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Canadians Podium at IPC Europa Cup 2006 in Slovakia

July 23 2006 (Slovakia) – Canadian National IPC Team’s Mark Breton (Charlesbourg, QC), Éric Bourgault (Orford, QC), Jean Quevillion (Ste-Adele, QC) and Mark Beggs (Montreal, QC) made it to the podium in their respective divisions in the time trial event at the Europa Cup held in Slovakia today. 70 athletes from seven nations are racing in categories that include Amputee, Cerebral Palsey, Spinal Cord injured and Visually Impaired.

Six Canadian National Team members are taking part in this IPC Europa Cup, the 5th in a series of six events, held in Northern Slovakia, about 250 km from Bratislava. The Canadian riders are: Mark Breton (Charlesbourg, QC) LC 1 Division, Eric Bourgault (Orford, QC) LC2, Jean Quevillion (Sainte-Adèle, QC) CP 3, Brayden McDougall (Calgary, AB) CP 3, Mark Beggs (Montreal, QC) HC B and Rico Morneau (Montreal, QC) HC B.

Today the 11 km Individual Time Trial course was organised in the very scenic Vratna National Park, starting at the base of the local ski hill and reaching an elevation of 750m. The weather was hot with temperatures in the low 30’s .

The first Canadian rider off was Mark Breton, of Charlesbourg, QC. He completed the circuit in a time of 17:32.16 (37.6), which placed him third in the LC1 Division. The first place rider, Wolfgang Sacher, completed the course in 16:37.78.

The next rider off was Éric Bourgault from Mont Orford, QC, who completed the same course in a time of 18:32.05 (35.6). This placed him first in the LC2 Division.

A few minutes later Jean Quevillion was on the course, his time of 20.17.09 (32.5) was good for first place for the CP 3 Division, however because of the small racing categories the CP 3 and LC 4 divisions were combined for the podium. Michael Teuber’s (GER) time of 19.24.83, was good for first place.

Then Brayden McDougall went to the line and put in a solid time of 20.47.49 (31.7). In the combined results, this time put Brayden in fourth place, behind a new female LC 4 athlete from Germany.

As Stephen Burke, IPC coach for the Canadian Cycling Association, reported: “Today’s course has got to be the toughest route I’ve ever seen Hand Cyclists race on.” Mark Beggs of Montreal, QC, completed the gruelling 11 km circuit in a time of 26.23.23 (25.02). This time is all it took to finally get Mark on the podium at an international event. Rico Morneau (also from Montreal, QC) finished in fourth place behind Laura De Vann (HC-B) of the Netherlands with a time of 28.11.74 (23.41).

“I had the opportunity to follow Mark Beggs as he was our last rider off today. He rode the best race I’ve ever seen him do, he caught a number of riders ahead of him and was right with Rico at the top of the final climb but Rico was able to get away again on the final descent to the finish,” added Burke.

Tomorrow, Sunday July 23, is the road race. The LC 3, LC 4 and CP 3 will combine to compete over the 36 km course in the same National Park. The LC 1, LC 2 and CP 4 will compete together over the 45 km course. The HC A, B and C will ride three laps of the 9 km course.

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