Wins all around
Tom Boonen’s brilliant victory Monday in Stage 2 of Paris-Nice punctuated a fantastic few days of racing for Zipp ®-sponsored pros.
Omega Pharma – Quick Step Cycling Team
- Boonen marked the team’s 21st victory of the young season – and his 100th career victory – by winning the sprint from a 21-rider leading group to end a cold and windy 185.5 km stage at Paris-Nice in France. Boonen had plenty of help from teammates Levi Leipheimer, Sylvain Chavanel, and Nikolas Maes with him in the lead group.
- Leipheimer was second in the general classification Monday, just 6 seconds back. The American’s Paris-Nice got off to a strong start with a third place in Sunday’s 9.4 km time trial.
- In Belgium over the weekend, Italian sprinter Francesco Chicchi collected his third victory of the year by winning Stage 1 of Driedaagse van West-Vlaanderen. What’s more, young talent Julien Vermote earned his first professional victory with an overall win in the three-day Flemish race. Vermote became the eighth Omega Pharma – Quick Step rider to win in 2012.
Team Exergy TWENTY12
- Fresh from her time trial win at the Tour of New Zealand, Kristin Armstrong won 19.4 km Merced Boosters Time Trial in California by 55 seconds over Canadian Clara Hughes. Armstrong, the defending Olympic time trial champion, also took first overall in the final classification at the four-day Merco Cycling Classic. “Everything came together, I already know I’m on the best equipment out there and it was up to me to put in a solid winter of training and show up to time trials well prepared, I felt good today,” she said.
California Berry Farms/Specialized
- 22-year-old Evan Huffman shocked the elite men's field at Merced Boosters Time Trial last week, covering the 19.4 km course 12 seconds faster than Patrick Bevin of Bissell Pro Cycling and 14 seconds faster than time-trial specialist Tom Zirbel of Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies.
- Rasmus Henning of Denmark and Nikki Butterfield of Australia completed the Zipp sweep of the elite men and women’s Saturday at the Abu Dhabi International Triathlon. Butterfield -- after falling far behind in the swim – rocketed to first on the bike on her way to a course record 7:00:22 in the 3 km swim, 200 km bike, 20 km run event. Henning conserved energy on the bike and used a strong run to pass fan favorite Faris Al-Sultan late on his way to win in a record time of 6:21:44.
- Marino Vanhoenacker of Belgium proved to be as adaptable as he is fast to win the altered-and-delayed Ironman® New Zealand – an event moved from Saturday to Sunday and shortened from full Ironman to a 70.3 (half) distance because of bad weather. Vanhoenacker used a strong run take the lead and win.
The diversity of wins stands out, as does the wide array of Zipp wheels and components that helped these athletes succeed. The Omega Pharma – Quick Step Cycling Team and Exergy TWENTY12 ride Zipp wheels, discs as well as Zipp’s bars, stems and seatposts. Exergy TWENTY12 also rides Zipp Tangente tires. This year Tom Boonen has shown a liking for the 404 Firecrest and the Service Course CSL bar, which with its new Super Short reach bend allows for a precision fit and easy access to control levers.
Kristin Armstrong rides the 808 Firecrest and Super-9 disc as well as the VukaBull carbon base bar, the VukaClip and VukaExtensions for her aero cockpit. Triathlete Nikki Butterfield went with an 808 Firecrest front and Super-9 disc rear as well as the Zipp VukaAero integrated aero bar.
Many athletes. Many choices of Zipp wheels and components.
Photo of Kristin Armstrong by Joe Savola