Updated: Tuesday, 19 August 2014 13:20 | By Agence France-Presse

Reijnen wins first stage of USA Pro Challenge

American Kiel Reijnen powered his way to victory after an aggressive day of racing in the opening stage of the fourth annual USA Pro Challenge.

Reijnen wins first stage of USA Pro Challenge

Kiel Reijnen celebrates his victory as Alex Howes (R) takes second place in the opening stage of the USA Pro Challenge in Aspen on August 18, 2014 - by Doug Pensinger

Reijnen, of the United Healthcare team, completed the 98 kilometre (61 mile) stage in two hours, 26 minutes and 35 seconds on Monday, finishing just ahead of fellow American Alex Howes.

Reijnen and Howes (Garmin-Sharp) overtook leader Spain's Javier Megias during the final stretch of the race. Reijnen then edged out Howes at the finish, while Belgian rider Ben Hermans finished third. Megias finished in sixth place.

American Carter Jones placed fourth while Matthew Busche of the US rounded out the top five.

The first stage included three 35 kilometre laps that included 701 metres of climbing per lap. The race started and ended in downtown Aspen and took the riders through Snowmass Village and McLain Flats.

Tuesday's 168-kilometre second stage starts in Aspen and will finish with a sprint through the town of Crested Butte and then a steep climb up to Mount Crested Butte.

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