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Ebson, Shea conquer Mt. Washington by bicycle

PINKHAM NOTCH – A man from Denmark and a woman from Massachusetts won the grueling Mt. Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclimb yesterday in cool, windy conditions.

John Kronborg Ebson, 25, a professional racer from Denmark who has been living in Taiwan, won the 7.6-mile race in a time of 52 minutes, 53 seconds. Marti Shea, of Marblehead, Mass., cycled to victory in 1:06:01, becoming the first woman to win the race four times.

A total of 635 cyclists competed. They started the course at the foot of the Auto Road and finished at the 6,288-foot summit of the highest peak in the northeastern United States. Some cyclists have called the race more difficult than the steepest climbs in the Tour de France.

Ebson stayed just behind previous winner Cameron Cogburn, 28, of Arlington, Mass., for most of the first five miles, then pulled away before the sixth mile to beat Cogburn by 57 seconds.

Shea beat her closest challenger by nearly eight minutes. Silke Wunderwald, 42, of Hopkinton, R.I., came in second in 1:13:55.

It was Shea’s 11th overall win on the Mt. Washington Auto Road after winning Newton’s Revenge – the annual July climb – seven times.

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