Tour de Whitehorse decided by six seconds

The amount of time it takes to strap-on a bike helmet is all that separated the top finishers in the expert men's class of the Tour de Whitehorse, which ended Sunday.

The amount of time it takes to strap-on a bike helmet is all that separated the top finishers in the expert men’s class of the Tour de Whitehorse, which ended Sunday.

After three stages over the weekend, Quebec’s Vincent Lapierre won by just six seconds over second-place finisher Rob Rees.

“I’m a little bit surprised; I didn’t expect that,” said Lapierre, who is living in Whitehorse for the summer. “It was more for fun – to meet people.

“It was a good pack of riders and it was very fun to meet new people. I’m very happy that VeloNorth Cycling Club organized this race and with all the volunteers, it was a great event.

“That was cool. It was good competition.”

Lapierre, who was in the Tour for the first time, won Friday’s 2.5-kilometre hill climb time trial up Robert Service Way and Saturday’s 70-kilometre road race on the Alaska Highway and Miles Canyon Road. He then placed second behind Rees in Sunday’s 20-kilometre time trial on the North Klondike Highway.

“I really liked the hill climb because it was really short and intense,” said Lapierre. “I’m very light, so it’s easier for me to go up than down.”

After three stages, Lapierre had a time of two hours, 12 minutes and 14 seconds. Scott Kerby placed third with a time of 2:14:39.

To win the Tour titles, riders must cycle in all three stages. That left only two eligible for the expert women’s division.

Whitehorse’s Jillian Chown captured the crown winning all three stages in front of last year’s winner, Trena Irving.

“We need more women to come out and race!” exclaimed Chown. “Generally there’s more people that come out. So I was a little disappointed this year.”

Chown finished with an overall time of 2:15:47, up from Irving’s 2:24:05.

“Going into Miles Canyon, there were five of us and that first hill I sprinted up with Vincent, who’s an amazing racer, and we ended up dropping the rest of the pack,” said Chown. “It was really tough going through Miles Canyon to end that race, with those climbs.”

Chown placed second in the two-person mixed division with Jerome McIntyre in the Kluane Chilkat International Bike Relay last month. She also won VeloNorth’s season-opener at the start of May. Chown plans to race in the Tour of Juneau in August.

The men’s sport class also had a narrow finish. Tim Sellers won the hill climb and road race to win the division with a time of 1:57:52. Bill Curtis placed second in 2:02:54.

Another Tour winner included Audrey Sellers in the novice women division.

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RESULTS

Hill climb

Expert men

1st Vincent Lapierre – 5:22

2nd Scott Kerby – 5:47

3rd Rob Rees – 5:49

4th Preston Blackie – 6:32

Expert women

1st Jillian Chown – 5:59

2nd Trena Irving – 6:39

3rd Nadele Flynn – 8:39

Sport men

1st Tim Sellers – 6:26

2nd Bill Curtis – 7:25

Sport women

1st Jennifer Curtis – 6:38

Novice men

1st Brace Lemphers – 7:34

Novice women

1st Audrey Sellers – 13:36

Road race

Expert men

1st Vincent Lapierre – 1:35:12

2nd Rob Rees – 1:35:33

3rd Scott Kerby – 1:37:06

4th Preston Blackie – 1:45:16

Expert women

1st Jillian Chown – 1:36:07

2nd Trena Irving – 1:42:31

Sport men

1st Tim Sellers – 1:17:03

2nd Bill Curtis – 1:22:32

Novice men

1st Brace Lemphers – 1:42:24

2nd Matthew Knaack – 1:42:30

Novice women

1st Audrey Sellers – 2:12:07

Time trial

Expert men

1st Rob Rees – 30:58

2nd Vincent Lapierre – 31:40

3rd Scott Kerby – 31:46

4th Preston Blackie – 35:22

Expert women

1st Jillian Chown – 33:41

2nd Trena Irving – 34:55

Sport men

1st Bill Curtis – 32:57

2nd Tim Sellers – 34:23

Novice men

1st Matthew Knaack – 39:15

2nd Caleb McPherson – 42:07

3rd David Jackson – 53:15

Novice women

1st Audrey Sellers – 50:59

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com

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