04 | JAN
(June 18, 2005) - Over 100 riders started today's final stage of the Tour
de Nez, only 33 finished, and Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada had 5 in the
But, as Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada Operations Manager Kurt Stockton commented,
"4th, 6th, 9th, 13th, and 14th places don't really reflect how well
our team rode today."
After placing two riders in a four-man chase group closing in on a two-man
break that had been off the front for most of the race, Kodak Gallery/Sierra
Nevada was in a good position in the closing laps.
With Glen Mitchell (Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada) chasing hard, accompanied
by Pete Lopinto (Kodak Gallery/Sierra Nevada), Kyle Gritters (Seasilver)
and Richard England (Advantage Benefits-Endeavour), the chasers' gap to
leaders Alex Candelario (Jelly Belly-PoolGel) and Erik Saunders (McGuire-Langdale)
was falling as the riders neared the finish.
But when the gap hit 15 seconds, Candelario and Saunders managed to stop
the bleeding and Candelario took the victory. Behind them, Lopinto was
unable to come around Gritters at the finish and settled for fourth in
front of England and Mitchell. Lopinto also placed 10th in the overall
"Today was another case of 'close, but no cigar.'", added Stockton.
"Glen was really driving it for Pete and we felt good about Pete's
chances if they had caught Candelario and Saunders."
After his gutsy race-long breakaway in yesterday's epic road race, Kodak
Gallery/Sierra Nevada's Tim Larkin finished in 9th today and 8th in the
overall standings. Ben Jacques-Maynes and Jackson Stewart took 13th and
14th in the stage.