Winston-Salem, NC (August 5, 2007) The only thing hotter than National Racing Calendar criterium racing is an August heat wave in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. And that is exactly what riders faced as they took the line for the 3:30pm start of the Hanes Park Classic on Sunday.
Unlike the previous night’s racing in Charlotte, Sunday’s field stayed close together. None of the countless breakaway efforts rewarded riders with any meaningful distance from the field. The high pace and tight racing took its toll as the field suffered numerous crashes including one that took down Presbyterian Hospital Invitational victor, Frank Pipp. In short, the racing was tense.
Through out the race, the Kodak Gallery Pro Cycling Team, Presented by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. was a key animator. The Kodak Gallery Team rode strongly at the front and chased back many breakaway efforts as they worked to position sprinting star, Dominique Rollin for the finale.
As the race drew to a close, the Kodak Gallery, Healthnet and Toyota United teams all fought for control at the front of the field. Inside of the final kilometer it was a free-for-all setting the stage for an exciting group sprint up the long, slightly up-hill finishing stretch. Toyota-United’s Ivan Dominguez had the best positioning coming out of the final corner, powered to the line and took the win. Rollin took 4th in a finish so close that officials and team directors had to review the instant replay tape to confirm the final outcome.
Dominique battles for the line at Winston-Salem.
Photo:: Bob Hebert