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Written by Monte Hamilton
Sunday, 11 March 2007

March 11: Central Valley Classic California Tower District Criterium

Henk Vogels added a storybook finish to the Bentley?s Central Valley Classic when he won the Tower District Criterium in Fresno, Calif. Nearly four years ago, Vogels crashed hard on a 60 mph descent, shattering his ankle and breaking his neck in an accident that nearly took his life. But that was all forgotten Sunday when the 33-year-old Australian roared down the finishing straight to give Toyota-United its second win at a National Race Calendar event in as many weeks.

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Henk Vogels? winning margin was comfortable enough to allow him to do a victory salute at the finish line. Chris Baldwin celebrated Vogels? win more than he did his own third place overall finish.
photo Veronika Lenzi photo Veronika Lenzi
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The Tower District criterium podium (from left): second-place finisher Alejandro Acton (Colavita/Sutter Home presented by Cooking Light), Vogels and third place finisher Ricardo Escuela (Successful Living.com presented by Parkpre USA).
Baldwin?s performance in Saturday?s time trial assured him of a spot on the final podium.
photo Veronika Lenzi photo Veronika Lenzi
The final overall podium (from left): second-place finisher Rory Sutherland (HealthNet presented by Maxxis), winner Ben Jacques-Maynes (Priority Health Cycling Team) and Baldwin. Chris Wherry did his share of the work, helping pull back several breaks, then cranking up the pace for the final lap leadout.
photo Veronika Lenzi photo Veronika Lenzi
Justin England (left) and Stefano Barberi helped keep the pace high throughout the race to diminish opportunities for breakaways. Caleb Manion made his way into both of the day?s breakaways before the race came back together with four laps to go.
photo Veronika Lenzi
photo Veronika Lenzi
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Chris Baldwin did his part, staying out of trouble and finishing in the field to secure his third place overall. Burke Swindlehurst seemed relaxed before the start of the final stage of the three-day race.
photo Veronika Lenzi
photo Veronika Lenzi
Protecting Henk Vogels (far left) was the name of the game in the first half of the race for Caleb Manion (right) and Chris Wherry.
photo Veronika Lenzi

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 16 January 2008 )
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