Steamboat's Taylor Fletcher charges toward the finish line Sunday during the road race in the Steamboat Stage Race. The event wraps up Monday with a race downtown.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

Steamboat's Taylor Fletcher charges toward the finish line Sunday during the road race in the Steamboat Stage Race. The event wraps up Monday with a race downtown.

Charity hanging hopes on final day of Steamboat Stage Race

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— The difference was a matter of inches, but the result was huge. Steamboat Springs’ Amy Charity came up on the wrong end of a daring sprint to the finish line Sunday during the second day of the Steamboat Stage Race.

Now, she enters Monday’s final stage — a downtown criterium — in second place, three seconds off the lead.

“My plan is to win,” she said, considering all that will be at play on the final day. “I’m just not sure how. There will be a lot of factors.”

Charity was in a pack of four women charging toward the finish line Sunday at the end of a long road race. She narrowly lost the sprint, finishing third. Because they were all in one pack, she finished with the same time as the other racers, but Julie Emmerman’s late-race surge was just enough to win the stage and earn her a 10-second time bonus, erasing the lead Charity built in a Saturday time trial. That was enough to push Emmerman into the overall lead in the top women’s category.

Things can change in a hurry at the criterium, which will run around four blocks between Oak and Pine streets and Eighth and Fourth streets. There’s a one-time bonus looming large in the middle of the race as well as more for the first finishers.

That’s why Charity’s strategy is so complex yet as simple as “to win.” It could all change even midway through the stage.

“There will be a lot of thinking and calculating while racing tomorrow,” she said. “It’s definitely a chess match out there.”

Jesse Goodrich won the road race in the men’s top category, pulling away to finish 88 seconds ahead of any competitor before the bonus was added in. That leaves him in command of the general classification rankings, 47 seconds ahead of Josh Yeaton.

Steamboat’s Barkley Robinson had a strong day in the saddle and moved up to 11th place overall. Taylor Fletcher also raced well and is in 14th position.

Todd Lodwick is in third place, 29 seconds behind, in the senior men’s Category 3 division. He was fifth in the class in Sunday’s road race, just behind Steamboat rider Trevor Walz, in fourth, and ahead of fellow Nordic combined athlete Brett Denney, in sixth, and Steamboat’s Peter Kalmes, in seventh.

Monday’s racing begins at 7:30 a.m. Charity and the top women take to the course at 3 p.m., and the top men’s division goes at 4 p.m.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253 or email jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com

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