News from the Tennessee Valley Sports
MONDAY, MAY 7, 2007

Women’s pro division riders fly through the turn at Johnston Street and onto First Avenue Southeast, led by eventual second-place finisher Catherine Powers.
Daily photo by Gary CosbyJr.
Women’s pro division riders fly through the turn at Johnston Street and onto First Avenue Southeast, led by eventual second-place finisher Catherine Powers.


Happy birthday, Tina

Colavita/Sutter Homes rider Tina Pic celebrated her 41st birthday on Sunday.

While Pic didn’t win The Decatur Daily Downtown Criterium women’s race, she did pick up the overall points championship for the women’s Southeast Crit series, defeating Laura Van Gilder of the Cheerwine team.

Cheerwine rider Sarah Uhl beat out Catherine Powers in the final sprint to win the individual race Sunday. Uhl finished with a time of 1 hour, 5:18.2 minutes, and Powers crossed the line at 1:05:18.5.

Coming into the race Pic held such a small advantage over Van Gilder, that if she finished more than two spots behind her, Pic would not win the overall series.

So Pic stalked Van Gilder the whole race, staying right with her and never letting Cheerwine’s leader get too far ahead.

Van Gilder finished seventh in the race, while Pic finished eighth, .4 seconds behind her main rival.

“It was quite stressful because I had to follow Laura,” Pic said. “I like to sit up front and race the race, but I couldn’t and I had to play it that way. It wasn’t much fun.”

Pic finished with 1,909 points to Van Gilder’s 1,872. Katharine Carroll from the Aaron’s team came in third place with 1,743 points.

Lamp has tough day

Stuart Lamp, one of the race organizers, a Decatur resident and a rider for the Memphis Motorwerks team, had a tough day in the Pro-Am race.

The reason?

Lamp was dehydrated before the Decatur race after competing in various events the past two weeks.

He arrived back in Decatur from Colorado on Saturday, but felt ill. He said he went to the hospital and collapsed in the emergency room. But Lamp didn’t want to miss the day that he helped organize.

“I was lucky to even start today,” Lamp said. “I was kind of overheated and that was it.”

According to Lamp, the hospital gave him three bags of saline, and he was ready to go.

Coggin returns home

Athens native Greg Coggin came back to his home area for the first time in almost a year to race in the men’s Pro-Am.

He had a back injury flare up during the race and finished 55th in 1:16:51.2, which was 30.2 seconds off the lead.

Coggin moved to California about a year ago and had been designing bikes for design company ABE and racing for Cynergy Cycles.

“It’s just nice to have an event in my hometown,” Coggin said. “My dad read up on bike racing in the paper and on the Internet, so he knew more about it than I thought he would.”

Late entries have big day

When the rider with the number “100” pinned on his back rode into second place of the men’s race, the collective question from race command was “Who is this guy?”

Michael Olheiser, a Huntsville native who finished second, did not register until an hour before the race, so he wasn’t on the entry list.

“But I was planning on (racing) this race for a while,” Olheiser said.

Another late entry was Masters race winner Patrick Raines of the TIME Development Team.

Raines, who works with the team, said he was feeling sick from a head cold he had fought all week. But his fellow riders nudged him to enter the race, so he did.

“The guys said, ‘You have to get out there and do it,’ ” Raines said. “I rode two practice laps, and then just went ahead and got dressed.”

Amateur winner

The overall winner of the men’s Southeast Crit series will be back in work Monday at a bike shop in Winston Salem, N.C.

Mark Hekman, 29, from the amateur Abercrombie and Fitch team said that he and his teammates paid for hotels and gas money on their own just for a chance to race competitively.

After winning the Athens (Ga.) Twilight Criterium, and maintaining the overall lead throughout the series, Hekman is hoping he gets noticed by a major professional team.

“I’ve been in the scene for a few years, but winning at Athens was big and being able to maintain the overall lead was big,” Hekman said. “It’s all about who you know in cycling. but we’ll see what happens.”

Josh Cooper,
Daily Sports Writer

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