Two hundred riders showed up in Asheville, NC for the 2nd Haute Route Asheville gran fondo. Over 3-days they completed two road stages and a individual time trial, totaling 206 miles and 21,065 vertical feet. Yes, it was very tough, but after all the pedaling, descending, sweating and suffering it was cyclocross pro racer Kerry Werner earning the overall and men’s title, but not by much.
After 200 miles and the first two road stages only 17 seconds separated the top 5 riders. Kerry Warner held a razor-thin lead over Jeff Mahin and Hamish Beadle. By razor-thin we mean all 3 were within 0.88 seconds.
It all came down to the third and final stage, a 5.6 mile Town Mountain uphill time trail. Down the start ramp each of the 3 riders launched their bid for victory, chasing each other and struggling up 10% grades.
At the finish atop Town Mountain, Warner was 18 seconds faster than Beadle and 47 seconds up on Mahin, earning him the overall victory in 5:29:31 with Beadle 2nd and Hamish 3rd.