Charlotte, NC - Joanne Kiesanowski of Team TIBCO/To the Top sprinted to 3rd place at the Presbyterian Hospital Invitational in Charlotte Saturday evening.
After a fast, aggressive 60-minute event, the race came down to a bunch sprint. "Everything was together on the last lap," Kiesanowski said. "Coming into the last set of turns, Sam (Schneider) came around me and I grabbed her wheel. She went hard through the turns and was still in first position coming out of the last one when she dropped me off. Unfortunately, the finishing straight is 350 meters long, and it's a bit too far for me to hold the sprint. It was a bit crazy in the finish, and some of our other girls got boxed in."
Despite the long sprint, Kiesanowski held on for 3rd behind winner Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Colavita-Baci) and veteran sprinter Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom).
"It was a good race, with a lot of attacks," Kiesanowski said. "The team rode great all night. We put in a lot of attacks and covered quite a few. If a move went that we didn't like, we shut it down."
Everyone on the squad was active, with Meredith and Amanda Miller both getting into moves, along with Megan Guarnier and Emma Mackie, who was rewarded for her efforts with several mid-race primes.
"It was a fun race," Kiesanowski added. "The crowds in Charlotte were huge, and the atmosphere was fantastic. It's great to be on the podium at a race like this."
Kiesanowski heads north to Pennsylvania to train with the New Zealand track team at the Lehigh Valley velodrome in preparation for the Commonwealth Games in October.
Team TIBCO ended up placing four riders in the top 13 for the race. Meredith Miller came through in 8th, while Brooke Miller took 11th and Megan Guarnier 13th.