August 10, 2004 – Last year’s TransRockies Challenge champions, Andreas Strobel, of Germany, and Silvio Wieltschnig, from Austria, chased yesterday’s first stage winners Andreas Hestler of Vancouver and Karl Platt of Germany for most of today’s 95 km course from Blairmore to Dutch Creek, Alberta. They finally caught up and crossed the finish line to capture the stage jersey with a time of 3:58.45, one second ahead of yesterday’s leaders.
“Our pace was probably too fast at the start so we faded towards the finish,” said Hestler, who also had chain problems towards the end of the stage. “Stobel and Wielstchnig just kept up their strong and steady rhythm to catch us.”
Karl Arnold, 43, and Stephan Ruttimann, 40, both of Switzerland, continue to lead the master’s category finishing the day in 4:36:57. Canadians Francois Amyot, 47, and Daniel Auclair, 45, completed the stage in 5:16:16 to hold second place.
In the mixed category, there was no change in the ranking, with Niclas Christoffersson of Canmore and Marg Fedyna of Edmonton maintaining their lead with a finish today of 4:46:14 over Eric Warkentin and Louise Kobin, both from California, who finished in 4:57:31.
Yesterday’s women’s winners Karen Eller and Sabrine Grona from Germany, maintained their lead, finishing today’s stage in 5:29:41. They were followed by Christina Begy, a member of last year’s women’s championship team and her partner Joan Orgeldinger who moved up to second place with a time of 5:42:56.
Tomorrow’s third stage of the TransRockies Challenge features more than 2,700 metres of climbing and fast downhills over 97 km of track between Dutch Creek and Etherington Creek campground in Kananaskis Country, Alberta. Riders will be treated to some of the most beautiful vistas in the Canadian Rocky Mountains when they reach the summit of Rye Ridge The event will finish in Canmore, Alberta this Saturday, Aug. 14, where winners will share $20,000 in prize money.
Inaugurated in 2002, the TransRockies Challenge is based on the successful TransAlps Challenge. Both events are organized by upsolut mv. Gmbh of Munich, Germany. Sponsors of the TransRockies Challenge are Travel Alberta, Sugoi, Devinci, Glenmore Audi, The Bike Shop and Refresh.
To read daily reports from the trenches as Paul Newitt and Nels Guloien (both riding for Team Pedal/Kona) complete TR 2004, click here:
Check http://www.transrockies.com/media/2004_stage_2.html for full results.