With more than 20 seconds left, the Colombian took the third stage of the Gila Tour, an individual time trial in which Torbjorn Andre Roed managed to maintain the overall lead; while among the ladies Emily Ehrlich won the segment and Austin Killips is the new leader.

The third episode of the 2023 Gila Tour (United States), a UCI America Tour race, took place on Friday, a 26-kilometre time trial for both men and women, starting and ending in the town of Tyrone. The course included two ascents of Little Burro Pass before going to the end on flat ground.

Walter Vargas flew and beat even the wind

As would happen in the women’s competition, in the men’s stage there was a crosswind, which added to the difficulty for the cyclists. Local Zach Gregg managed to be the first to sit in the hot seat for several turns (35m:12s), until fellow American Stephen Vogel passed him (34m:37m).

With just under 30 cyclists to hit the road and with the wind picking up, it was the turn of the Pan American champion of the specialty, the Colombian Walter Vargas, who improved the times at the intermediate points and crossed the finish line with a resounding 33: 47, valid for first place.

The overall leader and last rider on the road, Torbjorn Andre Roed, had good times and even finished second, but 21 seconds behind Vargas, clear winner of the stage. In the general Roed managed to maintain the lead, while Oscar Sevilla, fifth in the time trial, rose to fourth place.

Ehrlich signs a wide victory

On the same route as the men and the same crosswind, the women’s time trial was held, whose leading figure was the American Laurel Quiñones, who stopped the clock at 40:11, a record that was the best of the day during a high number of shifts.

Quiñones was in the hot seat until Emily Ehrlich appeared, broke all records and was the first to drop 40 minutes, reaching the finish line in 38:15, a time that would be unbeatable, despite the fact that there were still several races to compete. one of the overall favourites.

Few were those who achieved a time less than 40 minutes in the finish line; Maeghan Easler (39:24) and Austin Killips (39:43) were the only ones to do it and in that order they occupied the other two podium spots.

The best Latinas on the journey were the Colombian Diana Peñuela, who stopped the clock in 40:34, to finish in tenth place; the Mexican Marcela Prieto with 40:57 in the eleventh; while the Cuban Marlies Mejías was twelfth with 41:19.

In general, Marcela Prieto lost the lead after losing a lot of time to Austin Killips, the new leader of the classification.

Classification Stage 3 (male)

1. Walter Vargas (Team Medellin) – 33m:47s

2. Torbjorn Andre Roed (Above & Beyond Cancer) at 21s

3. Alex Hoehn (Above & Beyond Cancer) at 25s

General Classification (male)

1. Torjborn Andre Roed (Above & Beyond Cancer) – 6h:53m:56s

2. Drake Deuel (CS Velo Racing) at 28s

3. Alex Hoehn (Above & Beyond Cancer) at 59s

Classification Stage 3 (female)

1. Emily Ehrlich (Virginia’s Blue Ridge) – 38m:15s

2. Meaghan Easler (ROXO) at 1m:09s

3. Austin Killips (Amy D Foundation) at 1m:18s

General Classification (female)

1. Austin Killips (Amy D Foundation) – 7h:58m:45s

2. Emily Ehrlich (Virginia’s Blue Ridge) at 22s

3. Nadia Gontova (ROXO) at 1m:12s