Katerina Nash claimed back to back victories in the Exergy USGP Deschutes Cup weekend, soloing away in the third lap to seal her overall win in the series over Nicole Duke (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld), who also took second on the day. Teal Stetson-Lee (California Giant Berry) took third in the race, but her teammate Meredith Miller claimed the third spot in the series after a first lap flat knocked her out of contention.
It was a bittersweet victory for Nash, the now ex-Czech champion, who missed her national championships to take part in the final round of the American series.
"I wanted to do the entire USGP series this year, and they overlapped," Nash said. "I've had a lot of national championships to this point, and I skipped both the mountain bike and cyclo-cross nationals this year. It gives a younger riders a chance to get more sponsorship back home. Maybe I was missed, but it's ok."
Duke put in an aggressive start, taking her fourth Avid Shorty Hole Shot of the series and pocketing another $250 in cash for her efforts, but then the Cannondale rider sat back and let Julie Krasniak (Rapha-Focus) set the pace.
Krasniak led through the first lap with Duke and Nash in tow. Also present was Stetson-Lee as the sole representative of her team after Miller suffered and ill-timed flat tire on the first section and had to run half a lap to the pits.
Duke came around Krasniak, but it was only a matter of time before Nash would pounce. The Czech rider surged out of a twisty section, only Duke could hold her pace.
For Nash, it was just a matter of choosing the right moment to put in an unmatchable effort. "I'm not a fast starter, but there was no rush to get away," she said. "It's good to ride with people for a while, and they went out pretty fast in the first two laps, so I was happy to sit in for a while."
Duke said her goal was to stay with Nash for as long as she could, and that lasted through the midpoint of the race when Nash surged and finally edged out a ten second lead.
Once Nash was away, Stetson-Lee was able to make her way across to create a two-woman chase group as Krasniak held onto the fourth place position for the entire race.
As in the previous day, the two evenly matched chasers traded blows until the final lap when, this time, Duke fended off the bike gremlins which have plagued her over the past few weeks. She dislodged Stetson-Lee with a surge early in the final lap and cruised to second place just nine seconds behind Nash.
"In my past three races I had two flats, and then the derailleur yesterday. Today I finally got the placing that matched where my fitness is, and what I deserved with all the training I put in. I'm really pleased," Duke said.
"I didn't realize my body had it until the last lap when I tried to push away from Teal, and I realized I had more in me than thought I did. I'm completely happy with where I was. I had no idea that second in the series was even possible. My luck went bad yesterday, but today I had good luck - unfortunately for Meredith she had bad luck and that's what put me second in the series."
Stetson-Lee was happy with third, her second consecutive podium finish and a big leap up in consistency in her second year in the elite ranks.
"Nicole just rode me under the table. She has some super smooth lines. I managed to stick with her for the second to last lap, and then she was just super smooth on the back section on the last lap, and I made just the slightest mistake, a sloppy corner and it was enough for her to get a gap on me. I think she felt she had it and took advantage of it. It was still a great weekend."
Miller was disappointed to drop to third overall in the series, but kept racing through to the end, finishing 24th and out of the points.
"Unfortunately the flat happened early, and it was hard to see the other riders finishing the lap as I was still running to the pits," Miller said. "But I kept pushing. I had no idea what place I was in or what it was doing to my standing in the series, but it was just a matter of making it to the finish."
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||0:37:24|
|2||Nicole Duke (USA) Cannondale Pb Cyclocrossworld.Com||0:00:09|
|3||Teal Stetson-Lee (USA) California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized||0:00:12|
|4||Julie Krasniak (Fra) Rapha-Focus||0:00:35|
|5||Kaitlin Antonneau (USA) Cannondale Pb Cyclocrossworld.Com||0:00:54|
|6||Susan Butler (USA) Hudz Subaru||0:01:03|
|7||Amanda Carey (USA) Kenda/Felt||0:01:08|
|8||Andrea Smith (USA) Ladiesfirst Racing||0:01:11|
|9||Maureen Bruno Roy (USA) Bob'S Red Mill Pb Seven Cycles||0:01:15|
|10||Coryn Rivera (USA) Team Exergy Twenty12||0:01:30|
|11||Alice Pennington (USA) Team S&M||0:01:39|
|12||Kelsy Bingham (USA) Roosters/Bikers Edge||0:02:12|
|13||Katherine Sherwin (USA) Stan'S Notubes Elite Cyclocross Team||0:02:23|
|14||Pepper Harlton (Can) Juventus Cycling Club|
|15||Devon Gorry (USA) Team Rambuski Law||0:02:27|
|16||Sage Wilderman (USA) Unsponsored||0:02:48|
|17||Kari Studley (USA) Team Redline||0:03:13|
|18||Heather Clark (USA) Bend Memorial Clinic Total Care Racing||0:03:15|
|19||Jenni Gaertner (USA) Raleigh America|
|20||Rebecca Blatt (USA) Rebecca Blatt|
|21||Courtenay McFadden (USA) Cycling Northwest||0:03:32|
|22||Beth Ann Orton (USA) Team S+M||0:03:41|
|23||Kristi Berg (USA) Cycle U-Popcap||0:03:56|
|24||Meredith Miller (USA) California Giant Cycling||0:04:06|
|25||Melanie Lewis (USA) Cycle U-Popcap||0:04:13|
|26||Courtney Dimpel (USA) Team Rambuski Law||0:04:27|
|27||Anna Dingman (USA) Cycleution||0:04:55|
|28||Shannon Gibson (USA) Stan'S Notubes Elite Cyclocross Team||0:05:32|
|29||Katrina Baumsteiger (USA) Team Rambuski Law||0:05:36|
|30||Serena Bishop (USA) Silverado Jewelry Gallery P/B Sunnyside||0:06:03|
|31||Alexandra Burton (USA) Upper Echelon Fitness||0:06:44|
|32||Patricia Dowd (USA)||0:07:24|
|DNF||Sarah Maile (USA) Ventana Mountain Bikes|
|DNF||Joele Guynup (USA) Condo Group/Shimano/Marin|
|DNF||Jessica Cutler (USA) Cucina Fresca|
|DNS||Marne Smiley (USA) Bob's Red Mill Cyclocross|
|DNS||Karen Oppenheimer (USA) Yard Sale Cyclocross|
|DNS||Rebecca Gross (USA) Tough Girl|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||364||pts|
|2||Nicole Duke (USA) Cannondale Pb Cyclocrossworld.Com||197|
|3||Meredith Miller (USA) California Giant Cycling||190|
|4||Katherine Compton (USA) Rabobank-Giant Off-Road Team||190|
|5||Kaitlin Antonneau (USA) Cannondale Pb Cyclocrossworld.Com||187|
|6||Susan Butler (USA) Hudz Subaru||148|
|7||Caroline Mani (Fra) CC Etupes||138|
|8||Georgia Gould (USA) Luna Pro Team||132|
|9||Teal Stetson-Lee (USA) California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized||123|
|10||Chloe Forsman (USA) Race Club 11||97|