Megan Rathwell owns the Schwalbe Cycling Classic road race – today’s victory in the women’s race made it her fourth title in five years.
The win for the Broad Street Cycle rider was classic Rathwell. The Victoria woman loves the grinding, hilly races as sees herself as an “attrition” rider, racing to outlast and then outsprint the elite woman field.
“The course was pretty windy, so it was tough to get away (from the pack),” Rathwell said. “It was a cat and mouse game. I knew I could get a sprint finish so I wanted the group to be small at the end so I could get the sprint.”
She now owns the 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017 Metchosin women’s race title, won today’s Queen of the Mountain and will carry the Robert W Cameron Law Cycling Series Omnium jersey into tomorrow’s Russ Hay’s Grand Prix / BC Criterium Championships. Glotman Simpson Cycling’s Janna Gillick was second and TaG Cycling Race Team’s Maggie Coles-Lyster was third, the lead group finishing the 80k race in 2:29:45.
On the men’s side, Rally Cycling’s Adam de Vos won the men’s Schwalbe Cycling Classic in a five-man brawl for the finish line. Despite the unforgiving Metchosin hills and the remorseless winds, the lead pack broke free in the first 20K of the 120K course, a break which held for the entire race.
“I was the instigator,” said deVos of Victoria. “It’s hard racing without team mates especially when you are a mark because of who you are. I wanted to split things up pretty early.”
Who he is, is one of four Robert W Cameron Law Cycling Series alumni (joining pro cyclists Rob Britton, Leah Kirchmann and Gillian Ellsay) who was racing last month’s AMGEN Tour de California, North America’s biggest race.
The five-man break included deVos, Silber Pro Cycling Nigel Ellsay, Smart Savvy++/Garneau’s Mitchell Ketler and Connor Topping and Langlois Brown Racing’s Nigel Kinney. Ketler dropped back a bit with about 30K to go but battled back for the finish line sprint which took the group over the line in 3:03:58.
Ketler won the King of the Mountain and deVos will wear the orange Robert W Cameron Law Cycling Series Omnium jersey tomorrow at the Russ Hay’s Grand Prix / BC Criterium Championships. The three-day series finishes at the BC Legislature with races beginning at 8 a.m., the women’s elite race at 12:30 pm and the men’s elite race at 1:30 p.m.