Stage 4 – Avon to Mountain Star TT
Distance: 9.6 miles, | 15.4 km
Elevation Gain: 1,898 feet | 579 M+
The Stage 4 Individual Time Trial in Avon, Colorado featured a challenging course that included steep climbs and a fast, technical descent. Rolling down the official start ramp at 30-second intervals, riders had 3 miles (5km) of flat to rolling terrain before taking a right turn onto the first of two steep pitches. After cresting the summit of the first climb about 6 miles (9.5km) into the stage, riders sped down a steep and twisting descent before taking a hard right turn directly onto the second and final climb. With the time trial wrapping up early in the day, riders had the opportunity to focus on rest, recovery, and exploring Avon, Colorado. The final phase of the 2018 Mavic Haute Route Rockies begins tomorrow, with the first of three consecutive stages featuring summits between 11,000-14,000 feet above sea level.
Kate Williams – Denver, Colorado
About Kate: Kate is a masters racer with the Naked Women’s Racing team and serves as the Grassroots Manager for Haute Route North America. She played a huge role in encouraging women to join the Mavic Haute Route Rockies this year. This is her first time riding an Haute Route.
About the ride: “The time trial was amazing today. There were two good climbs going up to Wild Ridge. It was beautiful and the scenery was incredible”.
“There are over 40 women at this event and although some of us are competitive and we have an eye on the results, the community has come together and we cheer each other on and support each other. Anyone can do this. Yes, you have to train, but there’s room for all of us here. It’s about love for the sport and pushing yourself. I’ve made some friends for life this week.”
Bill Plock - Arvada, Colorado
About Bill: Bill has completed eight Ironman’s and was part of the Carmichael Training Systems triathlon team for a few years. He is the owner and editor of 303Cycling.com and 303Triathlon.com. This is his second Haute Route.
About the ride: “I’ve met a lot of people, even from here in Colorado, who I only knew through social media or some names I recognized from the cycling community but had never met in person before. There’s a good community of people here that I’ve enjoyed getting to know and it gets more fun every day. My favorite part so far was the time trial today. It was just long enough to push you, but not over the top.”
“As a triathlete, I think Haute Route is the perfect way to reach a new level of cycling stamina and endurance. You have a full week to focus on cycling and not worry about running or swimming. I also really like the camaraderie, it’s nice to have people to talk to along the route.”
Joey Dussich – New York City, NY
About Joey: Joey is a triathlete from New York. This is his first Haute Route.
About the ride: “Colorado is amazing. I’ve had several moments of gratitude throughout the week, looking around and thinking, ‘this is unbelievable’. The time trial today was a lot of fun and a cool way to mix up the week. I would’ve liked to go harder on the climb, but the altitude was challenging for me.”
Jennifer Sharp - Boulder, Colorado
About Jennifer: Jennifer is a full-time USA Cycling Level 1 certified coach and is TrainingPeaks Level 1 certified. She has competed internationally on the track and was a tandem pilot for the USA Paralympic team, representing the US at multiple international events. This is her first Haute Route.
About the ride: “When you’re racing, you get blinders on and you can’t see the beauty of this area. It’s been great to be able to sit up and see the rolling hills and the Colorado River.”
“The Haute Route feels like an evolution for cycling that needed to happen. This format is amazing and I think it is appealing to the masses. Haute Route feeds the fuel for a master racer like me because it combines a competitive edge with a social aspect.”
Stage 4 Results
Although it was only a short distance, the Stage 4 Individual Time Trial at the 2018 Mavic Haute Route Rockies featured nearly 1900 feet (780 meters) of climbing. The fastest times of the day were set by Canadian Lyne Bessette (40:17.58) and Russell Finsterwald (32:32.17), enabling both riders to increase their respective leads in the overall classification. Bessette goes into Stage 5 with a sizable 17-minute lead over Nina Donohue in second place. About three minutes behind Donohue, Jaime Brede, Jennifer Schwarz, and Kate Ligler are all within 34 seconds of one another in the battle for third place.
In the men’s race, Russell Finsterwald is holding a more tenuous 2:18 lead over fellow mountain bike pro Ryan Petry. Behind them, retired pro road racer Matthew Cooke leads current cyclocross pro Jamey Driscoll by just 19 seconds in the race for third place, and two-time US Pro Road Race National Champion and Tour de France finisher Matthew Busche rounds out the top five.