Brian Matter (Gear Grinder / Trek) and Abigail Strigel (Trek Stores of Madison) won the Trek Big Ring Classic, third race of the Wisconsin Off Road Series.
Nearly 800 racers enjoyed the dry, sunny trails at 9-Mile Forest outside Wausau, Wisconsin. By the time the elite racers took to the course, temperatures hovered in the 80s, and the course was fast and dusty.
In the men's race, a group of six riders broke away early in the first lap. Nathan Guerra (Mr. Tree Racing), helping to set the pace at the front, was shed almost immediately after the gap formed when he cut his tire on one of the notoriously jagged rocks in the technical singletrack at 9-Mile. Five riders then remained together for most of the race: Brian Matter, Mark Lalonde (Gary Fisher 29er), teammates Chris Peariso and Darrin Braun (Adventure 212 / Specialized), and Matt Gehling (Trek Stores of Madison).
The strategic, team tactics of the Adventure 212 men have thus far been a determining factor near the front of each of the 2010 races, and have set an unfamiliar precedent for the men's BelGioioso Elite field. Even when brothers and teammates Jesse and Mark Lalonde raced and won together throughout the 2008 season, the front of the mens field seemed to work together to drive the pace faster. By contrast, the Specialized 212 men described most of the race on Sunday as "a tea-party."
"It was really slow today," said Chris Peariso after the race. "I sat on the front for almost the entire race. I just controlled the pace and whenever I felt good, I'd throw an attack in. Just to test the legs. We dropped people off every so often."
"I was just kind of waiting on the back," concurred teammate Darrin Braun. "Chris was doing all the work, and I was just on the back waiting for my chance."
"It was a really weird race today," said defending WORS Overall Champion, Brian Matter. "Alot of tactics. Alot of going really slow then going really fast. I was happy to see the finish line."
By the fourth and final lap, the lead group had shed Gehling in an attack and rode out of the singletrack into a gauntlet of screaming spectators in a tight pack. Peariso set pace as they charged out to the turn-around point, and the real struggle began behind a stand of trees at the turn-around point.
"The sprint finish was the same scenario [as the sprint at the Crystal Lake Classic, on May 16]," said Matter. "I was cramping up a bit again, but luckily I cramped about 10 minutes before the finish and was able to pedal through it. The legs loosened up, and I just let instinct take over. Four men. Chris [Peariso] kind of jumped me before the turn. Then Marko [Lalonde] jumped and I wasn't sure. But, I pedaled hard and got in a little slipstream from Darrin [Braun]. He's a pretty tall guy. And I didn't stop pedaling until I hit the finish line."
"It was a long, hot race," said Matter. "I was pretty happy to come around that last corner and be done. I had another hard week of training and didn't feel the greatest today. So, again, I just used the experience."
"I totally thought I had it, you know," said a smiling Mark Lalonde at the awards ceremony. Lalonde finished second to Matter in the Overall Series last year. "I wasn't looking back, I wasn't looking to my side. I led out Brian and Darrin, but that's fine. I really didn't do a lot of work the whole race, I just kind of sat on. I didn't know what kind of shape I was in, because I haven't really raced at all this year. My wife and I recently bought a house, and I've been less focused on racing. So, it's fine. I was happy with it."
At the line, it was Matter, Braun and Lalonde. Peariso pedaled it in next, and Gehling, after sticking with the lead group for the first three laps, finished nearly four minutes back at 2:14:00.
While the men's race ran hot and slow on Sunday, the ladies started fast and didn't delay. Defending 2009 Overall Champion, Abigail Strigel, took her third win of the 2010 season, finishing in 1:50:19, over three minutes ahead of second place. Iowa racer Robin Williams (Mercy-Specialized) set a blazing pace in second to finish in 1:53:41. Sue Juedes (Mad Forks) once again caught and passed Claire Cannon mid-race, and took third by a comfortable margin at 1:56:29. Cannon (Trek Stores of Madison / WORS / T6) rode in for fourth in 1:57:18, and was followed by Lisa Krayer (Adventure 212 / Specialized) in 1:58:55.
In the Open Series, the 50+ men were led by Mark Kowaliw (MBRC-Flanders) in 1:54:30, while Chad Boyles (BVC-Nomad Cycling) led the Open Singlespeed men at 1:42:30. Liz Shull (Clif) led the Open Junior girls in 2:14:56, and Myles Beach (Expo) led the Open Junior boys in 1:42:46. The Cat 2 series men were led by Nicholas Holzem in 1:44:56, while the Cat 2 series women's race was won by newcomer Heidi Kraut (Team Endurance Trust) in 1:18:46.
