Kristin Armstrong wins Exeter TT

Kristin Armstrong (Cervelo Lifeforce) put the hurt on a world-class field of pro women Saturday, winning the 40km Yokohl Ranch Exeter Time Trial, with over four minutes separating her from second place Aussie, Alex Rhodes (Team High Road), and third place Canadian, Felicia Gomez (Aaron’s). Canadian national time trial champion Anne Samplonius (Cheerwine) came in fourth, followed by US National Team member, Katharine Carroll (Aaron’s).

Idaho’s world champ takes the year’s second NRC event

By Kathie Reid

Kristin Armstrong at the start of the Sequoia Classic's Exeter time trial

Kristin Armstrong at the start of the Sequoia Classic’s Exeter time trial

Photo: Kathie Reid

Kristin Armstrong (Cervelo Lifeforce) put the hurt on a world-class field of pro women Saturday, winning the 40km Yokohl Ranch Exeter Time Trial, with over four minutes separating her from second place Aussie, Alex Rhodes (Team High Road), and third place Canadian, Felicia Gomez (Aaron’s). Canadian national time trial champion Anne Samplonius (Cheerwine) came in fourth, followed by US National Team member, Katharine Carroll (Aaron’s).

With her sights set on Beijing, Armstrong is leaving Monday to race in Europe with her Swiss-based team, and didn’t decide to come to the Sequoia Classic opener until just a few days ago.

“I just kinda decided that it’s gonna be a really good hard effort,” she said prior to the race. “I couldn’t believe it … to have 67 women out here in America, it’s pretty phenomenal for a time trial. You don’t even get that at national championships.”

And she wasn’t disappointed. “You have hills, you have longer, steeper, shorter, curvy roads,” she said at the finish. “It was a great time trial. There’s not a lot of opportunity to time trial this distance in America, or in the world, and that’s one of the reasons I came out here.”

World-class competition on a tough course

Her competition agreed and also appreciated the depth of talent in the field. Gomez, who is aiming for Beijing, too, hoping to make the Canadian Olympic team, felt the day was good testing ground.

The 2008 Exeter Time Trial podium. Left to right: Felicia Gomez, Kristen Armstrong, Alex Rhodes.

The 2008 Exeter Time Trial podium. Left to right: Felicia Gomez, Kristen Armstrong, Alex Rhodes.

Photo: Kathie Reid

“It was hard. It’s a really hard course … It’s like world class competition here,” she said, “and to get beat by the world champion, and a really strong European rider, but to kinda be the top in North America, I’m pretty happy.”

The course, which includes Rocky Hill, a 5km climb at the beginning, suited Gomez.

“A lot of times, time trials are really short,” she said, “so it’s not gonna fit a 50-kilo person when you’ve got a 10-minute totally flat time trial. So 40k, lots of climbing, and it’s more about fitness. I wanted to do well here because it’s my kind of TT course. Give it to me when it’s long and it’s hard, not flat and short and windy.”

And the weather held out for most of the racers. With a tailwind on the way out, and a headwind coming home, the temperatures held in the low- to mid-50s, and rain showers that caught some of the riders at the turn-around were quick and light.

While Samplonius was pleased with making the podium, she didn’t feel she was on her game today. “This was my first race of the season,” she said. “This was a bit of a shock to the system. I just got on my TT bike, like, two hours before the start, trying to get my position set up, so that didn’t really help either … that said, the best people won. The best people finished ahead of me.”

While most of the competitors praised the depth of the field present, Samplonius was disappointed that some teams were absent. “I think there’s a couple teams missing that normally should be here, like Colavita and Webcor. It’s a little disappointing … considering that this is a women’s NRC event, and they’re really trying to promote the women. I think we should step up to the plate also and support the race.”

While they had intended on sending at least three riders, due to injuries, Webcor sent just one, newcomer Janel Holcomb. Christine Thorburn (Webcor) had planned on competing, but decided less than a week before that she should sit the race out, due to three broken ribs sustained in the Tour of the Geelong. In an e-mail last week, she wrote, “I think I should not race Sequoia, although I wanted to support the race given they are being so supportive of women.”

Sunday the Sequoia Cycling Classic will conclude with the 40-mile Visalia Criterium in nearby downtown Visalia.

Race Notes
Kristy Gough (Third Pillar) was listed as DNS, and should have taken the line at 1:30:30. She was killed, along with another Bay Area rider, Matt Peterson (Roaring Mouse Cycles), in a tragic accident last Sunday. The race staff kept her on the start list and announcer Dave Towle announced her at the line for a moment of silence while a friend held her number.

