John Eustice was looking for a track racing spectacle in Harlem when he changed the format of the 38th Harlem Skyscraper Classic. He got it Sunday when German Leif Lapater (Transporation Alternatives-Rockstar) topped U.S. Olympian Bobby Lea (Pure Energy) and Anibal Borrajo (Jamis-Sutter Home) in the two event omnium at Marcus Garvey Park in New York City.
“The racing fascinated the crowd,” said Eustice. “It was fast, dynamic and thrilling. A success.”
Lampater, second in Harlem in 2010 and a multiple-time national championship and World Cup track winner, took the omnium win after topping the opening points race and finishing seventh in the elimination. Lampater and teammate Benjamin Edmüller fought at the front of the 30-lap points race with Borrajo and his teammate Demis Aleman.
“Argentina versus Germany is a dream scenario for any promoter of any sport,” said Eustice. “The match lived up to expectations with a heated duel that pushed the limits.”
Borrajo took out the final sprint for 25 points, but Lampater and Edmüller scored a total of 50 points, 30 of them belonging to the former, who led the omnium at the halfway mark.
“I really liked the course,” Lampater said. “The audience was great this year, the weather was very good. I had enough motivation to make it a German race again.”
After an intermission to determine the fastest junior rider in New York City, U.S. based Australian Doug Repacholi turned the race from German to Aussie when he attacked 25 minutes into the elimination. Repacholi snuck away solo with a big enough gap to ham it up for the crowd and took top points in the second and final event of the omnium. His win netted Repacholi 35 points, good for fourth in the final standings.
Lampater tacked 14 points onto his 30 to take the overall lead at 44 points.
Lea faced off with Gabriel Acaba (CRCA-L-Raphael.com) for second and a shot at the final podium. When Lea, who is ramping up for a run at the 2012 London Olympics in the Omnium, took out a tactical sprint, he earned enough points, 40, to vault into second on the day. Borrajo finished third with 36 points.