Three in a Row in Loudon Classic for Narbonne
Shane Narbonne Wins the 94th Annual Loudon Classic
Shane Narbonne already holds the record for being the youngest winner in Loudon Classic history. Last year, the 27-year-old native of Tyngsboro, Mass., set a new record with his fifth Loudon Classic title. In Saturday's 94th running of the 20-lap Loudon Classic, Narbonne made a little more history, becoming only the second rider in history to win it three times in a row.
"This means a lot. I've been coming here since I was a little kid. I used to ride here when I was 11 before they would even let me race," said Narbonne, who won his first Classic in 2009 at the age of 18. "I was the youngest one to ever win it and now winning it three times in a row and six times overall - it just feels awesome."
Christian Cronin (Loudon, N.H.) picked up his sixth podium finish in his last seven Loudon Classic starts, while Scott Greenwood (Dunbarton, N.H.), a two-time Classic winner, finished third. Sam Greenwood (Dunbarton) and Alex Guilbeault (Litchfield, N.H.) round out the top-five.
"The first part of the race I really felt good, the bike was on rails, but I could feel Shane coming," said Cronin, who led the first seven laps before Narbonne passed him for the lead on Lap 8. "I just didn't have enough to hold him off, especially after the restart."
A late red flag brought the field back together for a restart with three laps to go. Typically a race ends for any red flags after the halfway point, but given the significance of the Classic, the race was seen to its completion.
That meant one more crack at Narbonne, who had nearly a full frontstretch lead when the flag came out. And while he lost his lead heading into to Turn 1, the veteran pilot showed his superiority of the 1.6-mile road course, grabbing the lead late on Lap 18 and never giving it up again.
"I started the race in the sixth row (out of seven), which made me nervous, but I was able to chip away and gain positions," Narbonne said. "I just tried to find my line and was able to pass Christian on that late restart and hold on for the win. It was a good day."
Douglas Ouellette won the Amateur Loudon Classic, while Anthony Furia and Timothy Barrows Jr. earned respective second- and third-place podium finishes.