Phinney caps triumphant return with USA Pro Challenge win

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) Taylor Phinney won the opening stage of the USA Pro Challenge on Monday, sprinting away in the closing meters for his first victory since a devastating crash nearly ended his cycling career.

Phinney, a Colorado native, had just won the national time trial title in May 2014 when he started the road race a few days later. He was trying to avoid a motorcycle on a downhill section of the course when he crashed, breaking several bones and putting his future in doubt.

He returned to racing for the first time at the Tour of Utah earlier this month, finishing third on the opening stage. But on Monday, Phinney was back on top of the podium.

Kiel Reijnen was second, and Brent Bookwalter, Phinney’s BMC Racing teammate, finished third.

The second stage Tuesday is a 115-mile trek to Arapahoe Basin. The race concludes Sunday.