Monterey, CA – Samantha Schneider of Team TIBCO/To the Top took a close 2nd place in the opening stage criterium of the Sea Otter Classic Thursday, with former world time trial champion Kristin Armstrong taking the narrow victory.
“It wasn’t really a sprint,” Schneier said. “It was really just mainly who could put out more power.”
“When they started sprinting, I thought Sam was going to have it but it was really more of a power finish than a really sprinter’s finish,” added teammate Meredith Miller, who finished 8th. “Sam started to sprint and open it, and I thought she was going to take it, but Kristin put in one last surge and just came around her at the finish line.
“The race was really aggressive today.” Miller continued. “It just wasn’t a course where people could go off by themselves and stay away. There was good, aggressive racing today, so hopefully that means people will continue to race hard in the next few days.”
The Classic continues Friday with a hilly road race on the roads near the Laguna Seca racecourse.
“If I can get through the hills, I’m definitely looking to get a stage win,” Schneider said. “We’re all definitely looking for a stage win. I’m riding pretty well. We’ll see. I’m hopeful we can get Meredith up in the overall.”
“The road race tomorrow is consistently hilly and pretty hard course,” Miller added, “so it should be a good race.”