Neo-pro Jade Wilcoxson of the Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies squad put in another impressive display in her breakthrough year yesterday taking the win at the Blue Ribbon Alpine Challenge in Aspen, Colorado yesterday. Alison Powers of NOW and Novartis for MS was second and Wilcoxson’s teammate Leah Kirchmann, third.
“It was a fun race today in Aspen, and our team worked great together,” said Wilcoxson. “After all the work we have done this year to capture the NRC title, it was fun to race in downtown Aspen in front of such an enthusiastic crowd, and it was great to race side by side with our men’s team in the US Pro Challenge.”
Read more about Jade Wilcoxson: Wilcoxson – “My goals coming into the season was to have fun with racing and to be a great team mate.”
In front of thousand of spectators, short-lived breaks that included Carmen Small and some of her Optum-KBS teammates, Olivia Dillon, Christina Gokey-Smith and Robin Farina of NOW and Novartis for MS, USA Cyclocross champion Katie Compton (Trek Cross Collective) and Nicole Duke (Natural Grocers Cycling Team) were formed but nothing was sticking. The field was all back together by the halfway point.
After a breather, Dillon and Jackie Kurth (Primal/MapMyRide) tried to get away but were reeled back in. A bunch sprint seemed imminent but Powers had another idea in mind when she took off solo with 12 minutes left in the race. But Optum was having none of it and caught her, on the final lap.
The race, previously known as the Aspen Women’s race, was shortened from a three-day stage race down to a 60-minute criterium and held on the same streets as the finish of stage 3 of the USA Pro Challenge.
Top 10 Results (see full results)
1. Jade Wilcoxson (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) 58:31
2. Alison Powers (NOW and Novartis for MS) 00:01
3. Leah Kirchmann (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)
4. Carmen Small (Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) 00:02
5. Lindsay Bayer(Aspen Valley Hospital Composite)
6. Katherine Compton(Trek Cross Collective) 00:03
7. Alexia Muffat (FCS|ROUSE p/b Mr. Restore)
8. Lauren Tamayo(Exergy TWENTY12)
9. Jacqueline Kurth (Primal/MapMyRide Womens Racing) 00:06
10. Kimberley Turner (Naked Women’s Racing p/b Tribel)