A few minutes later, race officials told her she had actually finished second in the 16-mile (25 km) race against the clock.
And by the time she was summoned to the podium for the post-race awards ceremony, the reigning national time trial champion was accepting the prize for third place.
The surprising turn of events was confusing for reporters covering the race and a major disappointment for Powers, who was using the race as a tune-up for the same event at next week’s USA Cycling Elite Road National Championships, which also take place in Bend, Ore.
Jessica Phillips (Team Lip Smackers), the apparent race winner, was not present for the awards ceremony. A member of her team reached her by phone but the Aspen, Colo., resident was unable to return in time for the podium ceremonies. That resulted in a $70 fine from the officials and forfeiture of the $150 she would have received for winning the race.
Alison Starnes (Team TIBCO) was listed as finishing second, two seconds ahead of Powers and 12 seconds behind Phillips. Race leader Evelyn Stevens (Webcor Builders) was listed as fourth, 15 seconds behind Powers.
USA Cycling officials blamed reporters for the confusion, saying the results being tabulated by hand were unofficial. No timing clock was visible at the finish line, leaving reporters to look over the shoulders of judges who were recording and manually calculating times from stopwatches.
Powers said she isn’t familiar with either Phillips or Starnes, having never before shared a podium with them.
“Jessica Phillips is super strong, so maybe she had an amazing ride today. It’s good for her,” Power said.
Phillips and Powers have competed head-to-head in time trials in two National Racing Calendar (NRC) events the past two months. Three weeks ago at the Fitchburg Longsjo Classic, Phillips finished 46 seconds behind Powers in an 8.8-mile (14 km) time trial that Powers won. At the Nature Valley Grand Prix last month, Phillips finished 13th, 51 seconds behind Powers, in a six-mile time trial. Powers was second that day, 13 seconds off the winning time of former world time trial champion Kristin Armstrong (Cervelo Test Team).
Thursday’s runner-up finish was Starnes’ third in a time trial this season but her first at an NRC event. At the Cyclepath Cyclery Calavares Time Trial in Sunol, Calif., in May, she lost by 10 seconds to Emily Zell (PROMAN Racing). At the NCNCA District Time Trial Championship in June in Sattely, Calif., she finished nearly two minute behind winner Molly Van Houweling (Metromint Cycling). Neither Van Houweling nor Zell are competing at the Cascade Classic.
Powers’ performance moves her into fifth overall, 1:21 behind Stevens, with three stages remaining. Friday is the 71-mile (114 km) Cascade Lakes Road Race. Saturday is an hour-long criterium in Downtown Bend, followed by Sunday’s 52-mile (84 km) Awbrey Butte Circuit Race.
Stage 3 Results - Women
1. Jessica Phillips (USA) Team Lip Smacker
2. Alison Starnes (USA) Team TIBCO
3. Alison Powers (USA) Team Type 1
General Classification After Stage 3 - Women
1. Evelyn Stevens (USA) Webcor Builders
2. Amber Rais (USA) Team TIBCO
3. Katharine Carroll (USA) Team TIBCO
4. Julie Beveridge (USA) Team TIBCO
5. Alison Powers (USA) Team Type 1
6. Alison Starnes (USA) Team TIBCO
7. Cath Cheatley (USA) Colavita Sutter Home presented by Cooking Light
8. Chrissy Ruiter (USA) ValueAct Capital Cycling Team
9. Meredith Miller (USA) Team TIBCO
10. Jessica Phillips (USA) Team Lip Smacker
Zirbel Takes Cascade's Race of Truth
Tom Zirbel (Bissell Pro Cycling) once again laid down the law in an Individual Time Trial. The best placed domestic rider in this year's Amgen Tour of California Solvang ITT, Zirbel proved once again to be the undisputed fastest chrono man in the domestic peloton as he was eleven seconds faster than BMC's Ian Mckissick and 44 seconds better than Oscar Sevilla (Rock Racing).
Stage 3 Results - Men
1. Tom Zirbel (USA) BISSELL Pro Cycling Team
2. Ian Mckissick (USA) BMC Racing Team
3. Oscar Sevilla Rivera (USA) Rock Racing
General Classification After Stage 3 - Men
1. Oscar Sevilla Rivera (USA) Rock Racing
2. Jeff Louder (USA) BMC Racing Team
3. Francisco Mancebo Perez (USA) Rock Racing
4. Ian Mckissick (USA) BMC Racing Team
5. Rory Sutherland (USA) OUCH Pro Cycling Team
6. Chris Baldwin (USA) OUCH Pro Cycling Team
7. Victor Hugo Pena (USA) Rock Racing
8. Ben Jacques-Maynes (USA) BISSELL Pro Cycling Team
9. Darren Lill (USA) Team Type 1
10. Jeremy Vennell (USA) BISSELL Pro Cycling Team
Photos: Courtesy Brian Hodes, VeloImages