The third annual North American Cyclo-cross Trophy (NACT) series concluded at the UCI Baystate Cyco-cross held in Sterling, Massachusetts on Sunday. Jeremy Powers (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com) and Laura Van Gilder (C3-Athletes Serving Athletes) were presented with the unique heavy weight champion trophy belt signifying their accomplishments as the series’ overall winners.
"It is the best to have that belt," Van Gilder said. "I remember seeing the belt two years ago when Georgia [Gould] won it and it is significant to me because I also like to watch UFC Fighting and so I thought it was the bomb. It is a belt that gets passed on every year. It is super, super heavy and it is capable of having the series overall winners names engraved on it. I get to keep it for one year and then bring it to the final race next year."
Van Gilder moved into the overall lead after a convincing victory during the opening round of the Baystate Cyclo-cross on Saturday. She earned enough points to maintain her lead through the following day despite a mechanical set back that resulted in a fifth place on Sunday. The notable road sprinter won the series overall title ahead of Natasha Elliott (Garneau Club Chaussure-Ogilvy) in second and Meredith Miller (California Giant-Specialized) in third. Miller was noticeably absent from the weekend’s racing along with other top five contenders Wendy Simms, Georgia Gould and teammate Katerina Nash (Luna Pro).
"Initially at the beginning of the year it wasn’t a series that I was trying to win," Van Gilder said. "I looked at the results and saw that I was still in contention for the win this weekend. For some of the other riders it was more difficult to attend and when I saw the start list I knew what I needed to do. I knew that if I had some consistent races that it was possible."
Powers also moved into the overall lead after winning series’ round seven during the Baystate Cyclo-cross on Saturday. He maintained his overall lead ahead of teammate and defending champion Tim Johnson in second and Francis Mourey (FDJ) in third.
"It is awesome to have won the series," Powers said. "I would have liked to battle it out with Tim but he went to the World Cup. I was set back in Boulder during round six when I had a flat tire and it took me a little bit out of the standings but because Tim wasn’t at Baystate on Saturday, I moved back into the lead. I felt like I rode a consistent season and did well at races that really mattered. I’m psyched to win the series and I’m lucky that it worked out."
Series promoter Brook Watts announced late in the season that the series finale relocated to the UCI Bay State Cyclo-cross which conflicted with the three-day Jingle Cross series held in Iowa City, Iowa. The NACT series traditionally ended at the Whitmore's Landscaping Super Cross Cup however construction on the venue forced event organizer Myles Romanow to move the race to a new location in Long Island losing its position as the series finale and it UCI status.
"I was originally going to go to the Jingle Cross because it had a C1 race but my coach came out and did a training block with me the week before and the way that it worked out with Baystate was great," Powers said. "Baystate was close to my house and it was even with prize money with Jingle Cross, the C1 points would have been nice but the NACT overall was really a great win for me. It was something that I hadn’t done before."
One of the series’ strong points was that it offered travel stipends to the top three contenders each week. It also offered equal prize money across the elite women and men’s categories in the overall standings. Powers and Van Gilder each won $1,500 for their respective victories.
"I was thrilled that I won because I think that it is a very good series and the promoters are always interested in having the athletes get to the event," Van Gilder said. "The overall prize list was very enticing. I think it is so important as an athlete to support the promoters that are supporting us and rewarding us with equal prize money as the men. I try and seek out races that do that because I think it is important to attend them and show our support. They deserve it and in turn they think we deserve it so it’s a win-win situation. I’m hoping that next year I will be able to fit all of the races onto my calendar and make it work."
The third edition of the NACT series kicked off with the first two rounds at StarCrossed p/b Stanley/PMI and Rad Racing Grand Prix p/b Hammer Nutrition held in Seattle, Washington. The series moved on to rounds three and four at the Great Brewers Gran Prix of Gloucester p/b Addison Gilbert Hospital in Gloucester, Massachusetts. The battle for the overall lead continued in rounds five and six at the Colorado Cross Classic p/b Webroot and the Victory Circle Graphix Boulder Cup in Colorado before wrapping up at the Baystate Cross in Sterling, Massachusetts. Race organizers weighted the best six of eight rounds to calculate the points and determine the overall winners.
2010 NACT final standings
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Laura Van Gilder (USA) C3 - Athletes Serving Athletes||180||pts|
|2||Natasha Elliott (Can) Garneau Club Chaussure-Ogilvy||165|
|3||Meredith Miller (USA) California Giant-Specialized||165|
|4||Wendy Simms (Can) Kona||141|
|5||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||120|
|6||Andrea Smith (USA) LadiesFirst Racing||108|
|7||Maureen Bruno Roy (USA) Bob's Red Mill p/b Seven Cycles||106|
|8||Georgia Gould (USA) Luna Pro Team||100|
|9||Sally Annis (USA) crossresults.com p/b JRA Cycles||92|
|10||Arley Kemmerer (USA) C3 - Athletes Serving Athletes||72|
|11||Devon Haskell (USA) Bike Station Aptos||66|
|12||Nicole Duke (USA) Hudz/Subaru||60|
|12||Katherine Compton (USA) Planet Bike-Stevens Bikes||60|
|12||Susan Butler (USA) Hudz-Subaru||60|
|15||Mical Dyck (Can) Trek Canada / Terrascape Racing||43|
|16||Linnea Koons (USA) Embrocation Cycling Journal||42|
|17||Katherine Sherwin (USA) Hudz-Subaru||40|
|18||Alice Pennington (USA) Team S&M||38|
|19||Amanda Miller (USA) Hudz-Subaru||37|
|20||Crystal Anthony (USA) LadiesFirst Racing||36|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Jeremy Powers (USA) Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com||280||pts|
|2||Timothy Johnson (USA) Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com||200|
|3||Francis Mourey (Fra) FDJ||120|
|4||Ryan Trebon (USA) Kona||97|
|5||James Driscoll (USA) Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com||96|
|6||Derrick St John (Can) Garneau Club Chaussure-Ogilvy||84|
|7||Justin Lindine (USA) BikeReg.com / Joe's Garage / Scott||71|
|8||Todd Wells (USA) Specialized||70|
|8||Geoff Kabush (Can) Maxxis-Rocky Mountain||70|
|10||Adam Craig (USA) Rabobank-Giant Off Road Team||67|
|11||Luke Keough (USA) Champion System p/b Keough Cyclocross||66|
|11||Adam Myerson (USA) Cycle-Smart||66|
|13||Jonathan Page (USA) Planet Bike||60|
|13||Christian Heule (Swi) Champion System LBS||60|
|15||Jake Wells (USA) Hudz-Subaru||52|
|16||Nicholas Weighall (USA) California Giant-Specialized||40|
|17||Tristan Schouten (USA) cyclocrossracing.com/Blue/Rolf||39|
|18||Travis Livermon (USA) Mock Orange Racing||38|
|18||Davide Frattini (Ita) Hudz-Subaru||38|
|20||Troy Wells (USA) Team Clif Bar||34|