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By VeloNews Interactive
Day 2 of New Mexico’s Tour of the Gila saw the peloton tackle the Mogollon Pass Road Race, 70 miles for the women and 92 miles for the men, with both groups ending on the 5.5-mile Category 1 climb for which the stage is named. In the end, time trial winners Chris Wherry (Mercury) and Genevieve Jeanson (Rona), extended their holds on the overall race leads. Jeanson took a solo win, while Wherry and teammate Scott Moninger rode away together on the final climb, with Moninger taking the stage win.
In the men’s race, another windy day, coupled with the presence of more than a dozen Mercury jerseys in the peloton, made for a slow start to the point-to-point race starting in Silver City and heading north to Mogollon Pass. In the conditions, almost no one was willing to go off the front, only to be chased down by the Mercury mob. No one except Ofoto-Lombardi Sport’s Reto Lauper, who went on a long break only to be caught before the finishing climb.
On the final climb, it was the usual suspects lining up for battle, including Wherry and Moninger, 7UP’s John Lieswyn, Prime Alliance’s Chris Horner and Danny Pate. Once the two-part climb hit its second steep pitch, however, Wherry and Moninger began to put the distance on the chasers, and would ride away to the one-two finish. Behind, SoBe-Cannondale’s Tom Danielson held off a pair of chasers, Scott Price (Landis-Trek VW) and Lieswyn, while a little further back came Coloradan Andrew Bajadali (Excel Sports), followed by Saturn’s Eric Wohlberg, Pate and Horner.
Wherry leads Moninger in the overall by 41 seconds, but more importantly he extended his lead over third-place Wohlberg to 1:33, with Pate and Lieswyn more than two minutes back.
The women’s race saw another runaway by Jeanson. The day after putting nearly a minute on Kimberly Bruckner (Saturn) in the time trial, Jeanson took her act to the climb, this time riding away from Bruckner once again and opening up a huge lead in the overall.
Saturn had tried to put the pressure on Jeanson and Rona with a couple of breakaways, sending the likes of Ina Teutenberg, Kristy Scrymgeour and Suzanne Sonye out on the break, but in the end, Jeanson’s team had the race together by the start of the climb, and the Canadian climber took over from there.
By the top she had put a gap of 2:47 between Bruckner and herself, with no one else even close. Jeannie Longo was third, 4:31 back of Jeanson. In the overall, Jeanson now leads Bruckner by 3:49, with Saturn’s Anna Millward in third at 6:36 behind.
1. Scott Moninger, Mercury, in 4:05:42; 2. Chris Wherry, Mercury, s.t.; 3. Tom Danielson, SoBe-Cannondale, at 0:37; 4. Scott Price, Landis-Trek-VW, at 0:42; 5. John Lieswyn, 7UP-Nutra Fig, at 0:46; 6. Andrew Bajadali, Excel Sports, at 0:56; 7. Eric Wohlberg (Can), Saturn, at 1:11; 8. Danny Pate, Prime Alliance, at 1:12; 9. Chris Horner, Prime Alliance, at 1:16; 10. Todd Wells, Mongoose-Hyundai, at 1:24.;
1. Wherry; 2. Moninger, at 0:41; 3. Wohlberg, at 1:33; 4. Pate, at 2:22; 5. Lieswyn, at 2:38; 6. Horner, at 2:45; 7. Price, at 3:02; 8. Bajadali, at 3:31; 9. Danielson, at 3:39; 10. Ubaldo Mesa (Mex), Tecos Turbo, at 4:05.;
1. Genevieve Jeanson (Can), Rona, in 3:17:42; 2. Kimberly Bruckner, Saturn, at 2:47; 3. Jeannie Longo (F), Vit’All, at 4:31; 4. Anna Millward (Aus), Saturn, at 4:38; 5. Karen Bockel (G), Rona, at 6:13; 6. Cybil Diguistini (Can), at 7:19; 7. Roz Reekie-May (NZ), Mercy Cycling Team, at 8:05; 8. Katrina Berger, T-Mobile, at 8:09; 9. Kori Kelly, Diet Rite, at 8:43; 10. Joan Wilson, Talgo America, s.t.;
1. Jeanson; 2. Bruckner, at 3:49; 3. Millward, at 6:36; 4. Longo, at 7:15; 5. Diguistini, at 12:11; 6. Berger, at 12:42; 7. Reekie-May, at 14:42; 8. Kelly, at 14:43; 9. Bockel, at 15:07; 10. Leah Goldstein (Can), Bianchi USA, at 15:14.