day for my family and the city of Greenville.”
The trio out sprinted five additional breakaway companions to the line in the final stretch of the 115-mile affair. The only riders with teammates in the final break, BMC’s Brent Bookwalter (Banner Elk, N.C.) finished fourth while Matthew Busche (Wauwatosa, Wis./Kelly Benefit Strategies) was fifth.
To the delight of the crowd in downtown Greenville, yesterday’s USA Cycling Professional Time Trial national champion David Zabriskie (Salt Lake City, Utah/Garmin-Slipstream) made a break for it off the line leading the group through the three small opening downtown circuits. The only American to win a stage of all three Grand Tours grew his lead to nearly four minutes before being absorbed by the charging peloton nearly halfway through the 115-mile affair.
After a bit of disorganization, it was Chris Jones (Auburn, Calif./Team Type I) who finally got away up the final of four ascents up Paris Mountain. He was soon however caught by several riders who worked together to take a small lead decending the mountain. Despite a strong chase, the lead group of eight riders looked to be in control through the final three downtown circuits and after a surge by Ian McKissick (Everett, Wash./BMC), “Big George” timed the sprint perfectly and grabbed his first national title since the debut of the event in Greenville in 2006.
Thousands of fans lined the course for the finish as well as all of the day’s festivities, including 750 charity riders participating in the Stars-and-Stripes Challenge, more than 150 in the kid’s race and dozens contesting the U.S. Handcycling Series criterium.
“Up on the climb, it was pretty amazing,” said Bajadali of the crowds. “It was super loud. It was kind of deafening in the finish circuits, right through the start/finish. It was like wow, this is awesome. There’s always a great crowd here, really supportive of the race. I love racing here, I love the South and it’s a great course.”
After four years in Greenville and the expiration of its commitment to hold its pro championships there, USA Cycling announced after the race that the event would return to the city in 2010.
“The support from the city and community of Greenville has been truly exceptional for the USA Cycling Professional Championships for four years. And we are truly excited to announce our return to Greenville for 2010,” added Steve Johnson, CEO of USA Cycling, Inc. The announcement about the Championships returning to Greenville was made after the race by USA Cycling in partnership with Medalist Sports and The City of Greenville.
USA Cycling US Professional Championships Road Race Results:
1 HINCAPIE George Team Columbia-High Road 4:33:36
2 BAJADALI Andrew Kelly Benefit Strategies 4:33:37
3 LOUDER Jeff BMC Racing Team 4:33:39
4 BOOKWALTER Brent BMC Racing Team 4:33:43
5 BUSCHE Matthew Kelly Benefit Strategies 4:33:43
6 MCCARTY Jonathan OUCH Presented By Maxxis 4:33:49
7 JONES Chris Team Type 1 4:33:49
8 ZAJICEK Phil Fly V Australia 4:33:59
9 BOWMAN Daniel Kelly Benefit Strategies 4:34:46
10 MILNE Shawn Team Type 1 4:34:55
11 SHIRLEY Neil Kelly Benefit Strategies 4:35:01
12 CREED Mike Team Type 1 4:35:02
13 DONALD Jason Garmin-Slipstream 4:35:03
14 JENKINS Max Glud & Marstrand Horsens 4:35:04
15 SWINDLEHURST T Burke Bissell Pro Cycling 4:35:05
16 WHITE Bradley OUCH Presented By Maxxis 4:35:06
17 PATE Danny Garmin-Slipstream 4:35:45
18 McCARTNY Jason Saxo Bank 4:35:45
19 RYTLEWSKI Jacob (Jake) Kenda Pro Cycling p/b Spinergy 4:40:30
20 GUPTILL Andrew Colavita-Sutter Homes p/b Cooking Light 4:40:30
21 JACQUES-MAYNES Benjamin Bissell Pro Cycling 4:40:31
22 JOHNSON Timothy OUCH Presented By Maxxis 4:40:31
23 CRUZ Antonio BMC Racing Team 4:40:32
24 CANDELARIO Alexander Kelly Benefit Strategies 4:40:33
25 MURPHY John OUCH Presented By Maxxis 4:40:33
26 DUGGAN Timmy Garmin-Slipstream 4:40:33
27 LEWIS Craig Team Columbia-High Road 4:40:34
28 PETERSON Tom Garmin-Slipstream 4:40:34
29 KING Ted Cervelo Test Team 4:41:55
30 REIJNEN Kiel Jelly Belly Cycling Team 4:41:55
31 TALANSKY Andrew Amore e Vita - Life Time Fitness 4:41:56
32 GARCIA Jonathan BMC Racing Team 4:41:56
33 LANDIS Floyd OUCH Presented By Maxxis 4:41:57
34 JACQUES-MAYNES Andy Bissell Pro Cycling 5:10:58
35 KEM Omer Bissell Pro Cycling 5:10:58
36 SCHMITT Morgan Bissell Pro Cycling 5:10:58
37 KILUN Roman OUCH Presented By Maxxis 5:10:58
38 VAILLANCOURT Daniel Colavita-Sutter Homes p/b Cooking Light 5:10:58
39 WREN Tyler Colavita-Sutter Homes p/b Cooking Light 5:10:58
40 MARZOT Charles Team Mountain Khakis 5:10:58
41 DUGAN William Team Type 1 5:10:58
42 DOMINGUEZ Ivan Rock Racing 5:10:58
43 CAMUT James Land Rover - ORBEA 5:10:58