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Wachovia Invitational — Navigators Report

June 1, 2005 – The 2005 Wachovia racing series got started yesterday evening in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with the 91-Mile Wachovia Invitational. The elite field of 23 teams took the start under warm and sunny conditions, a departure from the rains that typically greet the riders in this southeastern Pennsylvania city, or so it seems.

The pace began at an average speed of 26-MPH and before too long there were three riders in a breakaway; Russell Downing (MG-Power-Litespeed), Doug Ollerenshaw (Health Net/Maxxis) and Richard England (Advantage Benefits/Endeavour). By lap six of 13, their advantage is 1:20 over the peloton, but the chase is on. Within two laps the leaders are reeled back in, but the attacks are continuing.

With the lap counter now showing 4-to-go, a group of 10 escape and are joined by several others to make it 16 total. With four Health Nets, two each from Saunier Duval, Jelly Belly, Advantage/Endeavor, former winner Freddy Rodriguez (Davitamon-Lotto), and a few others, the break powers up the road. Hovering at just over 1-minute for the next couple of laps, the Navigators Insurance and Discovery Channel squads begin to chase with two laps remaining. The chasers, having missed the boat, run out of steam and the gap increases to 1:35.

The leaders come to the line with Greg Henderson (Health Net) taking the win over Rodriguez and Ivan Dominguez (Health Net).

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