With the days ticking down to the Greenville Hospital System US Pro weekend the contenders are rolling into town. Spotted in the downtown Greenville bike shop, Carolina Triathlon, were Levi Leipheimer, Taylor Phinney and hometown hero George Hincapie.
Carolina Triathlon mechanic Brandon Lee helped Leipheimer out with some pre-ride bike adjustments.
“George, Taylor and Levi along with some BMC boys stopped by this morning to grab a few items before heading out to check out the course for the weekend. Levi needed a quick headset adjustment so I took care of that. We talked briefly about Leadville and they were off. ”
Several hours later Leipheimer returned and was looking for more mechanical assistance.
“Levi strolls in with his time trial bike in a box and requests a build as well as some restaurant recommendations. He spoke really highly of the Upstate and Greenville as a whole.”
Word is that Leipheimer was asking some Greenville locals about the CU-ICAR time trial course’s parcours. With several strong contenders for the victory in the race against the clock, course knowledge might earn a rider one or two much needed seconds. Last year’s champion Garmin Transition’s David Zabriskie said in the post-race press conference that he was able to stay in his aero-bars through all of the turns and roundabouts. The Radio Shack rider might be looking to emulate Zabriskie’s dare devil approach to navigating turns.
BMC’s Jeff Louder stood on the road race podium last year and is contesting just the road race. It’s 22-miles he knows well and with time to kill time before Sunday’s race he was going to take in a baseball game. Just stay away from the hot dogs Jeff. They might be tasty, but that isn’t racing food.
Taylor Phinney still had bandages on his arm and leg from his crash at the Tour de l’ Avenir. Hopefully these injuries won’t affect his chances this weekend.
If you’re looking to spot a pro the best bet is to ride in the Paris Mountain area. Every rider knows that’s where the race selection is made and they will be trying to get as familiar with that 2-mile climb as possible.