Posted by Editoress on 07/16/03
Blizzard Bike Club Fort St. John, BC
Courtesy Pat Ferris
Robert Martens is now the five-time club road champion after a thrilling sprint finish win from six other riders, Sunday. Robert edged out Mike Hientzman who was second and Joseph Gladysz who grabbed third.
Stephen Ferris was 4th and Richard Howes 5th. Their group time was 1:31:38 hours for the Cecil Lake 57 km. circuit.
Twenty-four riders came out for the race, which is the record tying number. Nineteen riders did the 57 km distance and 5 did the 29 km.
All the riders started together. Trevor McDonell and Joseph Gladysz did an immediate attack after the 'neutral' was over, which split the bunch of riders. Robert Martens, Pat & Stephen Ferris, Vaughn Hildebrand, Trevor McDonell, Richard Howes, Mike Heintzman and Joseph Gladysz pulled away. The group stormed along and shed Vaughn Hildebrand and Trevor McDonell at the 35 km. mark.
A series of short breaks and attacks failed to break up the lead group so it all came down to a sprint. Richard Howes lead it out with the other riders taking his draft in the cross wind.
Robert Martens pulled through for another convincing win with Mike Hientzman and Joseph Gladysz close behind. Stephen Ferris was 4th, Richard Howes in 5th and Pat Ferris 6th, coming in 20 seconds later, dropped in the final sprint. Their time was 1:31:38.
Vaughn Hildebrand was 7th at 1:33:53, Gilbert Bilodeau 1:38:21, Tammy Howes outsprinted 'Ironman' Ed Fornelli for 9th at 1:38:26, David Ferris 11th 1:41:22, Ken Nix 1:41:24, Gary Hilderman 1:41:27, Sam Keats 1:45:06, Wim Kok 1:45:12, Trevor McDonell 1:45:27 after some late race tire problems, Ross Garbutt 1:47:14, Adam Currie 1:55:12 and Owen Giebelhaus 2:24:21 after a series of mechanical troubles.
Tessa Bilodeau won the 29 km. race with 47:42 minutes. Dave McKnight had 48:40 for second place in his first road race. Two-time Ironman Lisa Verbisky was 3rd at 52:12, Erin Drummond 52:12 and Jolea Bilodeau at 1:12:31 hours.
-Thursday night Baldonnel time trial at 7 pm.
-Sunday Hudson's Hope road race at 10:00 am. Meet at the Hudson's Hope 'Welcome' entrance sign at 10:00 am for this 60 km. race. A 30 km distance will also be available.
Mike Hientzman on the Blizzard Bike Club's Thursday nighttime trial with a time of 24:38 minutes for 16 km. Vaughn Hildebrand was second at 24:53 and Pat Ferris third with 25:19. Richard Howes was 4th at 25:24 and Andrew Kovacs 5th at 25:54.
Other times were Trevor McDonell was 6th at 26:08, David Ferris 26:44, Rod Lewis 26:45, Tessa Bilodeau 27:33 and Gilbert Bilodeau 27:55 to round out the top ten times.
Joseph Gladysz was 11th at 27:58, Wim Kok 28:30, Ken Nix 28:40, Tammy Howes 28:44, Gord Harris 29:43, Richard Wood 28:56, Adam Currie 30:07, Ross Garbutt 30:34, Owen Giebelhaus 30:54, Sam Keats 31:53, Erin Drummond 32:49, Lucie Janosek 35:09, Jolea Bilodeau 37:30, Val Lewis 40:16 and Heather Haugen did 42:45 for her first 16 km.
Adam Bilodeau was first in the 8 km with 15:39. Lois 'Roadie' Harris was second at 16:45 and Danielle Howes third with 19:24.
The 18th Club Championship Road Race will be taking place at Cecil Lake, this Sunday. Robert Martens will be trying for a record 5th win.
Robert first won in 1999 and has won every year since. Pat Ferris is the only local past winner with three wins.
In the very first event, back in 1985, Ken Chin handily out-sprinted a pair of consistent winners to take the final bicycle race of the season. He won the Blizzard Bicycle Clubs' season finale by a mere one second over Pat Ferris and two seconds over Bill Scott to take the championship on Swanson/Airport double loop.
In 2002 Robert Martens proved to be the rose between two thorns as he held off the 'Ferris Boys' to win his 4th Blizzard Club Championship race. He had a championship time of 1:38:59 hours. Stephen Ferris was 34 seconds back in second place. Pat Ferris had 1:40:59 for third. Jay Morrison had 1:41:11 for 4th and David Ferris 1:42:37 for 5th. A record tying twenty-four riders came out.
This event has been won by lone breakaways ten times over the years. Sprint finishes decided seven titles.
The championship circuit is Cecil Lake for 4 laps of a 15 km out and back for 60 km. There will be a 2 lap, 30 km. distance also available.
Multi-Championship winner Robert Martens will again be the odds on favourite. Other strong riders such as Vaughn Hildebrand, Dave Damery, Trevor McDonell, Stephen Ferris and Mike Hientzman and a host of others will try to be the spoilers to scoop that favourite of club trophies.
Race time will be at 10:00 am.
The Blizzard Club also has triathletes in Prince George this weekend for the Prince George Triathlon.
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