The Elevate-KHS Pro Cycling Team closed out their official 2017 season with the Tour of Alberta September 1-4, 2017. Beginning in Jasper, the athletes raced four solid days in and around Edmonton. The ambitions of the team was to set climbers Eder Frayre and James Piccoli up for the mountain top finish on the first stage , as well as to guide sprinter Alfredo Rodriguez in the sprint finales on the remaining 3 stages.
As the race began on stage 1, a breakaway formed and gained traction on the chasing field. The team was not represented in the move of 14, which in turn meant they would need to put consistent work at the front of the peloton to help bring the break back. The break began to splinter as the climb approached and James Piccoli was able to climb at the front, ultimately finishing 10th on the challenging stage.
Coming into stage 2, the team put all their resources into ensuring Alfredo Rodriguez would be set up for the sprint finish. As the finish line approached at the end of the hectic stage, Alfredo was in position for a podium finish. Travis McCabe of UHC touched a wheel and went down very hard right next to Alfredo, causing him to deviate and miss the podium. Thankfully he stayed upright but 5th was the best he could muster on the stage. Photos by Jonathan Devich.
Finishing up the final two stages, Nick Torraca was able to initiate the early breakaway on Sunday’s 4th stage. Connor Brown soon followed and remained in the move of 14 that lasted until the final lap. As the break became disjointed, James Piccoli bridged across and attacked the break to go up the road with one other rider, Canadian National Champion Matteo Del-Cin with 10K remaining. Although an exciting move, they were eventually brought back by the charging peloton and teammate Eder Frayre placed 10th on the day.
James Piccoli rounded out the tour finishing 9th in the General Classification.
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