Crusher in the Tushar - Gallery

Grant, Dong triumph in gravel race

Alex Grant (Gear Rush) and Evelyn Dong (Pivot-Stan's No Tubes) prevailed in one of the fastest editions of Crusher in the Tushar against fields stacked with notable road talent.

More than 600 riders competed in the 111km-long gravel race in Utah's Tushar Mountains, including new US national road champion Alex Howes (Education First Pro Cycling), criterium champion Travis McCabe (Floyd's Pro Cycling) and U23 champion Lance Haidet (Aevolo Cycling); along with Team Tibco's Laurens Stephens and reigning "Queen of Kanza", Amity Rockwell.

Stephens went out hard, opening up a solo lead only to be caught and passed by Dong with 10 miles to go, just after cresting the race's major difficulty dubbed the Col d'Crush. Dong opened up a sizable lead while Stephens had done enough to secure second with Sarah Max (Argonaut-ENVE) following in third, three minutes later.

"I definitely didn't expect to win coming into this, having never ridden this course before," said Dong. "It's my first time. A lot of my training is like this, high altitude riding, this is what I love to do. In that sense, this pretty much feels like home."

Amy Charity, Aimee Vasse, Mindy Caruso, Scotti Lechuga, Hanna Muegge, Amity Rockwell and Kae Takeshita rounded out the top 10.

The same climb proved decisive on the men's field, and it was there that Grant launched the decisive attack about halfway up the 2500 ft. climb, dropping fellow leaders Howes and Eddie Anderson (Axeon-Hagens Berman). 39-year-old Grant opened up a 90-second lead by the crest and continued to extend his lead over the next 20km to finish three minutes before Anderson with Howes a further minute adrift.

"Two years I've done it I've had flats, two years I've had catastrophic bonks, and last year I had a pretty good year," said Grant. "This is my sixth time racing, and I finally got the win. Honestly, this was like a dream, like 'maybe I'll win the Crusher someday, maybe not.' I'm so pumped to win it, it was a super-fast day out there, tons of strong riders."

"Oh man, it was tough," said freshly-crowned U.S. road champion Howes. "I was down at sea level before this, so coming back [to altitude], at the bottom of the Col d'Crush, I was feeling like a real champion, and then we hit a certain altitude and I just detonated. I'm actually pretty surprised I held on for third. It's a funny thing at altitude, it's like a bad dream. You just watch people ride away, and there's just nothing you can do. Hats off to Eddie and Alex, both of them rode great."

Cyclo-crosser Jamie Driscoll was fourth ahead of Zach Calton, with TJ Eisenhart, Lance Haidet, Gage Hecht and Travis McCabe and Luke Gangic-Wellman rounding out the top 10.

"It's an absolute honor and thrill to have some of the country's top pro riders add the Crusher to their schedules," said race founder and director Burke Swindlehurst. "But what really fills me with pride and gets me emotional is seeing the weekend warriors--some of whom walked many of the climbs--come across the line hours after the pros have finished. I have crazy respect for anyone who crosses that finish line, and it's seeing those folks achieve their goals that is the most rewarding part of this job."

Full Results

Pro/Open Men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Alex Grant (Gear Rush)4:15:08 
2Eddie Anderson (Hagens Berman Axeon)0:03:01 
3Alex Howes (EF Pro Cycling)0:04:11 
4James Driscoll (DNA Cycling/Mavic)0:04:44 
5Zach Calton (Spry - Legacy Properties West)0:08:03 
6TJ Eisenhart (Hincapie)0:09:20 
7Lance Haidet (Aevolo)0:09:21 
8Gage Hecht (Aevolo)0:14:35 
9Travis McCabe (Floyd's Pro Cycling)0:16:04 
10Luke Gangi-wellman (Ascent Cycling)0:18:07 
11Travis Lechner (CINCH Cycling)0:19:23 
12Ken Benesh (SBT GRVL p/b CANYON)0:19:59 
13Neil Shirley (ENVE)0:22:38 
14Leroy Popowski (Juwi/Insight)0:24:17 
15Eric Marcotte (Factor/Shimano/Eliel/IRC)0:26:17 
16Spencer Johnson (Johnson Elite Ortho)0:28:51 
17Matthew Tyler Turner (Summit Bike Club)0:29:16 
18Ross Ellwood (Alpha Bicycle/ Groove Subaru CX)0:31:11 
19Allen Krughoff (Chocolove Mavic)0:33:44 
20Noah Simms (Floyd's Pro Cycling)0:33:57 
21Jason Siegle (SDG Muscle Monster)0:36:17 
22Geoffrey Montague (Specifix)0:37:34 
23Chris Mackay (ASSOS Speed Club)0:37:56 
24Danny van Wagoner0:38:41 
25Jake Pantone (ENVE)0:39:09 
26Spencer Glasgow (STAY PARK CITY)0:40:44 
27Jeff Bender (KUHL)0:41:13 
28Scott Moninger (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:41:19 
29John Borstelmann (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:41:42 
30Jiri Senkyrik0:41:52 
31Noah Granigan (Floyd's Pro Cycling)0:43:33 
32Brannan Fix (Alpha Bicycle Co.-Groove Subaru)  
33Ryan Steers (Giant Factory Off-Road)0:45:07 
34Joe Goettl (ABOVE & AND BEYOND CANCER PB SCHEELS)0:46:08 
35Joshua Bromley0:46:27 
36Robert Squire (HANGAR 15)0:49:21 
37Mat Stephens (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:50:33 
38Chris Smithwick (Fitzgerald's Bicycles)0:51:26 
39John Allison (Stay Park City Cycling)0:51:36 
40Michael Sencenbaugh (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:52:16 
41Rob Bell (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:52:17 
42Tyler Cloutier (TCCX)0:59:31 
43Matt Rossman1:00:04 
44Thomas Bender (KUHL)1:00:42 
45Nathan Miller (Roca Roja Bicycles/Ridgway Wrench)1:01:40 
46Joshua Lee1:03:57 
47Drew Miller (Pay 'N Take)1:08:45 
48Preston Yardley1:18:52 
49Michael Sutton2:10:53 
Women Open
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Evelyn Dong (Pivot Stans NoTubes)5:02:14 
2Lauren Stephens (Team TIBCO Silicon Valley Bank)0:08:04 
3Sarah Max (Argonaut/Enve)0:11:13 
4Amy Charity (DNA Pro Cycling Team)0:14:42 
5Aimee Vasse (Blue Factory Team)0:20:06 
6Mindy Caruso (Nero Veloce p/b Michael Thomas Coffee)0:21:36 
7Scotti Lechuga (Fearless Femme)0:26:28 
8Hanna Muegge (DNA Pro Cycling)0:28:49 
9Amity Rockwell (Easton Overland)0:34:46 
10Kae Takeshita (Panaracer/Factor p/b Bicycle X-Change)0:49:27 
11Melisa Rollins0:49:40 
12Charlotte Backus (Orion Racing)0:56:36 
13Christie Tracy (Holland Racing)1:04:26 
14Casey Richter1:09:34 
15Michelle Hance1:14:07 
16Chelsea Strate (Teravail)1:38:26 
17Turner Ramsay (Alpha Bicycle-Groove Subaru)2:03:26 
18Finn Taylor (Hogan's Heroes)  
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