KREM Classic Winners - 01/03/13 02:28 PM
The Race Promoter told us that the instability in the Belize Cycling Association would not throw a damper on the race.
It didn't, and 7New caught up with the winners from all 3 categories when they crossed the line.
Here's what they told us about the level of competition this year:
"Tell us about that victory."
Tarique Flowers - 1st Place, Juniors
"Amazing, I ran the entire race. I ran all day, punished, thought about the win, and it was tough. But then again, that's cycling. Pain is temporary; pride is forever."
"How far did you lose the main pack?"
"It was from like about mile 46 or so."
"Is this your first win?"
"How many races have you competed in?"
"It's one year now since I've been racing. This is my first year."
Giovanni Lovell - 2nd Place, Juniors
"I wasn't chasing my team mate because I knew he had it, and I just made the right move by Ladyville. I just planned to run by myself."
"What team do you guys ride for?"
"And sir, is this your first race?"
"No, it's my third, but it's the second time that I came in second."
Justin Chavarria Jr. - 3rd Place, Juniors
"It was a hard race, but I kept on fighting for like 40 miles. I stayed at it, but..."
"I know that the first 3 people were ahead of the main group. How did you maintain a distance from them?"
Justin Chavarria Jr.
"Well, I just told the guys who were with me to let us keep on working. The guy ended up getting weak, and I thought that I had to continue on my own. That's how I ended up reaching here by myself."
"Did you think about mounting an attack against the first and second place?"
Justin Chavarria Jr.
"I said to myself, 'Whatever I get, I get. If I get first, second or third, I am satisfied.' At least I tried my best."
Shalini Zabaneh - 1st Place, Female
"It was an excellent race. I had all the factors in my favor. I love the win when it's hard. I know that I am the strongest, and when the wind is blowing, I can put it down."
"We saw that Ms. Kaya, who came in first last year, she was third. How far behind was she? How competitive was her ride as compared to yours?"
"Kaya definitely improved from September 2010. She's improved really fast. She trains hard, and I know that. I just had to train harder, and work with the other cyclist. I was able to let her do some work instead of just sitting behind me. Then, she was weakened, and that's how I was able to get away."
Patricia Chavarria - 2nd Place, Females
"Well, It was really difficult because at the beginning, I was getting dropped. So, at the end, I put myself into it, and that I had to do well and have faith in myself. That's what I did."
"I saw that you were not a very far distance behind the first place. Tell us what that last couple hundred yards were like?"
"Well, Shalini helped me to get the break away, so we worked together. The stronger one obviously had the win, so she was the stronger one."
"I know that your father was a cyclist, and your brother placed third. You guys are continuing the tradition in the family."
"Do you think that he would be proud of you?"
"Yes, he's proud of me. At the beginning, he told me to go as hard as I could, but you know, I'm afraid. So, at the end I decided that I had to go. So, he's happy with my performance."
Kaya Cattouse - 3rd Place, Females
"The race rode hard. I countered everything one after the next. One of them ended up getting away from me, and that's how it goes sometimes."
"So, tell us about those last couple moments when that rider escaped from you."
"Well, she never really attacked. She went for a station prize, and when she peeped back and realized that nobody was on her wheel, she started to drive it. I was watching it and waiting until she reached a good distance to where I could jump cross, but two of my legs were locking up. So, I finished out the race as best as I could. Shalini made the right move when she jumped across to Chavarria. I couldn't get on her wheels so, I chased from there to the line. But, it was a nice race. We ride hard, and that's how it goes sometimes. Like I told Ms. Sharon, we're humbled in winning; we're humbled in losing."
Hon. Santino "Santi" Castillo - Manager, Team Santino's
"Well, to be honest, I didn't even think that we'd riding the New Year's Classic, at least, I didn't think that there was going to be a Team Santino's. I had decided to throw in the towel after the Cross Country, and when December 1 came, and Marlon, Greg Lovell and Darnell Barrow still didn't have a team, these boys have been like sons to me. So, I couldn't leave them out in the cold, so I rebuilt the team around them again, including Leroy Cassasola, and I got the two rookies, Joel Borland and David Henderson Jr. We started training putting it all together for this race, which give us great impetus moving forward for the rest of the 2013 Season."
David Henderson Jr. - 1st Place, Seniors
"We were just trying to reach as fast as we could trying to count it mile by mile, until we realized that we got here, because there is nothing guaranteed."
"Is this your first win in the Cycling Classic?"
David Henderson Jr.
"Well, I've won smaller races, but this is the biggest win I've had since coming to the seniors."
Greg Lovell - 2nd Place, Seniors
"The finish was really excellent. I can't complain. Right now, I'm kind of speechless because we really did a good job, and we didn't expect it. We all performed excellently, and we all have the strength. We all had a good team work, and we put it together excellently."
"How did your team mates help you from the start to the finish?"
It's all communication. We all talk to each other, and coach each other throughout the race. We all pushed each other. That gave us the motivation to push really hard. We want to get back together, so the spirit was there."
"Is this your first win?"
"No, I got second before. It was excellent. David he got into the history books, and I am happy for him. It's also historic for the team because it's the first time we got first, second and third."
Darnell Barrow - 3rd Place, Seniors
"The team is filled with a lot of talented riders. So from that perspective, I expected the team to ride well today."
"Tell us about the break away from the main pelathon, and how you guys maintained that lead."
"Well, we just tried to maintain riding to the front of the race, making sure that there was any gap that widened to far that we couldn't bridge or get across."
The winner of the elite race David Henderson Jr. is the son of Police commissioner David Henderson. He finished the race in four hours and five minutes, well off the record of three and a half hours.