Jonathan Page (ENGVT) won an emotional victory in Verona, Wisconsin to take the 2013 Elite Men's US Cyclo-cross Championships. Page established a small lead two laps into the race over Zach McDonald (Team Rapha-Focus) and used a combination of finesse and power to win his first championship in eight years.
Without a title sponsor Page rode the current season under his own banner named after his children, 'MiloEmmaPerle.' Immediately after the finish Page called his wife and kids, who are currently en route to meet him. "They just flew from Belgium this morning and now they are in New York or New Jersey just getting on the plane," said Page at the finish line. "My wife and kids are pretty dang happy. They probably thought she was drinking too much because she was in hysterics and crying."
The day worked out perfectly for Page who excels in challenging conditions. "I was pleasantly surprised that it warmed up and it got sunny, so it got more slippery," said Page who recently bought a house in Utah to escape Belgian summers. "It was cold. My fingertips are still numb. All in all it turned out better than I expected. I was a little worried yesterday when they started taking the Bobcat to the course."
At the start Ryan Trebon (Cannondale-Cyclcocrossworld.com) grabbed the hole shot and looked to be an early contender as he led a group of riders which included Zach McDonald, Justine Lindine (Redline), Jamey Driscoll and Tim Johnson, both riding for Cannondale-Cyclcocrossworld.com.
Towards the end of the second lap Page had dialed in the course and proceeded to open up a gap on McDonald, Trebon, and Driscoll. "I felt like the guys were holding me up a bit," said Page about his acceleration. "I just punched it to see what I got, and got a gap, and then kept the power on." McDonald was the only rider able to keep Page in sight, and with McDonald in-tow, the two riders proceeded to grow their lead on the dwindling chase group.
While both men rode without hesitation through the ruts and ice Page managed to grow his gap over McDonald to 12 seconds making it almost impossible for the young rider to make contact barring a late race catastrophe. Page rode in cleanly for the win, followed by McDonald, for second.
After his U23 championship, and fourth place finish in the Elite championship at the and of the previous season, McDonald felt a rocky 2012-2013 season had been set back on course. "We've had obvious ups and downs," said McDonald. "We struggled with form in November and December for sure, but we rebounded from that, and it should, in theory, show some good form for the rest of the month."
Jamey Driscoll lived up to team manager Stu Thorne's prediction earlier in the week and used his "under-rated" handling skills to drive home for third place. "I wanted the jersey just like everyone did but, I'm still definitely happy with the way it turned out. I'll take third and hopefully get on the Worlds team with that," said Driscoll who spent the latter half of the race solo chasing McDonald. "I was alone for most of it. I felt you needed your own space to just get in the groove and make a smooth line."
Behind Driscoll the remainder of the field was not quite as lucky. Below freezing temperatures, hard-set ruts, and areas of melting mud challenged riders and their pit crews. Justin Lindine and Ryan Trebon both were hung up by icy cleats and subsequent bike issues, which knocked them out of the top five.
Fourth place finisher, Danny Summerhill (UnitedHealthcare), was in the lead group the first lap before suffering an early mishap. "I actually flatted after the first lap," said Summerhill who is riding in his second race for UnitedHealthcare. "I figured most people would have thought I blew up but I didn't want that, so I just stayed slow and steady."
Summerhill, who led the race at one point in the first lap, steadily reeled in riders through the entire race to claw his way onto the podium.
For other riders it was just a rough day. Tim Johnson was battling for fourth until Summerhill passed him on the last lap. Fifth place was a disappointing finish for Johnson who has focused exclusively on cyclo-cross the last two seasons. "This is a big piece of the season," said Johnson "It kind of sucks that it's over already and I'm not standing on the real podium, but I will take what I can get."
Last year’s champion Jeremy Powers, who finished more than three minutes behind Page in sixth place, never contended for the lead throughout the race. "That was not really a good day at all," said Powers. "Tough conditions that did not suit me. When I got out there, I just didn't have the legs for it. It was a great week of training, and it seemed like things were going in the right direction so I don't really have any excuses. It just wasn’t a track I was going to do well on today."
