by Michel Ducas
August 11, 2006 - The 1st World Outgames held from July 29 to August 5 in Montreal, was a great display of sportsmanship with athletes competing for the love of their sport, not for glory or money. The Outgames, born out of the controversy with Chicago’s Gay Games, provided gay and lesbian athletes and participants of any sexual orientation with the chance to go beyond their limits. The international field included athletes all over the world including Australia, Germany, Israel, France, Switzerland, New Zealand and more.
Cycling was an important part of this sporting and cultural event – there was even ballroom and country dancing at the Outgames. Organizers didn’t have to look very far to find great venues for the road race events which were held on Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve (used for F1 and ChampCar racing), and they chose Little Italy for the criterium (the same venue was used at the Tour du Grand Montréal).
Age group categories were also divided into licensed and non-licensed riders for the three road events that were scheduled - a road race, an ITT, and a criterium.
The men’s road race on the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve was won by Jonathan Arsenault (18-29 years) and by fellow Canadian Michel Detry (30-39) - there was only a one-second difference between these two winners. In the women’s race, Caroline Théberge (18-29) and Geneviève Gauthier (30-39) were the winners as five riders finished with the same time of 1:07:58.
In the ITT, another Canadian, Reid Dalgleish, was the fastest of all men in the 30-39 age group winning with time of 12:51. As for the women, the fastest racer in the 30-39 age group was Geneviève Gauthier with a winning time of 7:03.
Gauthier’s medal was her second of three golds as she also won the criterium edging out Julie Madore at the wire. In the men’s crit, Michel Detry won his second gold at the finish line, over David Taillon, Stéphane Dodier and Reid Dalgleish.
Three TTTs were also held - men, women and mixed. The men’s event saw Canada win over Great Britain and France. Jonathan Arsenault, Michel Detry. Fernand Roseboom and David Taillon had a 1:33 lead at the line.
The women’s winning team was international, with two French, one Canadian and one British racer finishing ahead of two Canadian teams.
The mixed TTT had an all-American podium, with a Canadian twist. The winning team consisted of two Canadians and two Americans. Michael Bone, Steven Zendt, Daniel Coughlin and Antonietta Lembo won by 1:32 over their closest competition.
The MTB race was held at a great venue, the Parc du Domaine Vert in Mirabel, just a few clicks north of Montreal. Only four competitors showed up for all categories, meaning everybody ended up with a medal. Eric Spencer, from Valcartier, Que. won the 18-29 category, and USA’s Robert Dodd won the 40-49 age group over Canada’s Mike Wolfe. The only woman competing, Elizabeth Campbell from the USA, was also awarded gold.
For more info and complete results visit www.montreal2006.org