- Lakata marked out the detour where the riders were sent off course. Courtesy SRM
- The Powerline climb on the return is where Alban Lakata put the hammer down and pulled away from his closest competitors, Christoph Sauser and Jeremiah Bishop. Courtesy SRM
- The powerhouse Lakata was able to put down an average of 300 watts for the final three kilometers of racing, after having already led the race for 6 1/2 hours. Courtesy SRM
- Lakata put down 516 watts at the summit of Columbine, averaging 311 watts. His heart rate stayed consistent, averaging 156 bpm. Courtesy SRM
Topping the day’s power output was Austrian Alban Lakata. His SRM Training System power data provides insight into just how much horsepower there was at the front of the race.
“I knew it was going to be the toughest Leadville field in history,” said third-place finisher Jeremiah Bishop. “Two highly decorated World Champions — Alban Lakata and Christoph Sauser — would be definite favorites. But many other tough men from around the world ascended on the high-altitude mining town for a legendary showdown.”
It certainly was legendary, with the top three within a second of each other for the majority of the race and an accidental detour that led all leaders on an incorrect route.
Lakata came in second in 2011 to Todd Wells and returned this year to wrap up his “unfinished business” with the race.
Even though he won the race, he expects to return after not fulfilling his own expectations. “It was a race on my to-win list,” said the Team Topeak Ergon rider, “but I also wanted to beat the course record, but not this time so I’ll have to come back again… It’s an off-road race and it’s not good that a roadie has the course record in this race.”
The Austrian siad that he managed to pull away on the Powerline climb, when he really put the hammer down. His power reading shows an average power output on the climb over 310, with his heartbeat steady and never spiking, averaging 161 through the climb.
“I felt amazing on the morning of the race,” Lakata said after he finished. “It felt like my legs were just flying. It is an amazing feeling to have won.” Expect his win to only solidify his determination to return and win again, as well as blow away the current course record.