The American Eagle Outfitters
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The American Eagle Outfitters® Tour of Pennsylvania presented by Highmark Healthy High 5® neared its end as the international U25 field entered onto the Pittsburgh streets in the race's penultimate stage five.
The peloton began what was considered an early sprint in pursuit of a break of six riders that cleared the peloton mid-race. The finishing circuits showcased Pittsburgh's newly built shopping district before an exciting finish outside of the American Eagle Outfitters world headquarters.
The pair of French-Canadians, David Veilleux and Keven LaCombe (Kelley Benefit Strategies-Medifast), shocked the Pittsburgh crowds when they emerged out of the final bend with a sizeable lead over one remaining rider from the original break away, American Phil Gaimon (Fiordifrutta).
"It feels great to have the leaders jersey and this was our plan since our meeting in the morning," admitted stage winner, Overall Race leader and Best Sprinter leader, David Veilleux. "We planned to have Keven and I jump together and surprise everyone in the last part of the circuits."
Both Veilleux and LaCombe crossed the victory line together, applauding one another for their cagey tactics that moved Veilleux into the American Eagle Outfitters yellow leaders jersey, two seconds ahead of the previous leader from South Africa, Christoff Van Heerden (Konica Minolta) and American Stefano Barberi (Z-Team).
The 91-mile stage gave the international U-25 field a more subdued ride as they entered into the City of Pittsburgh. Today's Stage 5 and Sunday's final Stage 6 are tied to the 250th anniversary celebration of the founding of the city of Pittsburgh in 1758 upon the conclusion of General John Forbes and the young George Washington's Forbes Trail Expedition.
The route followed a mostly rolling course with one short VisitPA.com KOM around mile 22, made obsolete by the event's leading climber from Boulder, Colo., Peter Stetina (VMG-Felt) who solidified his lead of the climber's competition during the previous stage.
The early miles also presented the sprinter with one last intermediate hot spot at mile 37, on the outskirts of Latrobe. American Chance Nobel (California Giant Berry Farms) scooped up the full points during his solo break away that gained nearly two minutes on the field.
A second breakaway of three riders let loose on the second half of the stage to include Australian Forbes Trail Most Aggressive Rider Dylan Newell (Praties), the Belgian Steven Van Vooren (Johan Brunyeel Cycling Academy) and South African Travis Allen (Konica Minolta). The trio was later joined by three more Americans, Sheldon Deeny (Sakonnet Technology), Caleb Fairly (VMG) and third place in today's stage, Phil Gaimon.
"It was pretty tough out there with really strong head winds," said Newell. "I thought they would let us hang out there for a while, but I didn't think it would stay away until the last lap of the finishing circuits."
The bike racing excitement will continue on the downtown streets of Pittsburgh tomorrow for the final Stage 6, 50-mile, action-packed criterium that will reveal the overall race winner of the American Eagle Outfitters® Tour of Pennsylvania presented by Highmark Healthy High 5®.
Click here for complete results. http://www.tourofpa.com/results.html
About the American Eagle Outfitters ® Tour of Pennsylvania, presented by Highmark Healthy High 5®: The world's richest cycling race for elite international cyclists under age 25. The six day, 450 mile stage race takes place June 24 to 29 from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh, featuring 20 teams of six riders each (ages 18 to 24) from around the world. The tour is sanctioned by the International Cycling Union (UCI) and will feature future stars of the Olympics and Tour de France. The race offers a cash prize list of $150,000 and will be televised on the Versus cable network, broadcaster of major cycling events including the Tour de France. The Tour of Pennsylvania is being organized by Pittsburgh 250, sponsored by American Eagle Outfitters ®, the leading lifestyle apparel brand among 15-to-25 year-olds and presented by Highmark Healthy High 5® a five-year, $100 million children's health promotion initiative of the Highmark Foundation. The initiative's goal is to improve the health of children and adolescents ages 6-18 by providing them with the tools and practices needed to live healthier lives by making informed choices. Highmark Healthy High 5® Finish Line Festivals (which are free and open to the community) will feature health and wellness expos, entertainment, games and prizes at each stage finish. The official AE Tour of Pennsylvania merchandise is being produced by American Eagle Outfitters®. The Tour of Pennsylvania is managed by Tour of PA, LLC, a partnership between ISM-USA of Pittsburgh and Pro Cycling Tour, LLC of Audubon, PA. For more information, visit http://www.tourofpa.com
About Pittsburgh 250:
The American Eagle Outfitters ® Tour of Pennsylvania, presented by Highmark Healthy High 5®, is an important part of Pittsburgh 250, the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the naming of the region in 1758. With the support of business, government and civic leaders from across the region, Pittsburgh 250 has set three goals: Improve awareness of southwestern Pennsylvania as a global leader in arts, science and quality of life through an integrated regional marketing effort; support the completion of lasting signature projects that connect the region's past to its future; and improve the region's competitiveness for future generations by encouraging grassroots participation in improving communities, attracting visitors, and living healthier lives.
For more information, visit www.tourofpa.com.
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