Kendall Ryan (L39ION of Los Angeles) defended her 2022 title Saturday and won the women’s elite race at the Audi Denver Littleton Twilight Criterium. Jordan Parra (American Cycling Group) earned his first victory of the year in the men’s event. The Colorado races were the eighth stop in the American Criterium Cup national series.
The women’s contest on the six-corner, L-shaped course in the historic downtown of Littleton saw multiple attacks, with DNA Pro Cycling’s Daphne Karagianis surging with a solo break for the bulk of the second half of the race. As the setting sun wiped away shadows, the peloton sensed urgency and erased the escape.
Ryan crossed the line with room to spare for her fifth win of the season. Valentina Scandolara (Denver Disruptors) outsprinted Paola Muñoz (Miami Nights) to round off the podium.
Ryan gave all the credit to Julyn Aguila, the only other L39ION teammate on the two-rider squad in Littleton, as former two-time US pro criterium champion took aim on the final corner.
“Yeah, Julyn just did the work of five people, which was awesome. I was just happy to be at the right spot on some wheels and try to win the last corner,” Ryan said at the finish. “With one other teammate in the group, you only have so many cards to play. It was a real gamble letting certain breaks go up the road. We knew that if there were three or four [riders in a break], we definitely wouldn’t want to let it go.
“This race is super fun. My first time was last year in the rain, so that was crazy. I’m happy to defend the win.”
With her third place, Muñoz extends her overall ACC lead to 580 points, 163 ahead of Miami Nights teammate Andrea Cyr and 246 ahead of Samantha Schneider (L39ION of Los Angeles). While Muñoz had all but locked up the individual title with two races remaining in the series, Kim Lucie of DNA Pro Cycling scored enough points to lock in the sprint tilt and force a quartet of riders – DNA teammate Holly Breck, Alexis Ryan (L39ION of Los Angeles), Rachel Plessing (ButcherBox), Leah Kirchmann (Denver Disruptors) to race for second place.
The men’s race saw a disruption by a massive move on the opening lap by Denver Disruptors’ Riley Sheehan, which turned into a solo time trial that opened a 25-second gap. But the squads of American Cycling Group, ButcherBox Cycling p/b LOOK and Miami Nights closed down the threat and set up a bunch sprint.
American Cycling’s Parra scored the win ahead of Clever Martinez (Miami Nights). Dusan Kalaba (ButcherBox Cycling p/b LOOK) then grabbed third place ahead of Alfredo Rodriguez (Miami Nights).
ACC men’s overall leader Danny Summerhill (American Cycling Group) retained his top position in the standings with a sixth-place finish, 529 total ACC points, but Rodriguez closed the gap to just 29 points making the final two rounds critical. Kalaba remained in third overall with 312 points, an 11-point margin over Martinez.
“All the drama early season coming to this, I’m super, super, super happy for Jordan,” said Summerhill.
Summerhill continued a strong hold on the green jersey with 150 points, and only teammate Michael Hernandez was able to catch him, 75 points back.
Race number nine of the 10-event American Criterium Cup takes place on August 26 in Indianapolis, Indiana, at the IU Health Momentum Indy. The finale is September 3 in St. Louis, Missouri, at the Giro della Montagna, which is part of the four-day Gateway Cup.
|Pos.||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Kendall Ryan (L39ION of Los Angeles)||0:59:15|
|2||Valentina Scandolara (Denver Disruptors)|
|3||Paola Muñoz (Miami Nights)|
|4||Mariana Valadez (LA Sweat)||0:00:01|
|5||Kaitlyn Agnew (ButcherBox Cycling p/b LOOK)||0:00:02|
|6||Daphne Karagianis (DNA Pro Cycling)|
|7||Leah Kirchmann (Denver Disruptors)|
|8||Julianna Rutecki (Miami Blazers)||0:00:03|
|9||Kate Seiler (CCB p/b LLG)|
|10||Holly Simonson (LA Sweat)||0:00:04|
|Pos.||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Jordan Parra (American Cycling Group)||1:01:28|
|2||Clever Martinez (Miami Nights)||0:00:01|
|3||Dusan Kalaba (ButcherBox Cycling p/b LOOK)|
|4||Alfredo Rodriguez (Miami Nights)|
|5||Brandon Feehery (Miami Blazers)|
|6||Danny Summerhill (American Cycling Group)||0:00:02|
|7||Andrew Giniat (ButcherBox Cycling p/b LOOK)|
|8||Sam Morris (Project Echelon Racing)|
|9||Luke Elphingstone (Primal-Audi Denver)|
|10||Riley Sheehan (Denver Disruptors)||0:00:03|