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Runner-up spots for Canadians on consecutive stages of the Valley of the Sun

Rally's Sara Bergen keeps second on GC after two stages

It’s been a good couple of days for Canadians at the John Earley Memorial Valley of the Sun Stage Race in Phoenix, Arizona, over the weekend, with Team TIBCO-SVB’s Alison Jackson taking second in a group sprint on Saturday’s 99.7-km second stage. This comes the day after Rally’s Sara Bergen earned second in the 22.53-km opening time trial.

Jackson was busy in Australia this January, taking 27th in the Santos Women’s Tour and 9th in the Herald Sun Tour.

On Friday, Bergen finished 13-seconds slower than reigning champion American Leah Thomas of UnitedHealthcare, while Jackson was in 9th place, 53-seconds back. Bergen’s compatriot and teammate Gillian Ellsay was 10th at +1:04.

It was another UnitedHealthcare victory on Saturday, with Lauren Hall hoisting the flowers. Thomas was sixth, on the same time as Hall and Jackson, and keeps her 13-second lead over Bergen, ninth on the day. Team TIBCO-SVB’s other Canadian, Lex Albrecht, claimed eighth.

The 26th John Earley Memorial Valley of the Sun Stage Race has been a good one for Canadians over the years. Genevieve Jeanson was champion three years running, while Ryan Roth earned the men’s title in 2016.

Besides the Canadians on Rally and TIBCO, Canucks Emma Lujan of Glotman Simpson CT Cycling and Dafne Theroux Izquierdo of Desjardins-Ford/CMU Cycling started on Friday.

The Valley of the Sun finishes Sunday with a criterium.

John Earley Memorial Valley of the Sun Stage Race Stage 2

1) Lauren Hall (USA/UnitedHealthcare) 2:36:00
2) Alison Jackson (Canada/Team TIBCO-SVB) s.t.
3) Yareli Salazar (Mexico/Swapit-Agolico) s.t.
8) Lex Albrecht (Canada/Team TIBCO-SVB) s.t.
9) Sara Bergen (Canada/Rally) s.t.

John Earley Memorial Valley of the Sun Stage Race GC
1) Leah Thomas (USA/UnitedHealthcare) 3:08:02
2) Sara Bergen (Canada/Rally) +0:13
3) Beth Ann Orton (USA/Point S Racing) +0:25
4) Alison Jackson (Canada/Team TIBCO-SVB) +0:31
10) Gillian Ellsay (Canada/Rally) +1:04