Eight crowned on Day 3 of Masters Road Nats


The 2011 USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships shifted to downtown Bend for the second day of criterium racing where eight national titles were awarded in front of a festive crowd on a warm Friday.

Over 450 riders contested the 1.2-kilometer, four-corner course through downtown Bend.

Check out a detailed description of the Downtown Bend criterium course map.

Sara Tussey started the day by winning the women's 30-34 criterium in a photo finish.
Sara Tussey started the day by winning the women's 30-34 criterium in a photo finish.
The women’s 30-34 riders picked up where Thursday’s thrilling action left off. The first race of the morning, warmed an otherwise chilly morning. Sara Tussey (Winston Salem, N.C./Hincapie Cycling-Green Creation) launched a solo attack with 18 laps remaining. Tussey held off the peloton’s chase for 10 laps when she was reabsorbed and drifted to the back of the lead group. Tussey waited until the penultimate lap of the race to launch another solo attack resulting in her winning a bunch sprint to the finish line. Alicia Boland (Kent, Wash./Seattle Super Squadra-Cucina Fresca Cycling Team) was just short in a photo finish.

The women’s 35-39 race followed and saw Cheryl Fuller-Muller (Cumming, Ga./Reality Bikes) win a field sprint to the finish line to earn the Stars-and-Stripes jersey.

The men’s 55-59 criterium featured a rarity as a two-rider breakaway got away early in the race and stuck throughout. William Watkins (Lawrenceville, Ga./U.S. Military Academy-Team Army) and Malcolm Hill (Corona Del Mar, Calif./Breakaway-UBS Elite Masters) built a lead of 24 seconds seconds with 17 laps remaining in the 40-kilometer race. The peloton was unable to work together to catch up as Hill and Watkins cooperated, increasing their lead on the 50-rider peloton. As Watkins and Hill turned the final corner, the two riders sprinted to the finish and Watkins found an extra gear to beat Hill to the finish line.

Bubba Melcher (Reno, Nev./Team Clover) won the men’s 50-54 criterium using the blueprint Tussey printed earlier in the day. Melcher broke away early, built a substantial lead before gradually faded back to the peloton before turning on the jets to cruise to a sprint finish and the third Stars-and-Stripes jersey in his collection.

"There's a lot of strength in that field and lot of better sprinters than I,” Melcher said. “In order for me to win a race like this, I've got to be able to win a race like this. It just so happened that later on, the three of us (Melcher with Evan Teske (Mission Viejo, Calif.) and Kevin Metcalfe (Pleasant Hill, Calif./Team Specialized Racing)) got away. It came down to a little drag race between Kevin and I with two to go. He's got a tremendous push and he opened up a bit of a gap on the back side. I wasn't sure if I could close it or not. I told myself that that was the race. Kevin dove down inside, I came outside. I started sprinting from the corner and I thought I went too early. I opened a little gap. I think they might have sat up for a couple seconds and that was the end of it."

Richard Meeker (Corona Del Mar, Calif./Breakaway-UBS Elite Masters) collected his eighth national championship as he won a field sprint. Meeker had previously earned Stars-and-Stripes jerseys in road race, criterium, points race, and team pursuit at the Masters level.

"It was kinda dodgy on the backside in turn 3,” Meeker explained. “My teammate slotted in front of me into third. We were kinda bouncing handlebars with a couple guys. I was fourth out of the last corner. We were coming down the home straight and I didn't want to be too antsy because it's a headwind. If you jump too early, you can blow it real easily on this course. I just had to sit tight coming down the homestretch before I could full throttle it, open it up and go for it."

William Watkins worked with Malcolm Hill before pulling away from him in a sprint in the homestretch to win the men's 55-59 criterium
William Watkins worked with Malcolm Hill before pulling away from him in a sprint in the homestretch to win the men's 55-59 criterium
It appeared as though the men’s 40-44 race would go the way of the men’s 55-59 contest earlier in the day. A four-rider breakaway featuring Jason Walker (Reno, Nev./Marc Pro-Strava), Brian Heneghan (San Jose, Calif./Los Gatos Bicycle Racing Club), Frederick Norton (Towson, Md./Lateral Stress Velo Inc.) and Scott Fonseca (Fair Oaks, Calif./Zenn Racing Team) stayed away from the peloton for approximately half of the race. The peloton eventually did catch them late in the race, creating a field sprint to the finish. Dean LaBerge (Napa, Calif./Team Specialized Racing) emerged from the pack as they completed the final turn. He buried himself in his handlebars and didn’t look back, winning the field sprint to earn the gold medal. The men’s 35-39 race was a rare display of a solo breakaway staying away from the pack for an extended period of time. Michael Olheiser (Huntsville, Ala./Team juwi solar-First Solar) broke away from the pack with 15 laps remaining in the 40-kilometer criterium race. With nobody to work with, Olheiser increased his lead to more than 20 seconds before cruising to the finish, earning the gold medal.

The day’s final race saw the crowds thicken to two-deep around the fencing surrounding the 1.2-kilometer course. In all, the riders contested 40 kilometers in Downtown Bend. Early in the race, a seven-man breakaway worked together to build a large lead on the field. The breakaway consisted of Stephen Bedford (Beaverton, Ore./Team Oregon p/b Laurelwood Brewing Company), Nicholas Brandt-Sorenson (Los Angeles, Calif./Team Velosport Club-Sho-air-Rock ‘n Road), Andrew Crater (Asheville, N.C./AeroCat Cycling), Mathew Davis (Shreveport, La./Team LaS’port), Olivier Humbert (Seattle, Wash./Thumbprint Racing-FareStart p/b Cobalt Mortgage), Eric Marcotte (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and Jonathan Toftoy (Eden Prairie, Minn./Synergy). With approximately 15 laps remaining, the leaders settled into a pace that kept them clear of overtaking the back of the peloton. The seven riders continued working together, until a last-lap sprint landed Marcotte out front through the finish line to win the men’s 30-34 criterium.

