Canadian Cyclist


January 26/03 7:54 am - Burnaby Velodrome Events, Tour Down Under: Final Stage

Posted by Editoress on 01/26/03

Burnaby Velodrome Upcoming Events
Courtesy Jeremy Storie

Fastest Man Alive to Compete at Burnaby under New Roof

Sam Wittingham, the Victoria BC resident and current Human Powered Vehicle record holder (130kmh), is one of several Canadian track athletes confirmed to be competing at the Burnaby Velodrome's Race Series #2, February 15-16, 2003. Wittingham, a 4 times Canadian national track medallist and 10 time BC provincial medallist, will be trading his record-breaking Varna Diablo II machine for a track bike and competing against other top Canadian and American riders. All the racing will take place under the brand new roof and recently upgraded facility.

Riders confirmed to date for the event include:

Mandy Poitras - Multiple World Cup winner, Goodwill Games medallist
Kenny Williams - Worlds Masters, US Nationals Medallist
Keith Bruneau - Worlds Masters, Canadian Nationals Medallist
Marsh Cooper - Canadian Nationals Jr. Road & Track Medallist
Laura Yoisten - 2002 Canadian Worlds Team Member
Cam McKinnon - Canadian Nationals Jr. Gold Medallist
Breanna Loster - Canadian Nationals Medallist

Kenny Williams of Seattle WA will be returning to the track after having won the Omnium title at the Burnaby Velodrome November Race Series #1 event.

Racing begins on Saturday morning with the flying 200m qualifying heats. Saturday and Sunday will see a number of mass start, sprint and timed events including points races, miss-n-out, scratch race, kilometer, keirin, Olympic sprint, and Madison.

There will also be a Learn to Race clinic run Wednesday and Friday evenings prior to the February 15-16 event. These clinics will include race entry fees for first time racers with their own category on the weekend. The weekend will also include separate races for JR and Cadet riders.

For more information, schedule of events and entry form go to
Rosemary - race director
Jeremy Storie - program director

Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under Stage 6: Adelaide City Council circuit, 90km
Courtesy organizers

After 735 kilometres and six days of racing the outcome of the 2003 Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under came down to the final, frantic sprint across the line in today's stage over 90 kilometres of the four kilometre Adelaide City Council Circuit.

Seven of the remaining 88 riders in the field began the day within nine seconds of the overnight leader, Mikel Astarloza (Esp - Ag2R Prevoyance), forcing some of the most hotly contested sprinting in the history of the race as the fast men did battle for bonus seconds on offer in the SA Lotteries intermediate sprints and at the finish.

"It is amazing to think that these superb athletes could do battle day after day over hundreds of kilometres and go into the final stage with so little time separating them," said Ms Belinda Dewhirst, General Manager, Australian Major Events. "They have turned on a fabulous show for the 465 thousand local, interstate and international fans who have lined the route this week to cheer them on."

"To have it all come down to the final day - we couldn't ask for a better end to one of the most successful Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under events yet," said Ms Dewhirst welcoming the announcement by the State Government that the event would be staged in South Australia until 2009 . "We look forward to more of the same in the coming years as the Tour continues to hold South Australia spellbound every January."

Astarloza wore the leader's yellow jersey after officials yesterday resorted to a count-back of previous stage places to split he and Denmark's Lennie Kristensen (CSC) who were tied on time after 645km of racing over five days. But breathing down their necks were Giampaolo Caruso (Ita - ONCE Eroski) at four seconds, Stuart O'Grady (AUS - Credit Agricole) at five seconds, Paolo Lanfranchi (ITA - Ceramiche Panaria - Fiordo) at seven seconds, Xavier Florencio (Esp - ONCE Eroski) at seven seconds and Patrick Jonker (Aus - UniSA) at nine seconds.

The AG2R team plan was to gobble up the bonus seconds to protect Astarloza's lead and they did it in style.

On the first sprint at the 36 kilometre mark Astarloza's team mate and three time Tour de France stage winner, Jaan Kirsipuu, surged across the line with his Estonian compatriot and AG2R team mate Erki Putsep second. O'Grady claimed third and a one second time bonus moving him ever closer to the leader.

"We really decided yesterday to go for it at any price," said Kirsipuu after the stage. "Stuart (O'Grady) was the real danger."

All eyes were waiting for the next sprint to see if home town hero O'Grady could pull off a third fairytale win. He had done it before in 2001 when he went into the final stage equal on time with German Telekom rider Kai Hundertmark but trailing on a count back. On that day he claimed the bonuses needed to take the overall win by a mere two seconds.

Could he do it again? 60,000 fans lining today's route were willing him on, hoping for another fairytale finish.

Under the start-finish arch at 54 kilometres on lap 12 it was again Kirsipuu who did the job for his race leader but this time it was another of his team mates, reigning Irish road champion Mark Scanlon (AG2R), second across the line and Lanfranchi picked up a valuable one second bonus for third. O'Grady was fourth across the line and missed out on a bonus.

