(Photo: Emily Haddad/Rapha Cycle Club)
After 114 miles and over seven hours in the saddle, a Portland-based team was victorious in the Rapha Ladies Prestige Race held Saturday in San Francisco.
Fashioned after their Gentleman’s Race, the Rapha Ladies Prestige is an unsanctioned, unsupported race that features teams of six riders. Unlike traditional road races, this was more of a time trial and each team was required to finish the grueling course with all their riders together in order to be counted. This format means team unity and cohesion can often lead to more success than pure strength.
Out of 13 teams that entered, the winning team was fielded by Upper Echelon Fitness, a sports medicine and training center in northwest Portland. The team included Tina Brubaker (whom you might recall from her UPS bike delivery stint), Susan Peithman (a BTA staffer who is also training for the Reve Tour), Megan Chinburg, Elise Huggins, Alexandra Burton, and Amy Campbell. Other teams from Portland included Sorella Forte and Rapha’s own women’s team.
Megan Chinburg shared a recap of the race on her Facebook page. Here’s how he she describes the finish:
“… we rolled into the Rapha clubhouse, looking around for other teams. Seeing none, we began to smile with the knowledge that without any professional riders, with very little early season sunshine, and without any race support we proved to the ladies of California racing, that the women of Oregon’s Upper Echelon Fitness have something special. It’s not faster legs, and it’s not necessarily better training, it’s something much deeper and harder to develop: it’s the trust and faith in our teammates, it’s the understanding that we are in this together from the first turn of the wheel to the last, and together is the only way we could make it through.”
Way to go ladies! Thanks for representing Portland and Oregon so well.
Photographer Nick Kova has some great images of the action.