04 | JAN
Alpharetta, GA (April 23, 2006) - The Kodakgallery.com/Sierra
Nevada Pro Cycling Team turned out another solid performance in today's
final stage of the Ford Tour de Georgia, as Ben Jacques-Maynes took his
third sixth-place finish of the race, young gun Jesse Anthony cracked the
top 10, and Scott Zwizanski rode in the breakaway for most of the day.
Just 12 miles into the 118-mile stage, Zwizanski found himself in a group of fifteen riders, but they didn't get away from the field without a fight.
"The first fifteen minutes of the break were super hard," he recalled, "I was cross-eyed for a while there, but then things settled down."
Comparing today's stage to his similar breakaway in the last stage of the Amgen Tour of California, Zwizanski added, "This was much harder. At California, the field just let us roll out there pretty easily. This time, we really had to work for it."
He and most other members of the breakaway were caught by the field not long after beginning the six 3.5-mile finishing circuits in Alpharetta, although Will Frischkorn (TIAA-CREF) and Jeff Louder (Health Net p.b. Maxxis) held out until the penultimate lap.
As bunch entered the final mile and the sprinters' teams massed near head of the field, Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada's Jesse Anthony took a flyer off the front but was quickly reabsorbed.
"I was sick yesterday for Brasstown Bald, and I felt pretty bad at the start today, but my legs came around. I went for it at the end; it was totally a suicide move but I thought that if I confused enough people, maybe I could pull it off."
In a field sprint finish won by J.J. Haedo (Toyota-United), Anthony impressively hung on for 10th, as Jacques-Maynes finished 6th again.
"I can't seem to crack the top five, but then again I'm not a field sprinter. At least I'm getting some UCI and NRC points," he noted.
Over the course of the six-day race, Anthony was Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada's revelation, placing four times in the top 20 and earning the GE Best Young Rider jersey after the first two stages.
"I showed myself how I can ride," he said. "I've been training hard all year and I'll try to keep it up for the rest of the season. I'm sure I'll look back and want to change a few things here and there, but overall it was an awesome Ford Tour de Georgia for me."
"We fought the good fight," said Racing Manager Jonas Carney of the team's overall performance. "Ben's three sixth places in bunch sprints were great, and Jesse impressed me tremendously for his first major international pro stage race. We'll be back, and next race we'll be much better."
The team's best overall finish was Jacques-Maynes in 30th, 11'18" behind race winner Floyd Landis (Phonak). Anthony ended up 40th at 14'16", followed by Dominique Perras in 68th and Scott Zwizanski in 91st. Anthony finished 9th in the Best Young Rider standings.
Next up for Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada is another race in Georgia, the Athens Twilight on April 29.