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2019 Tour de Sask - Race Report

The Tour de Sask 2019 was an Omnium Stage race hosted by Cycledalia in Saskatoon, Sk.

Stage 1: 10km I.T.T.

Stage 2: Criterium

Stage 3: Road Race

HPL was well represented in Saskatoon over the weekend.  Terry and Mark working together in Cat 5, and Mike and Kelly doing the same in Cat3.

The weekend was well attended with close to 100 total riders participating across all categories. Alberta teams were well represented with riders in all categories including some very very strong riders mixed into the Cat 1-2-3 category with Kelly and Mike. 

The time trial was a quick 10km out and back course, relatively flat with only one small bump in the way.  We all know time trials, redline effort from the go.  It was fast, but put a little hurt into all of us.Terry with a 13th place and Mark with a 14th place.  Impressive times for them at just shy of 17 minutes.  Kelly with a 13th place at 14:22 and Mike with a stellar 7th place at 13:59.

Criterium is next up.  Beautiful pan flat course, 1 block square looping the city hall in Saskatoon.  Wide corners, light wind and perfect temperatures were going to mean some fast laps.  Cat 5 field was tough, and went off guns blazing....this split the field almost instantly.  Terry and Mark managed to work together with small groups and did very well for their first go at a Crit like this one. Terry with an 11th place finish and Mark with a 10th place.  I think it took Mark 4 hours to unpack his brain and determine what just happened.  It was like nothing he'd experienced before and the reaction on his face at the conclusion of the race was priceless.  Criterium is interesting racing to say the least.  Mike finished the Cat 3 crit in 16th place and Kelly with an 11th place result.  Cat 3 was mixed with the Cat1-2 racers, so it was a pretty spicy pace right from the gun as well.  6 riders separated themselves from the field and took off like nothing I've ever seen.  The remaining field stayed together through to the finish.  Average speed on Kelly's result was just shy of 44km/hr for an average speed.

Road race was held 90km North of Saskatoon at Batoche Historical site.  Winds were high, and temperatures were rising fast before the race started.  The course had 2 significant hills on each lap as you rode through the beautiful river valley.  The layout of the loops would mean for a virtual direct crosswind for 90% of the race.  Winds were 30kph gusting to 50kph resulting in some very difficult drafting strategies.  Temperature to start the race was 28 Celsius, with averages through the race around 33 Celsius.  It was hot.  Terry and Mark had impressive results with their 50km distance and managed to finish together in the same groupetto.  Terry in 13th spot and Mark in 14th.  Mike and Kelly's race was longer at 97km,  The separation was made at the 12km distance, on the hill.  Mike managed to keep in the lead pack, while Kelly dropped back and took charge of a Cat 3 groupetto.  One of the Alberta racers took a solo break away and managed to keep separated alone for the last 40km of the race for a dominant win.  Mike battled hard with the remaining riders in the lead pack and managed a very very impressive 9th place finish.  Kelly followed behind and finished with a 16th place finish.  It was hot, and that took a toll on all of us.  Some pretty zombie like faces by the time the day was over.

General Classification Results:

CAT5 (25 riders total)

Terry 11th

Mark 12th

Cat 1-2-3 (26 riders total)

Mike 7th

Kelly 11th

As always our team would not be possible without the generosity and support of our sponsors. Thank you for everything! Varsity Dental Group Spoke n' Hot Women's Cycling SpokesMen Masters Cycling

Author: Kelly Chimilar

Photo Credits: Bob Holtsman and Nina Henry

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