By Marc Vettori
Over 400 riders from around the Mid Atlantic converged upon Druid Hill Park, nestled in the heart of Baltimore, Maryland, for the official kick-off of the MABRA Cyclo-cross series in unseasonably warm temperatures.
In the elite men's race, Italian powers Davide Frattini and Luca Damiani of Colavita/Sutterhome presented by Cooking Light team, charged to the front with C3-Sollay.com team-mates Andy Wulfkuhle and Weston Schempf in tow. A mid-race attack by Schempf was successful in splitting up the Italians. Two laps later, Frattini launched his own attack, and opened a small gap on Schempf that he was able to keep to claim the victory. Hometown hero Schempf would take the second step on the podium, followed by Damiani, and Dan Wilson riding for Monster Heath Cycling in fourth.
In the elite women's race Carolyn Popovic riding for Team C.I.C.L.E. won a hotly contested race, carving her way through the field and taking a direct path to the top of the podium. Erica Yozellof the Fort Factory Team took second place honours as Jessica Hill of Trail's End Cycles brought home the bronze medal. C3-Sollay.com rider Lisa Vible, the defending Bikereg.com MABRA women's champion, was fourth.