While the men’s race was not NRC, a number of powerful domestic teams were represented, including Bissell, Kelly Benefits Strategies, California Giant Berry Farms, Rock Racing,, and Rock Racing. Had Armstrong competed in their field, she would have placed 26th, as she beat the time of more than half the men’s field. Bissell’s Ben Jacques-Maynes won, followed by Health Net’s Rory Sutherland and Kelly’s Jonathan Mumford.

Photo Gallery


Sequoia Classic

Exeter Time Trial


1. Kristin Armstrong, Cervelo-Lifeforce Pro Cycling Team, 40km in 1:01:31.89

2. Rhodes Alex, Team High Road, 1:05:48.96

3. Felicia Gomez, Aaron’s Pro Cycling Team, 1:06:24.08

4. Anne Samplonius, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:06:41.80

5. Katharine Carroll, Aaron’s Pro Cycling Team, 1:07:13.07

6. Leigh Hobson, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:07:13.77

7. Mara Abbott, Team High Road, 1:07:43.26

8. Molly Van Houweling, Metromint Cycling, 1:08:07.39

9. Kristin Sanders, Aaron’s Pro Cycling Team, 1:08:24.58

10. Carmen McNellis, Aaron’s Pro Cycling Team, 1:08:26.18

11. Emily Zell, Proman Racing, 1:08:34.03

12. Janel Holcomb, Webcor Builders, 1:08:49.11

13. Lauren Franges, Team Tibco, 1:09:18.58

14. Martina Patella, Valueact Capital Cycling Team, 1:09:34.00

15. Pat Ross, Touchstone Climbing, 1:09:41.94

16. Anke Wichmann, Team High Road, 1:10:24.55

17. Stacy Marple, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:10:26.05

18. Nicole Evans, Valueact Capital Cycling Team, 1:10:28.22

19. Megan Hottman, DFT-QA3, 1:10:39.55

20. Kelly McDonald, Touchstone Climbing, 1:10:45.31

21. Laura Van Gilder, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:10:48.57

22. Kelly Benjamin, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:11:09.26

23. Alison Littlefield, Contender Bicycles, 1:11:21.83

24. Olivia Dillon, Touchstone Climbing, 1:11:56.87

25. Rushlee Buchanan, Team Tibco, 1:11:57.03

26. Jane Despas, Vanderkitten, 1:12:01.33

27. Amber Rais, Team Tibco, 1:12:04.39

28. Shannon Koch, Metro Volkswagen Cycling Team, 1:12:09.21

29. Heather Sborz, Vanderkitten Racing, 1:12:16.80

30. Jennifer Reither, Southbay Wheelmen, 1:12:23.62

31. Helen Kelly, Team Tibco, 1:12:29.97

32. Allyson Brandt, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:12:39.64

33. Morgan Kapp, Southbay Wheelmen, 1:12:43.55

34. Kate Ligler, Proman Racing, 1:12:51.19

35. Cara Gillis, Organicathlete’s Team Vegan, 1:13:18.21

36. Abby Lyn Cooper, Proman Racing, 1:13:34.00

37. Clare Vlahopoulos, America’s Dairyland, 1:13:43.05

38. Maria Monica, McGuire Cycling Team, 1:13:47.00

39. Rachel Heal, Team Tibco, 1:13:49.49

40. Holly Borowski, Touchstone-Us Armed Forces, 1:13:52.36

41. Tracy Kubas, Bicycle John’s, 1:14:02.30

42. Jerika Hutchinson, Team Tibco, 1:14:07.53

43. Flavia Oliveira, Vanderkitten Racing, 1:14:32.56

44. Sue Palmer-Komar, Team Advil-Chapstick, 1:14:34.12

45. Cari Higgins, America’s Dairyland, 1:14:38.61

46. Chellie Terry, Fitzgerald’s Bicycles, 1:14:43.77

47. Betina Hold, Proman Racing, 1:14:48.27

48. Elizabeth Galenti, 1:14:58.43

49. Sarah Bamberger, Cheerwine Cycling, 1:15:51.65

50. Kate Ross, America’s Dairyland, 1:17:34.74

51. Yukie Nakamura, Team Kenda Tire, 1:17:47.00

52. Amy McGuire, Team Kenda Tire, 1:17:53.15

53. Jennifer Wilson, Southbay Wheelmen, 1:18:31.93

54. Elis Bradshaw, Metromint Cycling On Marin Bikes, 1:19:56.71

DNF Marisa Asplund-Owens Cheerwine Cycling Dnf

DNF Christina Ruiter, Valueact Capital Cycling Team Dnf

DNS Sandra Kolb, Na Dns

