Sam Schultz (Subaru Trek) races through the Trek Fire Lane. Schultz arrived in Wisconsin directly from the London Olympics one week prior.
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Pro XCT heads to Wisconsin for penultimate round
The battle for the US Pro XCT series crown is heading to Wisconsin for a weekend of racing. The Wisconsin Off Road Series (WORS) and its Subaru Cup event are playing host to the penultimate round of the US cross country national series. In addition to the cross country on Saturday, racers will compete in a short track and super D on Sunday.
2013 is the third consecutive year that the Subaru Cup Pro XCT has been awarded UCI Category 1 status on the international mountain bike calendar. The UCI category 1 designation attracts racers interested in chasing UCI points. In previous years, this has included teams from Canada, Mexico and several Olympians returning home from the London Olympics in 2012.
The tight contest between Todd Wells (Specialized) and Jeremiah Bishop (Sho-Air/Cannondale) for the men's top spot in the Pro XCT standings is ongoing. Both Wells and Bishop are confirmed for the start. Wells, who won the US marathon championships last weekend, is bringing along his teammate Howard Grotts for reinforcement while Bishop will have assistance from his teammate Max Plaxton. Bishop currently leads with 1195 points to Wells' 1135 points.
Both top favorites will be further challenged by US cross country national champion Sam Schultz (Trek), cyclo-cross star Ryan Trebon and Australian Sid Taberlay.
In the women's race, series leader Chloe Woodruff (Crankbrothers Racing) is one of the top favorites. She has 705 points to current runner-up Lea Davison (Specialized) with 660 points. World Cup regular Katerina Nash (Luna) and freshly crowned US marathon champion Pua Mata (Sho-Air/Cannondale) are other contenders for the win.
Outstanding spectator turnout and amateur participation are hallmarks of events hosted by WORS, and the Subaru Cup is no exception. At the 2012 Subaru Cup, hundreds of enthusiastic fans lining the course led many pro racers to draw favorable comparisons to the atmosphere at a World Cup race. The most popular spectator areas, including the Trek Fire Lane Drops and the Bontrager Boulder, will return in 2013.
Based on the modern World Cup model, the Subaru Cup Pro XCT course is approximately 3.6 miles in length. Over an area of 60 acres, it winds in on itself several times to provide spectators convenient access and numerous viewing opportunities. With wooded singletrack, fast descents and short, steep climbs, the Subaru Cup will offer all racers a real taste of Midwest mountain biking.
Now in its 22nd season, WORS leads a resurgence of American mountain bike racing. Last year, WORS races averaged over 700 racers and close to 1,000 spectators per event at each of 12 distinct venues throughout Wisconsin. Consistent numbers like these have earned WORS the label of America's largest state mountain bike racing series. WORS provides competitive challenges for professional MTB racers, seven-year-old weekend warriors, and everyone in between.
Editorial assistance provided by Todd Nutter.