The next race of the WORS Series will be held outside Kewaskum at the Sunburst Ski Area on June 13. That will be followed by the Subaru Cup, on the USA Cycling Pro XCT calendar for June 26-27 at Mt. Morris.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|2||Robin Williams (Mercy-Specialized)||0:03:22|
|3||Sue Juedes (Mad Forks)||0:06:11|
|4||Claire Cannon (Team WORS)||0:06:59|
|5||Lisa Krayer (Adventure 212/Specialized)||0:08:36|
|6||Lindsey Kriete (Team Gear Grinder)||0:10:21|
|7||Michelle Peariso (Adventure 212/Specialized)||0:11:50|
|8||Patti Kaufmann (Planet Bike)||0:14:43|
|9||Andrea Matter (Gear Grinder)||0:15:13|
|11||Brittany McConnell (Mercy Specialized)||0:15:52|
|12||Renee Bach (Chain Smokers)||0:16:12|
|13||Jennifer Danielson (Chainsmokers)||0:16:15|
|14||Jennifer Nowlin (Peace Coffee)||0:17:48|
|15||Kate Heil (Cyclenauts)||0:18:31|
|16||Kristi Olson (Kenwood/OFS)||0:20:42|
|17||April Dombrowski (Team Pedal Moraine)||0:22:43|
|18||Rachael Gatto (Twin Six)||0:23:23|
|19||Hannah Zlomke (Mr. Tree Racing)||0:23:38|
|20||Karlene Olson (Muddy Cup)||0:25:02|
|22||Brenda Zimmermann Thorp (Rib Mnt Cycles/Red Eye Brewery)||0:33:21|
|DNS||Gabriela Baranova (Profile design/Tread head cyc)|
|DNS||Regina Campbell (Alterra MTB/Twin Six)|
|DNS||Melissa Mabry (PrecisionMTB.c om)|
|DNS||Ashley Weichmann (Titletown Flyers)|
|DNF||Christine Czarnecki (Alterra Coffee MTB Team)|
|DNF||Molly Wolf (Guiness/Wheel Werks)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Brian Matter (Gear Grinder / Trek)||2:10:19|
|2||Darrin Braun (Adventure 212/Specialized)||0:00:00|
|3||Mark Lalonde (Gary Fischer 29/T6)||0:00:00|
|4||Chris Peariso (Adventure 212 / Specialized)||0:00:06|
|5||Matt Gehling (Trek Bicycle Store Madison)||0:03:41|
|6||Ben Koenig (Rib Mountain Cycles)||0:04:04|
|7||Ryan Krayer (Adventure 212/Specialized)||0:04:06|
|8||Kevin McConnell (Mercy Specialized)||0:05:07|
|9||Jeff Melcher (Pedal Moraine)||0:05:16|
|10||Tyler Gauthier (Culvers Racing)||0:06:12|
|11||Michael Naughton (Treadhead Cycling)||0:06:22|
|13||Joe Stephens (Hayes)||0:07:44|
|14||Ronald Stawicki (Team Polska)||0:07:49|
|16||Chad Hildebrandt (Team Polska)||0:08:31|
|17||Justin Piontek (Performa g)||0:09:08|
|18||Ted Hanes (Fond du Lac / Oshkosh Cyclery)||0:09:29|
|19||Todd McFadden (Adventure 212/Ski Hut)||0:09:49|
|20||Scott Cole (Adventure 212/Specialized)||0:09:54|
|21||Matt Millin (Team BONK)||0:10:43|
|22||Nikolai Anikin (conti)||0:10:54|
|23||John Gatto (Twin Six)||0:11:03|
|24||Jan Rybar (Team Pedal Moraine)||0:12:06|
|25||Ray Nelson (Treadhead Cycling)||0:12:08|
|26||Mike Budd (Wheel & Sprocket)||0:13:08|
|27||Chris Mantel (VeloTrocadero)||0:13:15|
|28||J. W. Miller||0:13:19|
|29||Bill Nigh (Team Pedal Moraine)||0:13:49|
|30||Glenn Kirst (Wheel & Sprocket)||0:15:17|
|31||John Shull (CLIF)||0:16:14|
|32||Nate Jasperson (Performa Cycling)||0:16:34|
|33||Luke Holtan (VELO TROCADERO)||0:17:00|
|34||Jimmie Colflesh (Mom & Pop Racing)||0:17:49|
|35||Russ Krueger (Rib Mountain Cycles)||0:17:55|
|36||Nick Sabel (Fond du Lac/Oshkosh Cyclery)||0:18:08|
|38||Trevor Olson (Muddy Cup)||0:20:05|
|39||Jesse Shoemaker (Performa Cycling)||0:20:08|
|40||Dan Schaefer (Team Pedal Moraine)||0:20:12|
|41||Justin Lund (EVOMO.COM)||0:21:14|
|42||Roger Lundsten (Muddy Cup)||0:24:31|
|44||Tyler Jenema (Gear Grinder)||0:25:26|
|45||David Haase (Attitude Sports)||0:26:08|
|46||Aristotle Peters (EXPO Racing)||0:26:49|
|47||Andrew Ignasiak (CCS)||0:26:55|
|48||Mark Burkholz (Extreme Bike)||0:27:09|
|49||Kyle Jacobson (Iscord)||0:27:34|
|51||Jerrod Collier (Muddy Cup Racing)||0:29:37|
|52||Kevin Flanders (Peace Coffee Racing)||0:32:19|
|53||Brian Braun (UW-STOUT/Bad Cat/TEAM EXPO)||0:32:53|
|54||Nathan Johnson (Muddy Cup)||0:35:06|
|55||Craig Manthe (Polska)||0:35:49|
|56||Todd Bischoff (Gary Fisher 29er Crew)||0:36:38|
|57||Tim Scanley (Alterra Coffee)||0:37:21|
|58||Jason Gosse (Team WORS)||0:39:17|
|DNS||Jesse Bell (SISU Cycles)|
|DNS||Mike Curtes (Fuel Cafe / milw Bike / G864)|
|DNS||Bryan Fosler (Trek Store of Madison)|
|DNS||Cory Gwin (Magnus)|
|DNS||Carlos Haeckel (Alterra / Sunringle / Voodoo)|
|DNS||Chad Sova (On the Rivet / GearGrinder)|
|DNS||Neil Swanson (Team WORS)|
|DNF||Corey Stelljes (Chainsmokers)|
|DNF||John Lirette (Hayes)|
|DNF||Maciej Nowak (Team Polska)|
|DNF||Karl Tillman (Bikes Limited Inc)|
|DNF||Nathan Guerra (Mr Tree)|
|DNF||John Brown (Point Pursuit)|
|DNF||Butch Welke (Treadhead Cycling)|