Posted by Editoress on 02/27/08
The sixth and final stage of the first version of the Trans Mexicana mountain bike race was full of excitement and adrenaline as the competitors raced hard towards the beaches of Huatuluco Mexico. Early on in the 65 km stage, Lupillo Cruz, Travis Macey and Cory Wallace broke away and started attacking each other each vying for the glory of a win on the final stage. 30 km into the stage there was a 12 km descent, which Wallace knew was his best chance of the day to break away from the other two riders and attempt a solo win. After bouncing off the tail end of a pickup and crashing hard near the bottom, Wallace was soon joined again by Lupillo and Travis with only 23 km of rolling terrain before them to the finish. In another last ditch effort to overtake Lupillo's 5:03 lead in the GC, Wallace tried a solo breakaway with 18 km to go and came across the line in 2 hours 47 minutes. The clock started to tick down and with just 22 seconds to spare in his GC lead, Cruz came across the line 4 minutes 41 seconds behind Wallace, with Macey right on his tail. Also riding well was Alexey Sokolov of the Ukraine who would come in fourth on the day, enough to claim fourth overall in the GC, a very solid feat after crashing hard on the second stage. With the sun pounding down and the ocean just 50 meters away, the riders wasted no time cooling themselves off with much deserved swims as they rode across the finish line one by one.
In the Masters category, Doug Hammell had over a one hr GC lead on second place Jose Maria going into the final stage, and he would preserve that lead, although Jose Maria would come in 1 minute 49 seconds ahead of Hammell on the day.
At the conclusion of the race the competitors were treated to a Mexican feast, as they watched race videos and photos from the last six days of competition. Afterwards the awards took place with Lupillo claiming the $2000 USD first prize along with a $4000 BMW mountain bike and $500 in camping equipment. Wallace would claim the second place prize of $1850 with Macey in third (42:57 back) taking home $1250 in prizes. The lone woman competitor, Tami Tamshiro Arias of Mexico City, took home $1000 cash and is excited about the prospect of facing a larger womens field in next year's event.
Original Extreme Experience did an amazing job at putting on this inaugural event and are already planning on making next year bigger and better, with a full 750 km, 7 day ride from coast to coast. Anyone interested in an epic mtb race across the jungles, desserts and beaches of Mexico should look into this event, as it is said to match races such as La Ruta de Conquistadors in both professionalism and adventure - and to top it off, the riders are served with fine Mexican cuisine throughout the race.
|1. Cory Wallace (Sprim Nutrition/ Bicisport/ Freewheel Jasper)||2:47:14|
|2. Lupillo Cruz (Scott Bikes)||at 4:41|
|3. Travis Macey (Merrell/ Zanfel Adventure)||4:41|
|4. Alexey Sokolov (Ukraine)||32:16|
|5. David Hachshaw (Trinidad & Tobago)||1:19|
|1. Jose Maria (Mexico City)||3:37:25|
|2. Doug Hammell (Jasper, Alberta)||1:47 back|
|3. Homero Lopez (Vera Cruz Mexico)||4:27|
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