The US Gran Prix of Cyclocross (USGP) presented by Crank Brothers moves to the Pacific Northwest for the exciting series finale, where tight races in the elite men's, women's and U23 races will be decided in the cyclo-cross hot bed of Portland, Oregon.
Taking place at the Portland International Raceway, the USGP Toyota Portland Cup will host the last two days of racing in the six-race national series and will determine the USGP Champions and who will receive an automatic USA Cycling world championship berth. 2007 marks the fourth consecutive year Portland will play host to the USGP.
The USGP Toyota Portland Cup will be held on the same cyclo-cross course used for the 2004 National Championships and should be a challenge for the series finale.
"The course is relatively flat and offers spectators a wide open view of almost the entire course from the infield at Portland International Raceway," said Brad Ross, local organizer for the USGP of Cyclocross Toyota Portland Cup. "As in the past, we expect that having our race in December means that the weather is going to play a huge role in the outcome." As expected, the weather will play a factor with rain and snow showers predicted throughout the weekend.
Defending USGP Champ Ryan Trebon (Kona - YourKey) is coming off a weekend sweep in New Jersey at the USGP Mercer Cup where he reclaimed the leader's jersey from Tim Johnson (Cannondale/ Lear /cyclocrossworld.com). Johnson sitting just six points behind Trebon in the standings is well within striking distance of the leader's jersey and the overall championship. Johnson's team-mate Jeremy Powers (currently third in the standings) and Trebon's Kona team-mate Barry Wicks (fourth overall) will also be a threat this weekend and in the hunt for a podium spot.
In the Elite Women's field, USGP leader Georgia Gould (Luna) looks to maintain her series lead. Gould's sweep in Mercer allowed her to don the leader's jersey and take the lead from Katie Compton (Spike Shooter) who missed the last stop of the USGP while in Belgium winning her first ever World Cup race.
Compton, who is now ranked #2 in the World, will be back and looking to make some noise in the women's field. Also, vying for the series lead are Alison Sydor (Rocky Mountain Haywood) who sits in second place overall and defending USGP champion Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) currently third.
The U23 series is even tighter than the elite races, where a mere eight points separate first and third place. Series leader Jamey Driscoll (FiordiFrutta) claimed the series lead after a win and a third place finish in New Jersey to claim the series leader's jersey heading into Portland. Bjorn Selander (Ridley) sits just two points behind Driscoll and World Silver Medalist Danny Summerhill (Clif Bar) lurks in third place just eight points back.
For more information on the USGP, visit www.usgpcyclocross.com.