04 | JAN
leading Shawn Milne (Navigators) and Rahsaan Bahati (TIAA-CREF)
with 2 laps to go
Charlotte, NC (August 5, 2006) - Racing for one
of the season's largest purses, Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada's Jackson
Stewart nearly pulled off his second major victory of 2006, finishing second
in tonight's Bank of America Invitational in Charlotte.
Stewart, winner at the Commerce Bank Lancaster Classic on June 4, bridged
up to Rahsaan Bahati (TIAA-CREF) near the halfway point of the 50-mile criterium.
With around 15 laps of the 1.2 mile course remaining, Shawn Milne (Navigators
Insurance) came across and break began to increase its lead, although the
field remained within striking distance.
But over the last eight laps, rain and crashes slowed the pack's chase and
after Bahati - likely the best sprinter in the break - was dropped, Stewart
and Milne were left to battle for the winner's $25,000 payday.
"Shawn gapped me coming out of a turn on the last lap and he held it all
the way to the line. I was out there a long time in the break and I just
didn't have much left, and he was really strong," Stewart said.
With only around 25 riders left in the main field, Juan Jose Haedo (Toyota-United)
took the sprint for third, nearly catching Stewart on the finish line.
In the first half of the race, Stewart, Ben Jaques-Maynes and Jesse Anthony
represented Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada in the early breakaways, leading
Racing Manager Jonas Carney to say, "We were the most aggressive team of
the day. We had someone off the front pretty much the entire race."
Next weekend brings another $100,000 prize list at the Alexian Brothers
Tour of Elk Grove in Illinois, where Kodakgallery.com/Sierra Nevada will
bring Ben Jacques-Maynes, Jackson Stewart, Pete Lopinto, Martin Gilbert
and Dan Schmatz.
Starting on Monday, Dominique Perras, Mike Dietrich, Jesse Anthony, Jason
Allen, David Robinson and Scott Zwizanski will be racing at the Larry H.
Miller Tour of Utah.