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Kabush wins Cross Crusade in Bend

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Santa made a special delivery to the final Cross Crusade

Santa made a special delivery to the final Cross Crusade
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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The snow was a major feature again Sunday, but temps were higher

The snow was a major feature again Sunday, but temps were higher
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Carl Decker took over the lead on the second lap. Geoff Kabush is chasing in the background

Carl Decker took over the lead on the second lap. Geoff Kabush is chasing in the background
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Geoff Kabush was incognito in a retro Banesto jersey

Geoff Kabush was incognito in a retro Banesto jersey
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Riders bundled up despite slightly warmer weather

Riders bundled up despite slightly warmer weather
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Cal Giant riders showed up in force for the final Cross Crusade Sunday in Bend

Cal Giant riders showed up in force for the final Cross Crusade Sunday in Bend
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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A Trek rider leads Tim Johnson

A Trek rider leads Tim Johnson
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Jamey Driscoll pivots for some traction

Jamey Driscoll pivots for some traction
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Carl Decker leads the way over the snow-covered course

Carl Decker leads the way over the snow-covered course
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Yannick Eckmann tackles a run-up

Yannick Eckmann tackles a run-up
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Tim Johnson had a fun race after his win the day before

Tim Johnson had a fun race after his win the day before
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Carl Decker at the top of a run-up

Carl Decker at the top of a run-up
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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A Cal Giant riders climbs the stairs

A Cal Giant riders climbs the stairs
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Geoff Kabush checks on Carl Decker as they take the bell for the final lap

Geoff Kabush checks on Carl Decker as they take the bell for the final lap
(Image credit: Pat Malach)
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Saturday winner Tim Johnson added some warm weather gear for Sunday's race

Saturday winner Tim Johnson added some warm weather gear for Sunday's race
(Image credit: Pat Malach)

Geoff Kabush (Scott-3 Rox Racing) followed his second-place finish Saturday at the UCI C1 Deschutes Brewery Cup in Bend with a win Sunday during the Cross Crusade series finale on the same snow-covered course. Bend's Carl Decker battled Kabush throughout for the day's victory, and his runner-up finish helped secure the second overall Cross Crusade title for the Giant Factory Team rider.

Although the Cross Crusade is sanctioned by the Oregon Bicycle Racing Association and not USA Cycling or the UCI, many of the Elite riders from Saturday's C1 event stuck around for another day of racing. The weather jumped from near zero on Saturday to double digits on Sunday, and the winds that added to the misery the day before also died down.

"It felt almost balmy out here today," joked Kabush, who wore a retro Banesto jersey and pink helmet for the race. "It was my first Cross Crusade, and I've always wanted to do one. It's a fun experience, and it was fun hanging out in Bend. The Cross Crusade guys put on awesome races."

Saturday winner Tim Johnson started the race in an orange reflective vest but stopped in the pits after a lap to get rid of the extra clothing. The distraction didn't help his effort, as he fell out of the top 10 when he sat out a lap later in the race.

"We have all of our bikes and our truck," Johnson said. "Why not race? This is the 'cross that I remember the most. It was fun. A lot of people on the course at the same time. If you pass someone they're happy to let you by. If you mess up then they'll be bummed out, but it's just a blast. With this course being as tight as it was and with all the snow, made for a lot of passing."

As is normally the case at the Cross Crusade, The Elite men shared the course with the Elite women and masters, although participation numbers were down from the 1,200-rider daily average for a typical Cross Crusade event.

Johnson grabbed the lead early on the first lap but soon surrendered his lead to Decker and Kabush. The two mountain bikers battled throughout the afternoon, with Kabush eventually gaining the upper hand as the lap board neared zero. At that point, Decker was left battling traffic to get back on terms with the Canadian national champ.

"We were pretty much the same," Decker said of how he and Kabush were riding. "I should have passed him going into the last lap because it's so hard to get by. And then I got gapped off a little bit. And that's just the way it is in traffic; sometimes the traffic helps you close it, and sometimes it opens it right up. It's a roll of the dice."

Decker was able to catch Kabush before the finishing straight, but the dice came up snake eyes for the Bend rider as Kabush surged ahead for the win at the line.

"It was neat that I caught him again and it came down to a sprint, because I felt like I was riding well yesterday, but I don't have many UCI points and I started in the back," Decker said. "It was frustrating. I had really good legs and was riding well, and I fought my way to 13th or something."

Nevertheless, Decker was happy to collect the prize for the series that is partially sponsored by Giant.

"It's been a good year, and I've been in the right place at the right time," he said. "It's been a good series."

Results

#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Geoff Kabush (Scott-3 Rox Racing)
2Carl Decker (Giant Factory Team)
3Troy Wells (Clif Bar)
4Yannick Eckmann (California Giant-Specialized)
5Cody Kaiser (California Giant-Specialized)
6Jamey Driscoll (Raleigh-Clement)
7Spencer Paxson (Kona)
8Koblen Preble (Clif Bar)
9Cameron Beard (Hutch's)
10Mike Wilk (Durango Wheel Club)

 

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