Wow, that went fast! Two more great weeks of racing are in the books. Very happy to say we’ve had so much good news since our last update we are hard pressed where to start! But, in the interest of our beloved I.T. guru, we will be sticking to chronological order. We can’t thank you all enough for your support this year. Our goal was to put together a true ‘cross dream team, and reporting results like these let us know that we are certainly on the way! We are quite proud of everything this team has accomplished, and feel very positive about our future; hope this message finds you all feeling the same way. We are charging up the standings; take a look at the USICX!
Beacon Cross NJ 10/29/2011 UCI-C2
Beacon Cross was literally so cold that there is little media record of the race even having taken place. We could not find more than just a few photos from the brave souls that were willing to endure the 34 degree temps and pouring rain to document the race. Despite the horrid conditions, the day got off to a great start with Katherine Shields bringing home the best result of her young career with a 5th place finish in the UCI Pro women’s field! Congratulations, Katherine! The men’s race literally started with a splash…and a freezing cold one at that. Just a few turns into the race, Jerome chose a line just off Travis’ wheel to the right,and that line took our racers through 2 feet of standing water. Travis said, “I felt that water hit and my breath was gone, I was so cold. Jerome got “all of” that same puddle, and there was nothing he was going to be able to do”. Soaked all the way through his skinsuit, Jerome’s race turned into a sprint to the van, hoping to warm up before hypothermia set in. Luckily, he made it back safely, got the feeling back into his body, and was able to save something for day two. Meanwhile, Travis battled at the front of the race and was able to finish 3rd, picking up even more UCI points as he continues to climb the standings. Great job, T-Nasty! Veteran Adam put his his trusty skills to good use, navigating through the mucky course while overcoming a few nagging mechanical issues. The consummate pro, Adam was still able to pick his way through the field for another top 10 finish.
HPXC NJ 10/30/2011 UCI-C2
Day two in NJ brought a great showing by our three Pro men in Jersey’s epic conditions: 4 inches of snow dropped on the course overnight, and with the temps rising just above freezing through the day, the recipe was made for some classic muddy cross conditions. All three guys proved up for the challenge as they joined the lead group from the gun, each taking a turn pushing the pace. Though the conditions made the race a battle of attrition for everyone, a poorly-timed crash put Adam into chase mode, while Jerome found himself with a chance for the the win with his best ride of the season so far. Bolstered by a successful finish the day before, Travis rode a steady and strong race yet again to hold a spot on the podium. Adam was able to rejoin his mates in the lead chase group, Travis pressed on for 4th, and Jerome kept the pressure on the eventual winner all the way to the finish for 2nd place. So,Travis joined Jerome on the podium for the 3rd time in 4 races, and climbed up to his fourth UCI podium in a row; Adam’s charge got him all the way back to 7th. Three racers in the top 7 at a UCI race? Somebody pinch us! All on a day when so much can go wrong. Great job, fellas.
Cincy3 UCI Weekend UCI C2/C2/C1 11/4-11/6/2011
The three-race weekend in Cincinnati, OH brought many of the top ranked riders in the US, and with Sunday’s UCI C1 status just about all of the top names in the sport were in town. This provided a great chance for Travis to see if his building form would be good enough to challenge the best in the country. Friday, Travis got a great start and rode a solid race, starting a string of what would be three straight top 10 rides in the stacked fields. Despite a very early bike change that forced him to chase from the back of the field on the first lap, he went to bed Friday night feeling like he could ride with the best, and would be ready to do so on day two. Saturday came, and with it, the best ride of Travis’ career to date. He established himself early at the front of the race, and despite being surrounded by some big players, he handled himself very well, doing his part to join the chase of Ryan Trebon and Tim Johnson, alongside Jeremy Powers, Jamie Driscoll and Ben Berden. Perhaps feeling a bit too eager early on, he slipped just a bit off the pace with 4 laps to go, but rebounded later with the fastest closing lap of the day’s race, nearly catching Jamie Driscoll as the race came to the line. Sunday brought the C1 event and a whole new set of challengers hungry for the additional prize money and UCI points offered. After two hard days of racing, Travis was tired, yet still on the form of his life. He started fast and held on to the lead group for the early portion of the race, still hungry for a top 5 finish from the day before. He worked very hard to try to tow the chase group up to the top 5 riders; perhaps his ambition got the better of him as many of the riders in his group were riding with fresher legs from sitting out the first two days. As he simply put it, “I ran out of gas”, and eventually came home 10th for the day. This result helped him to secure a nice pay day and some valuable C1 points towards his starting position at the nationals. He will get another chance to battle the nation’s best next week, rejoining teammates Jerome and Adam at the USGP in Louisville, Kentucky.
