Emma White sprinted to an impressive victory on the opening day of the Sea Otter Classic. The Olympic bronze medalist took the win in the circuit race ahead of teammates Heidi Franz and Kristabel Doebel-Hickok to ensure it was an all Rally Cycling podium.
The result was a perfect opening for what promises to be two days of action-packed racing for the women in Monterey.
“Sweeping the podium and celebrating with teammates is such a special feeling,” White said from Laguna Seca Raceway. “The entire team did everything they could to make it fast and utilize their strengths. I’m so proud of everyone’s efforts.”
Joining White, Franz and Doebel-Hickok in the front group were Sara Poidevin and Holly Breck. Poidevin broke away with a rival and stayed clear until the final lap where White followed a counter-attack the final time up the climb. The 24-year-old then launched her sprint early and battled a strong headwind to finish two seconds ahead of the chasers.
In the end, the assistance from her teammates proved invaluable to White.
“Being surrounded by my teammates in the front group is such a reassuring feeling. I was so confident in what we would be able to accomplish.”
The Laguna Seca Raceway is famous for its corkscrew bend and the iconic corner featured heavily in today’s course.
“This is one of the most fun courses I’ve raced on. The climb on the backside was challenging, and the corkscrew descent was fast, technical and fun,” White added.
White hadn’t raced since the Joe Martin Stage Race in late August but still had plenty of gas in the tank for the late-season race.
“I’m happy to be back with the team after some time away. My legs were a bit shocked to feel that kind of pain again, but they quickly warmed up to it. It always feels good to be back with Rally Cycling.”
The team is back in action on Friday to take on a hilly road race course. You can find out more in our Sea Otter Classic preview.
Sea Otter Classic circuit race results
1 WHITE Emma – Rally Cycling 48:14
2 FRANZ Heidi – Rally Cycling 0:02
3 DOEBEL-HICKOK Kristabel – Rally Cycling ”
4 LANGLEY Emma – Team TIBCO – SVB ”
5 WILSON Moriah – San Francisco 0:03
6 POIDEVIN Sara – Rally Cycling 0:26
7 WARD Maddy – Team TIBCO – SVB 0:43
8 BRECK Holly – Rally Cycling 2:43
9 RAYNOLDS Matilda – Port Melbourne ”
10 POTTER Rebekah – Sisterhood of Cycling 3:39