Sunday, June 03, 2012

USA Crits in Chicago. Boise's Liza Rachetto steps up takes 2nd!

Gorry nabs first USA Crits win in Chicago

Ted Burns
June 2, 17:21,
June 2, 18:16

Devon Gorry, (NOW and Novartis for MS) , rode away early from the field on the narrow twisty streets of Chicago's North Shore to win ahead of her break companions Liza Rachetto (Primal/MapMyRide Women's Racing), and Kaitlin Antonneau (Exergy 2012), at the inaugural Lake Bluff Criterium. US Crit Series leader Erica Allar ( led the field in 30 seconds later to take the field sprint for fourth. The race marked Gorry's first USA Crit series win, and kicked off a big week for the former Chicago resident, who is graduating from a Ph. D program at the University of Chicago next week.

Rachetto, Antonneau drive breakaway but come up just shy.

The tight, technical, six corner course enabled NOW and Novartis for MS, Primal/MapmyRide, and to control the race early on. "We wanted to go from the start, and make it a hard race," said Gorry. "The course is really narrow, so it's a good course for breaks to go, and we wanted to be up front because it just gets strung out."

Gorry and Rachetto found themselves up the road 12 laps into the race and were soon joined by Antonneau, the U23 Cyclocross Champion, who is preparing for the criterium rich Nature Valley Grand Prix. "We saw the break up the road," said Antonneau "Cari Higgins is here with us, she's a good sprinter, so I just figured I'd try to bridge up the break and if we got caught she'd be there for us."

"For a long time we just had 10 seconds, 10 seconds, 10 seconds, I thought it was going to come back because it went off early," said Gorry "All of a sudden at 5 laps to go we were at 20 seconds, then 30 seconds, and it was going to stick."

Back in the pack, veteran Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom Racing) did what she could to motivate the chase but failed to find any takers. "I wasn't going to be complacent and let the break get up the road, so I tried to get across but I was pretty heavily marked," said Van Gilder "I thought if we could bring it close enough it would animate some things which would bring it back, and reshuffle."

Going into the final laps Rachetto, who is fresh off the Exergy Tour, knew she had some speed left, but wasn't sure if it would be enough to defeat Gorry who had been preserving herself more since the break started. "I know Devon was soft pedaling a little more than Katie and I," said Rachetto "I knew it was going to be hard in the sprint, and I just tried to stay on her wheel and come around her, but she had too much speed."

With two laps to go, and their lead up to 30 seconds, Kaitlin Antonneau sprinted past Rachetto and Gorry to win a late race prime. The tactical error would cost Antonneau as neither Rachetto nor Gorry would take the lead from her until the final corner when both racers easily put a few meters on the young rider.

"We came into the last corner really slow, I knew Liza had a good sprint, and I'm not the quickest sprint, so I knew I had to go long, because I have a longer effort in me," said Gorry after her hometown win, "So I just went through the corner and worked really hard to hold it."

Despite her fifth place finish Van Gilder was impressed with the first year event. "The crowds are fantastic, what a great cycling community." said Van Gilder, "I look forward to Lake Bluff being on the calendar again."

Full Results

1Devon Gorry (NOW and Novartis for MS)0:43:12
2Liza Rachetto (Primal/MapMyRide Womens Racing)
3Kaitlin Antonneau (Exergy Twenty12)
4Erica Allar (RideClean/
5Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom Racing)
6Christina Gokey-Smith (NOW and Novartis for MS)
7Nichole Wangsgard (Primal/MapMyRide Womens Racing)
8Alexis Ryan (Team TIBCO II)
9Sarah Fader (Pepper Palace/Spin-Tech Trainin)
10Cari Higgins (Exergy Twenty12)

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