Photo by Luke Seemann

Murphy survives wet title chase

Aug 16
2009
Filed in: Race reports, Downers Grove,


Comments (10)

John Murphy (Team OUCH) is your new national criterium champion after a wet, storm-delayed race in Downers Grove that will go down as one of the most thrilling and heartbreaking in American cycling history.

The race started an hour late after a serious thunderstorm whipped through shortly after the big-wheel race. The pavement stayed wet for the duration and caused no shortage of mayhem, particularly in the final laps. Fewer than 30 riders remained with two to go, dominated as usual by a large Kelly Benefit Strategies train, followed by a well-organized Team OUCH. Defending champion Rahsaan Bahati (Rock Racing) was completely isolated, as was favorite Tony Cruz (BMC), who rode the entire race without teammates. With one to go, the race was reduced to two small groups. Kelly had four and Team OUCH had two in the lead group of six. A mish-mosh of teams composed the 10-strong chasing group a few seconds back. After the second group regained contact, Tasmanian Karl Menzies (Team OUCH) was putting together a leadout for Murphy when he wiped out into Turn 5, with Murphy barely dodging the wreckage. Bahati then surged out of Turn 7 and led into fateful Turn 8 with victory in his grasp. At the apex of the turn, however, his wheels went out from under him and he slid into the hay in a devastating conclusion to a hard-fought race. Sitting on Bahati's wheel, Alex Candelario (Kelly Benefit Strategies) was forced to clip out. That opened the door for Ben Kersten (Fly V Australia) and Murphy to fly up the 150-meter homestretch, both raising their arms in victory: Kersten for the win, Murphy for the stars-and-stripes jersey. (Murphy may have been able to win, but he celebrated prematurely while Kersten threw for the line.) Cruz, a national champion here in 1999, finished 3rd, 2nd American, and was visibly disappointed as he took his latest Downers Grove podium. Jake Keough (Kelly Benefit Strategies) and Soldier Field star Adam Myerson (Mountain Khakis) rounded out the podium in 4th and 5th. Bahati lay motionless for several worrisome moments but eventually remounted his bike and, bloodied and in tears, crossed the line to large applause. He would place 22nd. Full men's USPRO results. Full wrap-up to come. More photos here, and Peloton-Pix has a good photo race summary.

Comments

1.

Aug 16
2009

8:34 pm

pat mcnally

That photo is second only to Ed White’s photo of Ben LaForce doing Swan Lake on concrete.

2.

Aug 16
2009

8:40 pm

Yuppie

Great wrap-up!  Also the first, Scoop.

3.

Aug 16
2009

8:57 pm

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) (ABD)

That may be the photo of the weekend. 

And I thought I had a good look at it.  I’m doing the call from inside the fence walking towards Bahati. 

Brilliant stake-out Luke. Nicely done!

4.

Aug 16
2009

9:02 pm

Luke Seemann's avatar

Luke Seemann (XXX Racing-AthletiCo)

Thanks, all.

CyclingNews has a brief, but still nothing up at VeloNews. SUCK IT, Boulder!

5.

Aug 16
2009

10:57 pm

Luke Seemann's avatar

Luke Seemann (XXX Racing-AthletiCo)

Full VeloNews report is up now. Excellent, thorough work as always from Mark Zalewski.

6.

Aug 17
2009

10:58 am

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Hello,

...any information about Tour of Oak Brook…is it on Aug. 22…or Sep. 12…or…
...flayer…?

Thank you

7.

Aug 17
2009

11:15 am

Luke Seemann's avatar

Luke Seemann (XXX Racing-AthletiCo)

As I posted three weeks ago and as the ICA has posted, it’s not official yet and thus there is no flier, but permits are being sought for Sept. 12.

8.

Aug 17
2009

11:28 am

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Thx…somebody approached me at DG telling me that race is on Aug. 22…
..I will be looking at CBR for right information….
..thank you

9.

Aug 17
2009

11:45 am

Luke Seemann's avatar

Luke Seemann (XXX Racing-AthletiCo)

Obviously that person was trying to trick you so that you would peak too soon.

10.

Aug 17
2009

11:58 am

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

thx

 

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