It was not an easy route to the championship for Page. Page relied on his strong network of supporters including Robert Downs, founder of Planet Bike, and ENGVT President, Jerry Chabot, to help make a trip to nationals possible. "I gave up a weekend of racing, a race tomorrow in Belgium, and next weekend will be another race in the World Cup, because they financially could get me over here and take care of me. It worked out well obviously, but I couldn't do it without them. It took a lot of the weight off of myself, and my family, and gave me the opportunity to come here and do what I did."
As the only top American racing full time cyclo-cross in Europe, Page sees the US championship as a key ingredient to sponsorship success. "I had bad timing over the Christmas period, but now I'm glad I waited," said Page about his sponsorship search. "No one can ignore the National Champion. I'm happy to stay in the United States, and I'm happy to go over to Europe."
Page will spend the next several weeks stateside with his family before heading to Louisville, Kentucky for the World Cyclo-cross Championships on February 3rd.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Jonathan Page (ENGVT)||0:58:31|
|2||Zach McDonald (Team Rapha-FOCUS)||0:00:47|
|3||James Driscoll (Cannondale Cyclocrossworld/Cyclocrossworld)||0:00:59|
|4||Daniel Summerhill (UCI PCT: UnitedHealthcare)||0:01:44|
|5||Timothy Johnson (Cannondale Cyclocrossworld/Cyclocrossworld)||0:02:08|
|6||Jeremy Powers (Team Rapha-FOCUS)||0:03:09|
|7||Ryan Trebon (Cannondale/Clement)||0:03:44|
|8||Troy Wells (TEAM CLIF BAR Cycling)||0:04:45|
|9||Jeremy Durrin (JAM Fund / NCC /Tenet Racing)||0:04:56|
|10||Barry Wicks (Kona)||0:05:21|
|11||Isaac Neff (Trek Cyclocross Collective)|
|12||Brian Matter (Racers Against Childhood Cancer)||0:05:38|
|13||Justin Lindine (Redline)||0:05:41|
|14||Dan Timmerman (Richard Sachs - RGM Watches - Radix/Connecticut Yankee BC)||0:05:47|
|15||Anthony Clark (JAM Fund / NCC /Tenet Racing)||0:05:50|
|16||Adam Craig (Giant Factory Off-Road)||0:06:14|
|17||Spencer Paxson (Kona Factory Team)||0:06:26|
|18||Mitchell Hoke (Kenda Felt)||0:06:30|
|19||Tristan Schouten (UCI CT/WPT: Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)||0:06:32|
|20||Erik Tonkin (Kona)||0:06:36|
|21||Braden Kappius (TEAM CLIF BAR Cycling)||0:07:24|
|22||Taylor Carrington (Turin Bikes - Carmichael Training Systems)||0:07:29|
|23||Eric Thompson (Plan C p/b Challenge Tires)||0:07:56|
|25||Tim Allen (Feedback Sports Racing)||0:08:23|
|26||Jared Nieters (SEAVS/Haymarket)||0:08:49|
|27||Jake Wells (Stan's NoTubes Elite)||0:09:05|
|-2laps||Allen Krughoff (Donnelly Sports)|
|-2laps||Mike Sherer (UCI CT/WPT: Team Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)|
|-2laps||Adam Myerson (UCI CT: Team SmartStop p/b Mountain Khakis)|
|-2laps||Scott Chapin (Bay 101/HRS/Rock Lobster/Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster Cyclocross)|
|-2laps||Greg Wittwer (Bob's Red Mill Cyclocross Team/Bob's Red Mill Cyclocross)|
|-2laps||William Iaia (Groove Subaru-Alpha Bicycle Co)|
|-2laps||Chris Jackson (Castex Racing powered by Felt)|
|-2laps||Daniel Chabanov (Richard Sachs - RGM Watches - Radix/Connecticut Yankee BC)|
|-2laps||Craig Etheridge (Donnelly Sports)|
|-2laps||Robert Marion (Carpe Diem Racing)|
