Column: Simi Hamilton, Noah Hoffman and Abby Mickey
The Aspen Times
Names, notes and numbers …
Tour of the Gila
Aspen native and former University of Colorado cyclist Abby Mickey is once again racing among the leaders at the annual Tour of the Gila in New Mexico.
Mickey, a former standout ski racer at Aspen High School, is riding for UnitedHealthcare in the huge stage race based in Silver City.
Mickey stood on the podium in Fort Bayard after the 75-mile second stage, the Inner Loop Road Race. She finished third in the stage behind only Canadian Jasmin Glaesser and Leah Thomas of the U.S.
Boulder-based Mara Abbott leads the overall women’s field. She’s a multiple winner at the Tour of the Gila, which includes amateur divisions as well as the pros.
The men’s leader entering the final stages is Lachlan Morton, the Australian who cycled through Aspen last summer as part of a five-day Boulder-to-Moab bike tour with his brother and fellow pro Taylor Phinney.
Morton, like Mickey, is a winner of the Iron Horse Classic road race from Durango to Silverton, held each Memorial Day weekend.
Abbott has won that 50-mile race over Coal Bank and Molas passes five times.
U.S. Ski Team
Aspen skiers Simi Hamilton and Noah Hoffman were officially nominated for the 2016-17 U.S. Ski Team recently. Hamilton, one of the top sprinters on the World Cup circuit, was nominated to the A team. Hoffman, a cross-country racer, was nominated for the B team along with Erik Bjornsen of Washington, who trains at Alaska Pacific University.
That’s number of Class 3A sprinters in Colorado who have posted 49-second times in the 400 meters this season, leading up to the Colorado State Track and Field Championships on May 19 to 21 in Lakewood.
Among the early times posted for the state-qualifying field, Aspen junior Sunday Abarca is in unique company. His 49.37 time recorded at the Central Warrior Invitational in Grand Junction is the second-fastest early 400 time behind only senior Josh Gregory of Eaton (49.32).
Lutheran senior Kent Harris, who owns the fastest 200-meter time in 3A, has run 49.82, and Jared Keul of Manitou Springs has a 49.83. Additional times from the weekend will be posted this week.
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The canceled 2020 race would have been the fourth running of the Colorado Classic, which each year has included stages in Colorado’s mountain towns before finishing with a final stage in the heart of downtown Denver. Snowmass had been scheduled to host a stage last summer for the first time.