EV/dEVO at BC Provincial Road Race Championships
The Westside Classic took place on Sunday June 3rd at UBC under brilliant sunshine and record June temperatures. Escape Velocity and dEVO riders were well represented across all of the Provincial Championship races, proudly displaying their red and green jerseys at the front of the pack, leading and driving the pace up Camosun St hill, down 16th Ave, and along South West Marine Drive.
Tim Abercrombie's big move in the Cat 1/2 Men's race. Photo: Greg Descantes
In the combined Masters A/B/C event, Masters A Escape Velocity riders Russ Stead (6th) and Bob Chew (13th) managed to crack the top 20. Alex Pope was 6th in the Masters B field, and Kenny James was 6th and David Kosick 13th in the Masters C field.
The Men's 4/5 race had several attempts to animate the race from Ben Jackson up the Camosun hill, but also wound up coming down to a pack sprint. dEVO espoir rider Mark Dormer was 5th, EV's Brian Postlethwaite 13th, dEVO's Cameron Thorpe 16th, Ben Jackson 19th, Andrew Peters 23rd, Cat 1/2 team co-manager Jak New 30th, Colin Campell 45th, Steven Herbert 48th, Steven Ou 49th, and Mark Wan in his first major road race attempt finishing 59th. Fun fact of the Cat 4/5 race: Jakub Wasiela broke his saddle bolt and rode for 2 solid laps with a saddle sliding backwards and forwards on its rails. According to Jake, he didn't get out of the saddle the whole time, preferring to stay seated as he figured out what he could do. Unfortunately, he DNF'd....
Camile Nonis (dEVO) was 5th in the Junior Women's race, while dEVO teammates Rachel Canning and Kyla Giesbrecht finished 9th and 14th respectively in the Cat 4 Women's event.
The odds looked pretty good for a green jersey to appear on the podium in the Junior Men's race, with 10 of the 19 riders belonging to the dEVO program. The Junior men stayed together for a while until Kevin Thorpe (Escape Velocity-DEVO) and Jeff Clarkson (Aviawest-Rocky Mountain) took a flyer. The two continued to stretch their lead with strong cooperation though the bulk of the 9 laps, but when it came to the end Jeff Clarkson had too much in the tank and took a great solo victory ahead of his break companion Thorpe. For all of you juniors out there, watch out: Kevin is actually still a Cadet. He's got a couple years of Junior racing still to come...
Kevin Thorpe on the attack. Photo: Greg Descantes
Shortly after 2 riders that had been trying to bridge up came in for a sprint for third with Alex Van Poppelen (Total Restoration Cycling Team) taking the final podium from Cody Campbell (Escape Velocity–DEVO).
The other dEVO riders followed with Jason Manning (5th), DJ Manning (7th), Angus Straight (12th), Curtis Jung (14th), Tavis Schwingboth (15th), and Ollie Newton and Jacob Swingboth just outside of the time cut.
The Senior Men's race had great representation from the EV Cat 1/2 team along with some strong Cat 3 riders. Early on, EV was active with Mike Scheske covering the first major selection. It didn't take long until the main move of the day went. Tim Abercrombie and Mike Scheske made the move, which contained major representation from Trek Red Truck, Masi Adobe, Lazy-Boy, and all 3 Symmetrics riders in attendance (Crichton, Sherstibitoff, and Routely).
Once established, the lead group didn’t settle down though and every lap through there was a new group of 2 or 3 riders taking a shot at getting away or at least making the other teams chase them down in support of their teammates. Mike Scheske cramped up half-way through, leaving Tim Abercrombie on his own to fend against the pairings of Symmetrics, Masi, Trek, and Lazy-Boy.
With one lap to go, the lead group was still together and half-way down Marine Drive, following a series of attacks and counter-attacks, EV's Tim Abercrombie decided to give it a shot. Tim looked over his shoulder to see he'd established a clean break and put his head down as he headed towards Camosun for the last climb of the day. Tim's lead extended to 20 seconds at the top of the climb as the chase bore down.
Coming onto 16th, Tim's lead diminished as Dave Vukets from Trek Red Truck sold himself out for teammate Ryan Anderson and put in a huge effort to bring the chase back to striking distance. With 200M to go, the chase caught Tim as he was swarmed by the hard-charging Anderson, Howard (Masi-Adobe), Sherstibitoff, and Crichton (Symmetrics) at the line. Tim finished 5th.
Tim won the "Most Agressive Rider Award" for his efforts and some big cheers from the crowd.
Chris Squires and John Tolkamp had escaped from the pack in the few laps leading into the finish and managed to pick up 15th and 18th place. Remaining survivors in the Cat 1/2 race included Owen Sturgess (31st), Jonathan Page (35th), Paul Beard (36th), and Damien Waugh (38th).