Woodruff captures win for second consecutive year
Maplelag Resort played host to round nine in the Minnesota State Championship Series and a stop on the USA Cycling National Calendar series over Labor Day weekend. The Laddies Loppet stage race featured a three mile timed trial on Saturday morning followed by short track racing in the afternoon. Sunday featured the cross country event which included the infamous "lakeside drops". Tempted by the US$3,000 prize list, most of the top Midwest pros opted to race closer to home versus racing in the NMBS finals in Brian Head, Utah.
In the women's elite field, Jenna Zander (Sobe/Cannondale) swept all three events to take the overall stage win over Kyia Anderson (Echo/Cannondale). Velo Rochester rider and former Minnesota state champion Jennifer Fisher placed third with Corey Coogan (Ridley) and Linda Cooper (Great Plains Cycling) rounding out the top five in overall classification.
In men's elite, three riders cracked the 10 minute barrier in the opening time trial with Doug Swanson (Grandstay) taking home $50 extra dollars with a sub 10-minute time of 9:40. TJ Woodruff (BMC) and Brendan Moore (Velo Rochester) were just 10 seconds behind with only a tenth of a second separating Woodruff and Moore. Swanson scored his second win of the weekend by making a move on the final lap to hold off Woodruff and the rest of the field. A group of seven riders jockeyed for position the final three laps after brothers Sam and Eric Oftedahl (Hollywood Cycles) did work at the front in the first chase group to bring everything together.
Warm and windy conditions dried the course making for dusty conditions in the cross country on Sunday as Doug Swanson set a blistering pace on the first lap to open the race. Woodruff and Sam Oftedahl kept Swanson in check as Oftedahl eventually made his way to the front. Woodruff continued the chase in second after Swanson had to let up and recover from his torrid pace. Woodruff caught Oftedahl on the last lap and held off Oftedahl by 15 seconds to take the win. Brendan Moore rode steady to place third 15 seconds back with Eric Oftedahl and Swanson rounding out the top five, respectively.
In the final general classification, Woodruff took the win the second year in a row followed by Moore, Sam Oftedahl, Swanson and Eric Oftedahl. Junior Expert rider Jake Richards (Salsa/Hollywood Cycles) rode to a top 10 finish in the GC after an eighth place finish in the cross country among GC riders which featured mostly elites and semi-pros.
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of the Laddies Loppet.