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Bremerton's Chloe Dygert Owen finished second overall while Heidi Franz of Bainbridge Island earned her first UCA stage win

Bainbridge Island’s Heidi Franz won stage two of the Tour of the Gila in New Mexico over the weekend while Bremerton’s Chloe Dygert Owen finished second overall in the UCI women’s classification.

Day three of the tour, which ran from May 1-5, saw Dygert Owen (Sho-Air Twenty20) win the sprint and move into second place in the general classification, just 14 seconds back of race leader Chapman. Dygert Owen also led the Best Young rider Classification, just ahead of Franz. Dygert Owen then came out and won stage four Saturday.

Dygert Owen finished 1:07 behind overall winner Australian Brodie Chapman of Team TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank in the final 65.9-mile stage race Sunday.

“I just had to really work on making sure I got over the climb today, and I did,” Dygert Owen said in a post-race interview at tourofthegila.com. “Brodie’s just so strong she was able to keep that gap and got the win. This race is super good fitness for Tour of California. Just to see how positive we all came out of this and how strong we are as at team, I’m really looking forward to California.”

Dygert Owen ultimately finished with the Best Young Rider and Sprint Leader jerseys as well. Franz was second in the young rider class.

Last Friday’s win for Franz was the first professional stage top-podium finish for the up-and-coming cyclist who races for Rally UHC Cycling.

Franz broke away with Jasmin Duehring (Sho-Air Twenty20) as the pair built a lead of more than a minute over the leader Chapman with Duehring taking over the overall lead. Franz used her power to best Olympic bronze medalist Duehring to the finish line in 3 hours, 27 minutes, and 33 seconds.

Franz, who joined Rally UHC in 2018, was coming off a pre-Gila minicamp in Santa Fe, N.M. and said in a tweet from her account she was thrilled to earn her first UCI win.


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