Roughly 20 women lined up for the start of the Wente Pro,1,2 Road Race, including the NOW/Novarits duo of Beth Newell and Devon Gorry, Team Exergy 2012 powerhouse Alison Tetrick, 4 riders from Stevens p/b Pactimo, and 5 riders from Metromint.
In the lead-in to the first of 5 times up the hill, Amanda Seigle of Metromint (aka Energizer Bunny), and Judy Wexler (Cycles Fanatic Factory Racing) jumped off the front and gained 30-40 seconds by the start of the climb. The group caught them on the climb and Marley Smith (Stevens p/b Pactimo) pushed of the front and gained ground after the highway overpass, initiating what would become the breakaway of the day. Heather Van Sickle (Stevens) and Molly Van Houweling (Metromint) pushed the pace on the descent, and Van Sickle jumped across to her teammate Smith after the left onto Patterson Pass.
The two Stevens riders gained ground on the disorganized bunch, and Seigle jumped off the front (again) and into the gap. She held her position in the gap until the pack caught her on the little hill on Greenville Road. By this point, the Van Sickle and Smith tandem had gained at least a minute on the pack. Soon Seigle attacked (again, again) and gained a substantial gap on the pack. Newell took the opportunity to jump across to Seigle. As the two started up the hill for the second time, Newell forged ahead on her own after the two Stevens riders.
This left the remaining Metromint riders, Van Houweling, Joanna Bechtel, and Annie Fulton, with the task of chasing. They were assisted by Tetrick, Johanna Trueblood (Red Racing) and Kira Prokopakis (Los Gatos). They kept Newell in constant sight for a full lap and caught her at the start of the 3rd time down the descent.
Smith and Van Sickle, however, were nowhere to be seen, and the pack was informed that they were at least a minute and a half up the road. A well-organized chase including all of the remaining riders ensued. As the group neared the bottom of the climb for the 4th and penultimate time the deficit was whittled down to 1:05, and Newell hit the gas once more and struck out into the gap. Unbeknownst to the chasing pack, Van Sickle dropped her chain when starting the climb, delaying the duo up front. They were directly in Newell’s sights as she pushed up the climb. At the overpass Tetrick attacked, and quickly bridged to Newell.
Tetrick and Newell soon joined Van Sickle at the front, and Smith faded back after being in the wind all day. This left a four rider chase group of Van Houweling, Gorry, Trueblood, and Nicole Justice (Stevens). Van Houweling and Trueblood pursued the leading trio, and Justice and Gorry sat on in service of their teammates up the road. Turning onto Greenville road the leading trio had a lead of 55 seconds. Van Houweling went to the front over the top of the little hill on Greenville road, and closed the gap to the (cat-and-mouse playing) leaders just before reaching the 580 underpass.
This left a six rider front group at the base of the final climb. Gorry attacked after the first steep part and floated ahead to victory. Newell jumped ahead of the remaining riders for second. Tetrick put in a late burst of speed to pass the two Stevens riders and finish third. Justice claimed a strong fourth. Van Sickle and Van Houweling rounded out the top six.
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