DNS Giana Roberge, Proman Racing

DNS Kelli Jones, Paramount Racing

DNS Meredith Miller, Aaron’s Pro Women’s Cycling Team

DNS Julia Lafranchise, Leader Bikes-Big City

DNS Emilia Fahlin, Team High Road

DNS Victoria Bastide, Team Tibco

DNS Kristy Gough, Third Pillar

DNS Kim Anderson, Team High Road


1. Ben Jacques-Maynes, Bissell Pro Cycling, 56:25.68

2. Rory Sutherland, Health Net-Maxxis, 57:14.80

3. Jonathan Mumford, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 57:41.15

4. Heath Blackgrove, Toyota United Pro Cycling Team, 57:43.46

5. Karl Menzies, Health Net-Maxxis, 57:46.52

6. Luis Amaran Romero, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 57:48.21

7. Scott Zwizanski, Bissell Pro Cycling Team, 57:57.86

8. Michael Grabinger, Successful, 58:10.09

9. Mike Olheiser, Memphis Motor Werks-Carve, 58:14.50

10. Eric Wohlberg, Symmetrics, 58:20.52

11. Mark Santurbane, California Giant Berry Farms, 58:38.33

12. Justin Spinelli, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 58:38.96

13. Thurlow Rogers, Amgen Giant Masters, 58:48.96

14. Bradley White, Successful, 58:54.53

15. Curtis Gunn, Successful, 59:03.68

16. Phillip Gaimon, Fiordifrutta, 59:41.39

17. Andy Jacques-Maynes, California Giant Berry Farms, 59:45.89

18. Aaron Olson, Bissell Pro Cycling Team, 59:48.30

19. Brian Jensen, Successful, 59:51.96

20. Andrew Randell, Symmetrics Cycling, 1:00:12.11

21. Joao Correia, Bissell Pro Cycling Team, 1:00:56.59

22. Matt Seagrave, Kahala La Grange, 1:01:00.99

23. Michael Hutchinson, Morgan Stanley-Specialized-24 Hr Fitness, 1:01:11.05

24. Danie lBowman, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 1:01:13.55

25. Osvaldo Olmos, California Giant Berry Farms, 1:01:25.71

26. Tyler Dibble, 1:01:32.23

27. Max Jenkins, California Giant Berry Farms, 1:01:36.56

28. Jonathan Sundt, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 1:01:40.37

29. Alejandro Borrajo, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:01:49.27

30. Anibal Borrajo, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:01:55.46

31. Jesse Moore, California Giant Berry Farms, 1:02:12.60

32. Craig Upton, Navigators Insurance, 1:02:18.05

33. Adam Switters, Rock Racing, 1:02:27.99

34. Alessandro Bazzana, Successful, 1:02:39.96

35. Charles Dionne, Successful, 1:02:40.94

36. Keith Miller, California Giant Berry Farms, 1:02:44.14

37. Markus Weinberg, Kahala-La Grange, 1:02:45.36

38. Mark Shimahara, Team Clif Bar, 1:02:51.93

39. Kevin Klein, Rock Racing, 1:02:54.89

40. John Hunt, California Giant Berry Farms, 1:03:43.21

41. Andrew Guptill, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:03:43.46

42. Luca Damiani, Colavita-Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:03:55.80

43. Josh Horowitz, Lagrange, 1:04:14.96

44. Lucas Sebastian Haedo, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:0451.11

45. Alex Candelario, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 1:05:08.80

46. Vincent Owens, Sierra Pacific Racing, 1:05:10.71

47. Davide Frattini, Colavita Sutter Home-Cooking Light, 1:05:24.42

48. Jonathan Eropkin, Vos Racing, 1:05:27.64

49. Michael Hernandez, Vos Racing, 1:06:24.42

50. Nathan Rogut, Metro Volkswagen Cycling Team, 1:09:32.18

51. Andrew Bajadali, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast, 1:12:10.87

DNF Devon Vigus, California Giant Berry Farms

DNS Christian Valenzuela, Successful

DNS Ken Hanson, California Giant Berry Farms

DNS Cody O’Reilly, Successful

DNS Brian Buchholz, Kelly Benefit Strategies-Medifast