By Daniel McMahon
Evan Murphy was second and Walton Brush took third.
Bezdek sprinted for the win from a select group of about a dozen riders. He had ridden top five much of the race, pedaling mostly conservatively and covering any attacks.
Coming into the bell lap, Bezdek was sitting top three. As the lead group approached the critical final hairpin, he made an aggressive move to the front, entered the tricky turn first, and sprinted all-out to the line.
“It feels so good to win,” Bezdek told cyclingreporter at the finish. “I had been thinking for the past year, ‘I need to come through that turn first and hold it.’”
Bezdek won the 2009 Red Hook, also in Brooklyn, and the 2011 edition in Milan, Italy.
With his third victory, Bezdek joins Dan Chabanov as the winningest racers of the Red Hook Crit. They have won the race three times each.
“So that means the score’s even with Dan Chabanov—so he needs to come to the next race,” Bezdek said.
Asked how this year’s victory compared with his two previous wins, Bezdek said:
“It gets better every time. I crashed out last time in Italy [in 2012], so I have had that to think about all winter.”
Top 10 results:
Complete results here.
All photos and video by Daniel McMahon for cyclingreporter.
Also see cyclingreporter’s short history of the Red Hook Crit on VeloNews.
Bezdek’s Cinelli race bike (his prize for winning the 2011 Red Hook Crit).
Bezdek before the race.
Miscellaneous snaps from the race:
Kacey Manderfield’s tools and chainrings.
The “Time Machine.”
Pre-race, from left: Gabe Lloyd, Kacey Manderfield, and Neil Bezdek.
Runners await their start early in the evening.
Local rider Scott Savory.
David Trimble prepares to give the Red Hook Crit a countdown.
Bezdek was the hot favorite but never seemed stressed and joked up until the very start.
Trimble gives last-minute instructions.
Lucas Brunelle rode within the field and recorded the race.
The pace motorcycle rider led the front group on his BMW.
The one tricky turn on the course: a hairpin.
The crowd awaits the podium ceremonies.
Bezdek quenches his winning thirst.