Kudos to Master’s riders Bo Colbert and Chip Duckett on some great rides in the national-level fields. Bo took back-to-back wins in the Masters Cat 3’s, while Chip took 2 top 20’s in the Master’s Elite field. Great job, men! Sadly, Chip fractured his ankle practicing a tricky turn in warm-ups for Sunday’s race. We would like to wish Chip a speedy recovery!
Adam’s Race! The 21st Cyclesmart Invitational UCI C2 11/5-11/6/2011
It is hard enough to be one of the top ‘cross racers in the country, there’s no doubt about it. However, not only does Adam Myerson compete at the top level, he also puts hours and hours of his time and effort into contributing to the sport. In addition to mentoring racers,encouraging the participation of men and women of all ages and ability levels through his Cyclesmart organization, he also puts on one of the country’s best run ‘cross events. This weekend was no exception.
Saturday started fast and furious, and despite a week of hard work and preparation for this event, Adam summoned the energy to join Jerome at the front of the race, battling for the wheel of Shimano Series Leader Justin Lindine. However, a miscue by Lindine caused the lead group to split early, allowing Luke Keogh, our boys’ MK road teammate, to slip up the road with two willing participants. Chasing hard was Adam, Jerome, Jeremy Durrin and leader Lindine . Though a second bobble dislodged Adam from his teammate, he was able to use what he described as “some pretty good legs, considering…” to hold on for seventh, easily able to stave off the riders unable to match the day’s early pace. Ahead, Jerome was able to take second in the field sprint, ending up 5th and just ahead of Justin Lindine. The stage was therefore set for a battle on Sunday, with all 7 riders from Saturday’s initial lead group feeling like Sunday could be the day for a win. Sunday came, and so did the fireworks! Check out some great video of the race on:
One gets a real feel for the type of skill and fitness it takes to battle for a UCI win, watching Jerome and Adam race shoulder to shoulder in the 6 man lead group that formed on the second lap of the race. While Adam did very well to cover the initial accelerations, Jerome pulled out all the stops, several times going for broke with some daredevil attacks through the sand pit, using his fantastic set of skills to try to gain a gap over savvy sprinter Luke Keogh. The dynamic of the race was pure irony for Jerome and Adam, who spend their road season working hard to lead Luke out so he can deliver the goods in the big criteriums. But it’s ‘cross season, and therefore it’s every man for himself. As the lead riders plotted to get away, the race provided spectators with a very entertaining battle. Luke got the help he needed from his companions in the lead group, and the race ended in a three man sprint. Exhausted from his numerous break away attempts, Jerome finished a strong 3rd, with Adam just behind in 6th, extending his streak of UCI top 10’s to a season high 5 and counting.
NCCX #4 Salisbury, NC (NE) 11/6/2011
Boom goes the Dynamite! (To quote an anonymous friend) Rob Moran got the winning started with a big solo ride in the Master’s 45+, and from there the SS/MOB victories just kept rolling in. Emily and Katherine put an exclamation point on their 1st and 2nd positions on the NCCX series by finishing 1st and 2nd in their home town race, riding smoothly shoulder to shoulder through their favorite training grounds; this less than 24 hours after earning All-region honors in their cross country (running) meet for Lees McRae college! Congrats are also in order for Julie Paisant who has put together a string of solid rides to move up to 5th in the series, giving the team 3 of the top 5 women in the NCCX. Julie is also not afraid to do battle in the singlespeed category, consistently finishing strongly in that coed category. What an animal! The Men’s Pro 1/2 race was more of the same. Lucas Livermon took the early lead and helped to elevate the pace, setting Jon Hamblen up for his late race dash to the line, edging out Scott Fredrick and the ever-chasing Robert Marion. Jon has started to create some space at the top of the NCCX standings with his first win of the season. Jon is showing form needed to complete at the front of the big upcoming NCGP UCI Weekend in Hendersonville, NC, 11/19 and 11/20. This coming weekend, all our series leaders head to Charlotte for NCCX #5 on Sunday, hoping for more great racing and results.
More great news soon!