It was a mission completed for Evelyn Stevens (Specialized-lululemon), who successful defended her title at the Philadelphia Cycling Classic on Sunday in Pennsylvania. She climbed to victory atop Manayunk Wall ahead of a runner-up Lex Albrecht (Twenty16 Pro Cycling), who was quickly gaining ground but ran out of road before the finish line, and Lauren Hall (Optum presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies) in third.
"My team laid it all on the line for me," Stevens said. "When I went, I knew that I had to completely empty my tank. I was not going to look back until I was over the finish line. I had an idea that I had won with 100 meters to go, but I didn’t want to get cocky, so I had no victory salute because I wanted to make sure that I had it. On these kinds of courses, you can win or lose in the last 25 meters. When your team does everything for you — it’s really special."
Triple national champion, Alison Powers (UnitedHealthcare), reaped the rewards of being in an all-day solo breakaway and secured both the climber and sprint competitions. Kristabel Doebel-Hickok (Tibco-To The Top) earned the event’s Miji Reoch Award for being the top under-23 rider.
Kiel Reijnen (UnitedHealthcare) celebrated his birthday with a second consecutive win at the UCI 1.1 Philadelphia Cycling Classic on Sunday in Pennsylvania. He sprinted to the top of Manayunk Wall ahead of Jure Kocjan (Team SmartStop) and Dion Smith (Hincapie Sportswear Development).
"My teammates dragged me all the way round the last lap and dropped me off at the bottom of the climb," said Reijnen, who won the sprint to the top of the climb by multiple bike lengths. "I didn’t know that I had won by such a big gap, I didn’t look back. It’s nice to win on my birthday but the goal coming into the race was to win for the team."
Joseph Rosskopf (HIncapie Sportswear Development) won the King of the Mountain (KOM) award, Joshua Berry (Team SmartStop) earned the sprint award and Jacob Rathe (Jelly Belly p/b Maxxis) the young rider competition.
Birthday boy wins on Manayunk Wall
Newly crowned national road champion, Eric Marcotte (Team SmartStop) rolled up to the Manayunk Wall start line in all smiles and wearing a brand new stars-and-stripes kit that he won a week prior at the USA Cycling Professional Championships in Chattanooga, positioning himself beside defending champion, Reijnen.