Coming into the Gloucester weekend Elite Men's and Women's US Gran Prix leaders Ryan Trebon (Kona) and Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com-Louis Garneau) carry some great form and a good bit of momentum. Bessette has yet to finish off the top step of the podium this year: her win streak stands at six coming into Gloucester. Trebon won the UCI Cat1 Wooden Wheels Cyclocross in Granogue, Penn. Last weekend and finished second the following day in Philadelphia.
The return of local hero, and two-time Gloucester winner, Tim Johnson (Cyclocrossworld.com-Louis Garneau) to the seaside course remains one of the weekend's highlights for New England 'cross fans. Johnson will be joined in the Elite Men's race by local contenders Mark McCormack and Jesse Anthony (Team Clif Bar), Adam Craig (Giant), and out-of-towners Barry Wicks (Kona), Ben Jacques-Maynes (Kodak Gallery-Sierra Nevada), and Belgium's Sten Raeymakers. Bessette will face the blue-and-pink Velo Bella machine led by Barbara Howe along with Christine Vardaros, Melodie Metzger, and Sarah Kerlin. Rising star Georgia Gould (Kona) and local Massachusetts talent Maureen Bruno Roy (Independent Fabrication) will also figure prominently in the Elite Women's mix.
"We're really excited to once again host the 3rd and 4th stops of the U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross", said Paul Boudreau, promoter of the Gloucester events. "Hurricane Wilma may be bashing the coastline today, but we know the perfect storm will be brewing this Halloween weekend when the racers come to town and take to the start line on our newly designed courses."
A special post-race Michelob ULTRA Party at the Rhumbline in Gloucester will kick off a full slate of events on Saturday night. Richard Fries, publisher of Ride Magazine and the world's most excitable announcer, will emcee the party, which starts at 6:30, and will interview several top riders during the evening, including Tim Johnson and Lyne Bessette. Essex County Velo (ECV), the host club of the Gran Prix of Gloucester, will present the New England debut of the cyclo-cross film "puresweethell" by Brian Vernor. The show will start promptly at 8:00 pm. Sunday's racing is highlighted by the ever-popular ECV Kids Race, which will be run promptly at 1:00 pm in the upper infield of the Stage Fort Park course.
For more information, look up www.usgpcyclocross.com