Yesterday it was Australian Karl Menzies of UnitedHealthcare taking the win in the sixth criterium of the Speed Week series. Today in Sandy Springs, Georgia it was still a UnitedHealthcare rider, however it was Jake Keough taking his second win of the week. Menzies wasn’t to be denied a podium spot on the day and finished in second place with Fly V rider Aaron Kemps in third.
The Sandy Springs loop was a “P” shaped course with six turns which kept all the riders on their toes.
“It was kind of a crazy circuit,” Keough said. “It’s really twisty with one good hill. There were a lot of attacks today. All our guys were up there the whole day.”
And just like at Dilworth, it wasn’t until the closing laps that the action heated up. Andrew Pinfold and Adrian Hegyvary – who was also a key aggressor in yesterday’s Dilworth Criterium – were part of a dangerous six-rider break. And like yesterday, this forced OUCH/Bahati Foundation to the front.
When the field was close to catching the break with two laps to go, Hegyvary took off solo, keeping the pressure on and giving time for Pinfold to slot in behind Clarke in the lead-out train.
On the last lap Menzies took Keough through the last corner and Spartanburg criterium winner Keough came off his wheel for the sprint win. Menzies kept going and narrowly held off Kemps for the second step on the podium.
“The only thing that could’ve made it better is if Pinner had held on for third,” Menzies quipped.
UnitedHealthcare held a nearly 800-point lead in the overall team competition at Speed Week coming into today’s race. Taking the top two spots in the finish while riding aggressively throughout easily sealed the team competition win.
Keough had already wrapped up the U25 individual competition coming into the finale. Taking the win merely put an exclamation point on the title.