Ventoso Wins Wachovia USPRO Championship

News & Results

06/7/2004| 0 comments
by Thomas Valentinsen

Ventoso Wins Wachovia USPRO Championship

Ventoso takes win; Rodriguez claims national road champion title.

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Francisco Ventoso (ESP) of Prodir Saunier Duval, one of the world?s top young cyclists at only 22 years old, narrowly edged out Antonio Bucciero (Ita) of Saeco in an all out field sprint to capture the title at the 2004 Wachovia USPRO Cycling Championship. Ventoso won with a time of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" /?>, just thousandths of a second ahead of Bucciero and third place finisher Gord Fraser (Can) of Health Net-Maxxis. Fred Rodriguez, the first American finisher and fourth overall, of the Aqua & Sapone team captured his third National Road Cycling Championship.

 

A crowd of the more than 500,000 urged the pro cyclists along through cool, cloudy conditions as they completed 156 miles through the streets of
Philadelphia
, which includes 10 steep climbs up the grueling 17 percent grade of ?The Wall? in historic Manayunk. The field at the 20th Annual Wachovia USPRO consisted of 20 teams and 175 riders.

 

Ventoso was also named the Pro Cycling Tour?s ?Best Young Racer? for today?s race. Like Ventoso, second place finisher Antonio Bucciero is also only 22 years of age. Ventoso and Bucciero, both first year pros, have officially put their names on the cycling map with their performances today.

 

?This is my best ever victory at this level,? said Ventoso. ?I am beyond happy. At the end, my team lead me to the sprint and that is what gave me the opportunity to win.?

 

Rodriguez claimed his third National Road Cycling Championship title as the top
US
finisher in the Wachovia USPRO Championship. Rodriguez won the overall race in 2001 and was the top
US
finisher in 2000 and was second overall that year.

 

A new Subaru King of the Mountains was crowned as Doug Ollerenshaw of Jelly Belly-Aramark. This competition rewards the best climbing cyclist who amasses the most points on the Manayunk Wall and Lemon Hill.

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