RMCC conquer inaugural road bike series
Darren Anderson ruled the road while Robin Clegg slayed the time trial as the Rundle Mountain Cycling Club dominated its inaugural home stage race on Saturday and Sunday (July 14-15).
The win moves the local club into first place in provincial cycling club standings as Anderson, Clegg, Anthony Killick and Fraser Mills-Connery all won races over the weekend.
“We had great results for our club. We’re now ahead of bigger clubs from Calgary and Edmonton such as Speed Theory, Bow Cycle and Juventus,” said race organizer Shane Munro.
Clegg and Anderson finished one-two in the Category 1 overall standings, as both managed to stay in the top five for each event. Clegg was first in the time trial, second in the crit and third in the road race. He finished the 4.25 kilometre time trial route along the roller ski track at the Nordic Centre in 5:47.8.
Happy with his effort, he admitted he needs more work in the criterium, where he finished second.
“I’m a chicken when it comes to the crit. I’m not as confident going into the corners and still learning out there,” Clegg said.
Going into the downtown race, he was trying to help teammate Sean Crooks get the win. That meant he was in charge of bringing the pain. But after Crooks crashed on the last lap, he had to jump up in the pack.
“I wanted to make people suffer,” Clegg said. “We had a lead out for Sean, but he crashed and I was up next. I didn’t have quite enough and jumped way too early.”
On the final lap, Anderson, Clegg and Chris Taylor worked together, however, Jesse James Collins of Synergy Racing took the win.
The crit races were the most spectator-friendly of the events, with much of the downtown area closed off. Anthony Killick won the Cat 3 race with a brilliant charge at the end, allowing him to move up to Cat 1 for his next event.
“I had an incredible lead out and went hard on the sprint,” Killick said. “It was nice to be the third wheel.”
He went for a break early and said he was lucky to have enough in the tank, working with Tyson Smith, who finished third.
Brittany Webster was the top local racer in the women’s race, finishing third.
“I felt great. I thought I could hold on at the end, but the girl (winner) slipped by at the end.”
Fraser Mills-Connery won the Cat 4 crit race, while Bicycle Café’s Brent Rosvold was second in the Cat 5 race.
“I was super excited. The course was technical, but the field was strong. We really had to work together as a team.”
After the crit races, Anderson proved to be the strongest in the 131 km road race on Three Sisters Drive with a time of 3:02:52.
Munro said the event should certainly return next year with less problems. The crit finish line had to be moved after several spectacular crashes in the early races. None of the crashes resulted in serious injury.
“There were two pileups at the finish on the corner of the Cat 5 race. After the second crash, we talked to the Alberta Bicycle Association president. It started to rain and conditions were deteriorating, so the cornering wouldn’t get better. For public safety, we decided to move the finish.”
Traffic problems caused headaches downtown, but for the most part the event ran smoothly.
“The event itself went great. We had good feedback from the Downtown Business Association,” Munro said.
There was a positive economic impact resulting from the event and Murno said some businesses saw more traffic, some saw less.
“Some businesses won’t do as well, some will do better. We did a survey of the participants and about 40 per cent stayed in Canmore and spent an average of $1,000. That made $50,000 for the town and that could come up next year,” Munro said.
The RMCC will re-examine the event and hope to expand it for next year.
“We’d love to build a longer time trial, but the core events will be back for sure,” Munro said. “We’ll work more with the DBA next year. We want to keep everyone happy.”
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