Monterey, CA (April 15, 2007) Racing before a sponsor packed crowd, Mark Walters of The Kodak Gallery Pro Cycling Team, presented by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. scored his best finish of the year, narrowly missing a win in the SRAM Road Race at the Sea Otter Classic. Teammates Jesse Anthony and Dan Timmerman rode to fifth and sixth places respectively.
On the second lap of the road course in Fort Ord, Walters and five riders from other teams escaped from the pack to make what would prove to be the day’s defining break. Over the rolling course, the breakaway group drove their advantage to more than three minutes before Walters’ Kodak Gallery teammates launched a determined effort to bridge to the breakaway to provide support to Walters for the race’s final miles.
The bridge effort, led by Jesse Anthony, Dan Timmerman and Ben Raby got as close as 1:24 to the breakaway, but ran out of road before they could close the entire distance. Isolated without teammates in the breakaway, Walters took the initiative to define the race as he ratcheted up the pace on the final 2-kilometer climb to the finish line. JellyBelly rider and recent winner of the 2007 Redlands Classic, Andrew Bajadali was the only rider to match the pace. In the final meters though, Bajadali’s kick created a bike-length gap that proved the distance between first and Walters’ second place.
Of the effort, Team Operations Director, Kurt Stockton said, “We are very excited to see Mark’s form coming on. Mark looked very comfortable today and rode a very smart race. We look forward to great things from Mark in the season ahead.”