Officials have revised results for the 2010 SRAM Tour of the Gila to restore Dave Zabriskie to the final overall podium, bumping Phil Zajicek back down to fourth, race director Jack Brennan told VeloNews on Tuesday.
The adjustment concludes, presumably, results confusion that began as early as the second stage of the five-day New Mexico stage race and led to an unusual double-podium ceremony ceremony after the final stage on May 2 (see video below).
On the wind-blown second stage, Zajicek (Fly V Australia) and Zabriskie (DZ Nuts) were in a group of two dozen riders that was delayed by a crash in the final kilometer. Zajicek crossed the finish line ten seconds ahead of Zabriskie, but officials gave all members of the group the same finish time because of the crash — a decision that V Australia director Henk Vogels protested.
Zajicek told VeloNews on Tuesday that the adjustment was an “unfortunate” stain on an otherwise great race.
“It’s too bad. I think I deserved to be third. But I’m 100 percent focused on Tour of California and I’m sure Zabriskie is, too,” he said.
The two Z’s started the final stage, the storied Gila Monster, separated by 10 seconds on GC. Zajicek (who won the stage in 2009) managed to get away from Zabriskie in the final kilometer and beat the U.S. TT champ to the line by … nine seconds.
Confusion reigned after a timing official informally told podium organizers that Zajicek had taken enough time to overtake Zabriskie, leading to a re-do of the podium ceremony. Later, officials corrected that, but Vogels reminded them of his protest of the stage 2 finish, which apparently hadn’t been formally resolved. The disputed 10 seconds that Zajicek took on stage 2 would have moved him back into third.
Some timing sheets had stayed on a New Mexico tourism department bus that was driven to Albuquerque after the race, further delaying the resolution, Brennan said. But in the end officials stood by their stage 2 decision and brought Zabriskie back up to the podium, at least on paper.