Redlands, California — Team Exergy had a strong showing at the March 22-25 Redlands Bicycle Classic in Southern California, with three top-three stage finishes and a run at the GC that was only ended by an untimely flat tire.
The three-day stage race began with a 5km prologue time trial. Morgan Schmitt came out swinging, finishing thir in the stage, which climbed 213 meters to its finish on Sunset Drive. The next day, Stage 1, was for the sprinters, and Fast Freddy Rodriguez rode his Felt F1 to a second-place in a circuit race in the city of Beaumont.
On Stage 2 Carlos Alzate rose to the occasion, finishing third in the bunch sprint at the end of the traditional Redlands Criterium. That finish earned Alzate the green points jersey.
Stage 3 saw stormy weather for the tough 157-kilometer Sunset Road Race. The good news for Exergy was that Alzate locked down the points jersey. The bad news was twofold: an untimely puncture ended Schmitt’s run at the overall, relegating him to 10th overall. And Rodriguez had a hard crash, breaking two ribs in the fall.
“This only give me energy to work harder,” Rodriguez said afterward. “Promise I’ll come back stronger.”