Bassett finishes 16th at Pro Road National Championships

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – The USA Cycling men’s pro road national championships were capped off with a title for Larry Warbasse on Sunday.

“Now I get to wear a really cool jersey the rest of the year so I’m really excited about that,” Warbasse said.

The 26-year-old completed the 100-plus mile course in just over four hours and 20 minutes. Not far behind Warbasse was Knoxville native Stephen Bassett, who finished 16th in front of his hometown crowd.

“If anybody was cheering for anybody else, they didn’t get to hear it because it was just so loud,” Bassett said. “It was crazy. I got goosebumps every time so that was really fun.”

The course streted from the old city to South Knoxville, just minutes away from where the Bearden High School alum grew up.

“A lot of those roads I’ve been riding since I was 10 years old so that pretty cool to get to do them at full speed with the closed course and police escort,” Bassett said. “It’s definitely nice when you know the terrain and know what to expect.”

The Tennessee college student turned his attention to his bike this year, taking part-time classes while joining the Silber Pro Cycling team in Canada. But it was back where it all started where the 22-year-old checked a dream off his list even though the pressure was more than he expected.

“I think sometimes when you have a hometown event it’s easy to get carried away and maybe get a little too nervous and not do your best race,” Bassett said. “I think I could have maybe done a few spots better in the sprint but I made that group and did what I could once I got there. It was a battle to get into that group.”

Bassett has only three days of rest before competing in Louisville, Ky. Thursday for the U-23 national championships. The pro road championships was Bassett’s 14th race this month and he still has three to go.

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