36 kilometres of racing remained and still five riders were in with a chance of overall honours depending on the placings across the line with 6, 4 and 2 second bonuses awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd.

"My team will get me up there and I just have to win - no pressure - with all those 'Stueys on a Stick" waving at me you have to," joked O'Grady at last night's Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under 5th Anniversary Gala Dinner when asked about the pressure of riding in front of thousands of fans waving cut outs of his face from the side of the road.

As the finish approached the tension grew and the pressure on O'Grady was intense. O'Grady had to finish in the top two and ahead of the leading pair to be in the running. But it was not to be. The entire field wheeled in to the finishing straight in a furious sprint with the race fast men hunting stage honours.

Across the line it was Sydney's Graeme Brown (Ceramiche Panaria - Fiordo) who finally secured a stage win. He was relegated on Stage One to last place for dangerous sprinting and was beaten by a centimetre on the third stage by Robbie McEwen (AUS - Lotto Domo).

"I wanted to beat him and I thought I could," said Brown about McEwen who pulled out with a knee injury during Stage Five. "I'm very disappointed he's not here but it's in his best interests that he's not."

"We all want him in the Tour de France mixing it up with the best," said Brown. "It's been so close but so far (in the earlier stages) but today it's good to go out on a high note."

Brown crossed the line in a winning time of 1hr52min09sec with Victorian Baden Cooke ( second and Kirsipuu third. O'Grady crossed in fourth place.

The final standings in the race saw Astarloza first in a time of 17hr17min45sec while Kristensen remained equal on time but still second overall

"They (AG2R team mates) did a great job and I really owe it to them," said 23 year old Astarloza. "Had my first ride as a professional here in the Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under (2002) and to come back and win it is fantastic."

"This is my first race win and the only thing I really hoped to do coming into this race was to try and ride well but I didn't even dream of winning," said the new champion.

O'Grady finished as the highest placed Australian four seconds back equal with Caruso on time but once again ahead on a countback.

"Yesterday's stage definitely took a lot out of me and it was a pretty big call to try and match it with the best sprinters after the last few days efforts," said O'Grady. "I gave it everything and was only a couple of places off."

"I was just not quick enough today," said O'Grady. "You dig deep some days and you're gonna pay for it on other days so on the whole I'm pretty happy."

Jersey Winners for the 2003 Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under

2003 Jacob's Creek Tour Down Under champion - Mikel Astarloza (Esp - Ag2R Prevoyance)
SA Lotteries Sprint Classification - Andrea Tafi (Ita - CSC)
Laubman & Pank King of the Mountains - Cadel Evans (Aus - Telekom)
Share the Road Best Young Rider U/23- Gene Bates (Aus - UniSA)
Monroe Winning Team - ONCE Eroski
Stage 6 - Century 21 Most Aggressive Rider - Daniele Nardello (Iya - Telekom)

1 Graeme Brown (Aus) Panaria Fiordo 1:52:09
2 Baden Cooke (Aus) FDJeux:com
3 Jaan Kirsipuu (Est)  Ag2R
4 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Credit Agricole
5 Tom Boonen (Bel) Quickstep-Davitamon
6 Nicola Gavazzi (Ita) Saeco-Longoni Sport
7 Stefan Schumacher (Ger)  Telekom
8 Bernhard Eisel (Aut) FDJeux:com
9 Julian Dean (NZl) CSC
10 Luke Roberts (Aus) UniSA all s.t.

Final GC
1 Mikel Astarloza (Esp) Ag2R 17:17:45
2 Lennie Kristensen (Den) CSC s.t.
3 Stuart O'Grady (Aus) Credit Agricole at 0:04
4 Giampaolo Caruso (Ita) ONCE Eroski s.t.
5 Paolo Lanfranchi (Ita) Panaria Fiordo 0:06
6 Xavier Florencio (Esp) ONCE Eroski 0:07
7 Patrick Jonker (Aus) UniSA 0:09
8 David Canada (Esp) Quickstep-Davitamon 0:13
9 Stefen Wesemann (Ger) Telekom 0:15
10 Cadel Evans (Aus) Telekom s.t.
11 Fabio Sacchi (Ita) Saeco-Longoni Sport 0:16
12 Andy Flickinger (Fra) Ag2R 0:32
13 Russell Van Hout (Aus) UniSA 0:39
14 Daniele Nardello (Ita) Telekom 0:43
15 Luke Roberts (Aus) UniSA 0:44
16 Angel Vicioso (Esp) ONCE Eroski 0:45
17 Michael Rogers (Aus) Quickstep-Davitamon
18 Geert Van Bondt (Bel) CSC
19 Gene Bates (Aus) UniSA both s.t.
20 Mark Scanlon (Irl) Ag2R 0:47


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