Tuesday, May 02, 2006

McCartney's Breakaway and the Phonak Train

Earlier I talked about Jason McCartney going off the front on Stage 4 of the 2006 Tour de Georgia. Here's a shot of Jason pushing up Wolf Pen Gap solo. Wolf Pen Gap KOM was 95.6 miles into the stage of 118.9 miles total. It's a Cat. 2 climb. The riders had already been rained on (and I'm talking about hard rain) and climbed a Cat. 2 at Fort Mountain and a Cat. 4 at Hicks Gap.

Jason jumped on an early breakaway to put pressure on Phonak because he was high enough in the overall to cause alarm. By this point he dropped the rest of the guys in the breakaway and solo'ed the Cat. 2 Wolf Pen Gap and Cat. 3 Woody Gap climbs before being caught on the 13 mile downhill descent into Dahlonega! If my memory serves me right, he was 3 minutes and change ahead of the peloton at this point. We were stationed a kilometer or so from the King of the Mountain, which was flooded with people. If you were there then you know what I mean. The size of the crowd at the KOM really surprised me. Parking was nil all over Wolf Pen Gap so I guess a lot of folks pedaled or walked up there.

Here you can see the Phonak train giving chase with team captain, Floyd Landis, in yellow. Tommy D. (not shown) is a couple back on Floyd (behind the Healthnet rider) keeping a close eye on how things develop.


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