Two new Canadian Road Champions were crowned today in Edmonton, Alberta. After missing on the title last year after cleat mishap meters from the finish line, Joëlle Numainville (Webcor Builders) waited patiently and unleashed her sprint to the take the title in the Elite Women’s Race. Riding with no teammates, Will Routley (Jelly Belly p/b Kenda) ended a 10-year quest to emerge from a 2-man break to take the win in the Men’s Elite Championship.
Redemption for Numainville. In the women’s Elite race, Lex Albrecht (Équipe Cascades-ABC Cycles) tried to ride away with the title by way of a solo break attempt that lasted for six of the nine laps. After reeling in the solo rider, the favorites took control of the race and hunted down any breakaway attempt.
“There were attacks, by the same two or three riders but nothing dangerous. During that time, I was preparing for the sprint.” explained Numainville.
The outcome of the race was an amazing peloton sprint in which Numainville outsprinted local favorite Tara Whitten (Specialized Samson G conseil) and 2009 Canadian Champion Alison Testoete (Cycling BC). Numainville was led out by her teammate Erinne Willock.
“I was really stressed out at the start of the race. However, as the race progressed I studied the finish line, the wind and thought about tactics every time I came around. So I calmed down and at a 100m from the line I knew I had it!“ commented Numainville after her race.
Numainville’s winning time of 3 hours 14 minutes 21 seconds represents a major goal achievement for the young rider, and furthermore it is redemption for last year’s cleat mishap that saw her lose the title a few meters from the finish line.
“I was very disappointed last year, to not win the race so this year, it’s a bit of a revenge.” said Numainville.
A total of 54 women took the start of the 117 km race. 45 women finished the completed the 9 laps of the urban, downtown course.
A long time coming for Routley. The Elite Men’s 182km race exploded from the gun with Spidertech p/b Planet Energy launching the first attack. Attacks flew until 9 riders emerged from the peloton on the third of 14 laps.
In the lead group were a Spidertech trio of Bruno Langlois, Mark Batty and Andrew Randell, a duo from Nativo-PG-Devinci, Jean-Michel Lachance and Andre Tremblay, and Ed Veal (La Bicicletta Elite Team), Derrick St. John (Garneau Chaussures-Ogilvy Renault), Spencer Smitheman (Hagens Berman LLP) and Routley. The riders worked well together so that by the end of five laps, they had a gap of around 3 minutes to the field with a few riders trying to bridge in the middle.
Sensing that this was the move, David Veilleux (Kelly Benefit Strategies) and William Goodfellow (BikeReg.com/Cannondale) gave chase to finally make contact three laps later. A few test attacks in the break caused some commotion but the 11 riders quickly came back together.
More riders, divided into two groups, made their way up. With 3 laps to go, François Parisien, David Boily and Éric Boily (SpiderTechp/b Planet Energy), Trevor Connor (Chris Cookies/Swan Cycles), Michael Joannisse and Arnaud Papillon (Équipe du Québec), Ryan Aitcheson (Team Ontario), Jesse Reams (Cycling BC), Nic Hamilton (Trek Red Truck p/b Mosaic Homes), Aaron Schooler (Team H&R BLOCK) and Rob Britton (BISSELL) bridged up to the group at the front.
Meanwhile, behind them, with so many teams represented in the break, the chasing was left to the Garmin-Transitions duo of Chris Meier and Svein Tuft and Dominique Rollin (Cervelo TestTeam). Meier put in some major pulls to reduce the gap to around one minute but as soon as he came off the front, the gap grew again to three minutes and more. That was it for the field.
With 2 to go, the break splintered under attacks. In the last lap, the duo of Randell and Routley decided to take the matters into their own hands and broke away. In the end, in the final duo sprint, it was Routley who won the dash to the finish line, by a mere bike length.
“The race started pretty aggressive right off the bat. Guys were trying a lot of attacks,” said Routley after the race. “It means a lot to win the Red and White jersey. I have been working at this since my mountain bike days as a junior. I have been on the podium in mountain bike and road, but I’ve been chasing this for ten years. It’s hard to believe.”
Completing the podium was SpiderTech’s Langlois winning bronze.
An impressive 133 men took part in the event, racing 14 laps of the course for a total of 182km race. 83 completed the gruelling race.
Top 5 Women Élite (Complete Results)
1. Joelle Numainville (Webcor Builders)
2. Tara Whitten (Specialized Samson G Counseil)
3. Alison Testoete (Cycling BC)
4. Joanie Caron (Team Nanoblur-Gears)
5. Heather Logan-Sprenger (Team Ontario)
Top 3 Women U23
1. Leah Kirchmann (Trek Red Truck presented by Mosais Homes)
2. Julie Beveridge (Équipe Vienne Futuroscope)
3. Karol-Ann Canuel (Équipe Vienne Futuroscope)
Top 5 Men Élite (Complete Results)
1. Will Routley (Jelly Belly Cycling Team presented by Kenda)
2. Andrew Randell (SpiderTech powered by Planet Energy)
3. Bruno Langlois (SpiderTech powered by Planet Energy)
4. David Veilleux (Kelly Benefit Strategies)
5. Rob Britton (BISSELL Pro Cycling)
Top 3 Men U23
1. Arnaud Papillon (Équipe du Québec)
2. Jesse Reams (Cycling BC)
3. David Boily (SpiderTech powered by Planet Energy)