The event, which will crown more than 60 national champions through its duration as well as a Best All-Around Rider and Best All-Around Team, continues Saturday with the first of two days of road races. Women 40-and-over, men 60-and-over and tandems will contest the course at Summit High School.

Visit the official event webpage of the 2011 USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships for more information on the event, including a complete schedule, tech guide, results, photo gallery and more. Photos from the event are available for purchase from the event photographers, Cascade Event Photography. Additionally, videos are available for purchase from Adscope Media.

Follow the event on Twitter, using hashtag #RoadNats.

USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships
Aug. 31 – Sept. 4, 2011
Bend, Oregon



Women - 30-34 (40 kilometers)
1. Sara Tussey (Winston Salem, NC/Hincapie Cycling-Green Creation Cycling Team) 1:08:56
2. Alicia Boland (Kent, WA/Seattle Super Squadra-Cucina Fresca Cycling Team) 1:08:56
3. Haley Juno-Galdes (Menlo Park, CA/Alto Velo Racing Club/Webcor) 1:08:56
4. Anne Donley (Denver, CO) 1:08:56
5. Rhonda Serr (Reno, NV/Dolce Vita Cycling) 1:08:56
Women - 35-39 (40 kilometers)
1. Cheryl Fuller-Muller (Cumming, GA/Reality Bikes) 1:10:34
2. Hilary Crowley (Sandy, UT/OCW/Paramount Racing) 1:10:34
3. Amy GraySmith (Aurora, CO/ProDesign Cycling) 1:10:34
4. Mindy Simmons (Portland, OR/Guinness Cycling Team) 1:10:34
5. Samantha Smith (Greenville, SC/Greenville Spinners Bicycle Club-Headstrong) 1:10:34
Men - 30-34 (60 kilometers)
1. Eric Marcotte (Scottsdale, AZ) 1:24:14
2. Mathew Davis (Shreveport, LA/Team LaS'port) 1:24:14
3. Andrew Crater (Asheville, NC/AeroCat Cycling) 1:24:14
4. Stephen Bedford (Beaverton, OR/Team Oregon p/b Laurelwood Brewing Company) 1:24:16
5. Olivier Humbert (Seattle, WA/FareStart p/b Cobalt Mortgage) 1:24:16
Men - 35-39 (50 kilometers)
1. Michael Olheiser (Huntsville, AL/Team juwi solar/First Solar) 1:10:22
2. Kyle Wuepper (Bend, OR) 1:10:44
3. Michael Easter (Ventura, CA) 1:10:44
4. Judd Van Sickle (Sacramento, CA/Folsom Bike/Mercedes Benz) 1:10:44
5. Rory McAdams (Tyler, TX/Matrix Cycling Club-RBM) 1:10:44
Men - 40-44 (50 kilometers)
1. Dean LaBerge (Napa, CA/Team Specialized Racing) 1:10:34
2. Ian Tubbs (Bellevue, WA/Kryki Sports-Audi) 1:10:34
3. Chris DeMarchi (Chino, CA/Pista Palace-SKLZ p/b PISTA PALACE) 1:10:34
4. Jeffrey Hartman (Boulder, CO/Peak to Peak Training Systems-WestSide Cycling) 1:10:34
5. Steven Wright (Beaverton, OR) 1:10:34
Men - 45-49 (40 kilometers)
1. Richard Meeker (Corona Del Mar, CA/Breakaway-UBS Elite Masters) 58:32
2. Patrick Briggs (Oakland, CA/Yahoo Cycling Team) 58:32
3. Eric Martin (Bend, OR/WebCyclery Racing-BendBroadband-WebCyclery.com) 58:32
4. Michael O'Rourke (Auburn, CA/Team Bicycles Plus-SAFEWAY-PureRed Creative-Bicycles Plus) 58:32
5. Mark Noble (Ventura, CA/FRANCO MRI Racing p/b Wins Wheels) 58:32
Men - 50-54 (40 kilometers)
1. Bubba Melcher (Reno, NV/Team Clover) 58:51
2. Kevin Metcalfe (Pleasant Hill, CA/Team Specialized Racing/Team Specialized Racing Masters) 58:52
3. Evan Teske (Mission Viejo, CA) 58:55
4. Chris Black (San Luis Obispo, CA/Morgan Stanley Cycling Team-Specialized) 59:13
5. Eric Pearce (Chelmsford, MA/Cyclonauts Racers Inc.) 59:13
Men - 55-59 (40 kilometers)
1. William Watkins (Lawrenceville, GA/US Military Academy-Team Army) 1:00:22
2. Malcolm Hill (Corona Del Mar, CA/Breakaway-UBS Elite Masters) 1:00:24
3. Robert Downs (Madison, WI/Planet Bike) 1:00:46
4. Mark Caldwell (Moraga, CA/Morgan Stanley Cycling Team-Specialized) 1:00:46
5. Henry Schnepf (Newport Beach, CA/Team Velosport Club/Sho-air/Rock 'n Road) 1:00:46

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