|-3laps||Nicholas Keough (Champion System p/b Keough Cyclocross /Corner Cycle Cycling Club)|
|-3laps||Trevor Koss (Magnus)|
|-3laps||Corey Stelljes (Cyclocrossracing.com)|
|-3laps||Brian Hludzinski (Boulder Cycle Sport)|
|-3laps||Michael Robson (MOOTS)|
|-3laps||Alex Work (Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster Cyclocross)|
|-3laps||Nicholas Lemke (Scalo Veloce)|
|-3laps||Shadd Smith (KCCX Fuji Elite Cyclocross Team p/b Challenge Tires)|
|-3laps||Aaron Bradford (Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster Cyclocross)|
|-3laps||Kenny Wehn (Stan's NoTubes Elite)|
|-3laps||Stephen Cummings (C3-Twenty20cycling.com/Charm City Cycling LLC)|
|-4laps||B Jacob Sitler|
|-4laps||Doug Schuler (Boulder Cycle Sport)|
|-4laps||Brett Pirie (Groove Subaru-Alpha Bicycle Co)|
|-4laps||Paul Mumford (Chicago Cuttin Crew)|
|-4laps||Brennan Wodtli (All Access Racing)|
|-4laps||David (Shawn) Adams (Cycle-Smart Inc.)|
|-4laps||William Street (KUHL)|
|-4laps||Ben Stalker (Fort Lewis College)|
|-4laps||Matthew Allen (Behind-Bars/LGR)|
|-4laps||Jason Cemanski (Cycle U / Apex Racing /Apex Racing Team)|
|-4laps||Joshua Whitmore (Team Athletix Benefitting Globalbike/Globalbike Racing)|
|-4laps||Aaron Bouplon (Boulder Running Company Cycling Team)|
|-4laps||David Sheek (SDG Felt)|
|-4laps||Travis Braun (Magnus)|
|-4laps||Donald Snoop Jr (Essex County Velo)|
|-4laps||John Bailey (Bailey Bikes)|
|-5laps||Travis Gruchow (Magnus)|
|-5laps||Josh Weis (Colavita Racing Inc.)|
|-5laps||Scott Shapiro (Magnus)|
|-5laps||Andrew Loaiza (Salvagetti/Happy Coffee Cyclocross)|
|-5laps||Christopher Berge (Magnus)|
|-5laps||Buckley Birkholz (Cyclocrossracing.com)|
|DNS||Michael Yozell (Kapelmuur Independent)|
|DNS||Peter Webber (Boulder Cycle Sport)|
|DNS||Jason Wagner (Flatlandia Cycling Team)|
|DNS||Stephen Tilford (TradeWind Energy Cycling Team)|
|DNS||Chad Tieman (Team Upland Brewing)|
|DNS||Russell Stevenson (Boulder Cycle Sport)|
|DNS||Mark Savery (Midwest Cycling Community NE)|
|DNS||Jesse Rients (Trek Cyclocross Collective)|
|DNS||David Reyes (Bloomington Cycle Racing Team)|
|DNS||Eric Nelson (Mudfoot)|
|DNS||Hugh Moran (Industry Nine Cycling Team p/b ABRC/Asheville Bicycle Racing Club)|
|DNS||Sheldon Miller (Bikeman.com)|
|DNS||Jeff Kluck (SC Velo)|
|DNS||Michael Hemme (SRAM Factory)|
|DNS||Brian Heifner (Magnus)|
|DNS||Christopher Fisher (Crossniacs)|
|DNS||Craig Faulkner (Crossniacs)|
|DNS||Aaron Elwell (Twin Six)|
|DNS||William Elliston (Mid Atlantic Cycling Club)|
|DNS||Brandon Dwight (Boulder Cycle Sport)|
|DNS||Michael Crouch (Swiftwick Factory Racing p/b Cumberland Transit)|
|DNS||Eric Christ (Bicycle Heaven/Team Bicycle Heaven)|
|DNS||Ken Benesh (Feedback Sports Racing)|
|DNS||Luke Batchelor-Clark (Magnus)|
|DNS||Edward Baker (Team Kappius)|
|DNS||Edwin Bull (Van Dessel Factory Team)|
|DNS||Molly Cameron (Portland Bicycle Studio)|
|DNS||Matt Shriver (Trek Cyclocross Collective)|
|DNS||Jacob Lasley (Team Soundpony)|
|DNS||Weston Schempf (Charm City Cycling LLC)|
|DNS||Christopher Jones (Team Rapha-FOCUS)|
|DNF||Spencer Powlison (Evol Elite Racing)|
|DNF||Kevin Berger (Team Wheel & Sprocket)|
|DNF||Stephen Hyde (Northampton Cycling Club)|
|DNF||Kevin Bradford-Parish (Cyclocrossracing.com)|
|DNF||Christian Favata (Favata's TRT Bicycles|