Ken Hanson celebrates his first national championship as a pro
Photo C. Jon Devich
A picture perfect lead-out by Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies delivered Ken Hanson to the top of the podium at the US Pro Criterium Championship this weekend in Grand Rapids, MI., capturing the powerful sprinter a gold medal and the honor of wearing the stars and stripes champion's jersey for the next 365 days.
"I couldn't be happier for this team today - I have been wanting to win this jersey for years, and in 2010 I missed it by inches. This year, the difference was simple - the team supporting me. This jersey truly belongs to all of us," said Hanson. "I feel honored to wear it for them."
The 30-year old Hanson has won a national title at every level of his career, winning both the collegiate (2005) and amateur elite (2008) US Criterium Championships. The win in Grand Rapids is his first national championship as a professional, and his fourteenth victory for Optum p/b KBS in 2012.
"I've been fortunate to have a lot of success in my first year with Optum p/b KBS, but this win definitely goes down as the best," said Hanson. "It was a perfect display of team work, and the jersey was a top priority for me this year. It's something every American wants to win. To share the victory with such a great group of guys, great directors, mechanics and staff is truly special."
See more on Ken's latest big win and read Jonas Carney's perspective at optumprocycling.com
1. Ken Hanson (Santa Barbara, Calif./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)
2. Brad Huff (Springfield, Mo./Jelly Belly Cycling Team)
3. Bradley White (Holland, Mich./UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team)
4. Eric Young (Boulder, Colo./BISSELL Pro Cycling Team)
5. K Frank Pipp (Boulder, Colo./BISSELL Pro Cycling Team)
6. Alexander Candelario (Reno, Nev./Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)
7. John Murphy (Asheville, N.C./Kenda 5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder)
8. Andy Jacques-Maynes (Watsonville, Calif./Kenda 5 Hour Energy p/b Geargrinder)
9. Luke Keough (Sandwich, Mass./Team Mountain Khakis p/b SmartStop)
10. Andrew Dahlheim (Austin, Texas/BISSELL Pro Cycling Team)