Under clear blue Southern California skies, Xterra World Champion Lesley Paterson (Scott Bicycles) surprised the competition as she powered to a victory in the elite women's cross country race at the Bonelli Park Pro XCT on Saturday in San Dimas.
US Cup promoters changed up this year's cross country course, adding in climbing and new off camber sections on the five kilometer circuit. Most of the pro riders commented that the new layout was challenging and had a nice World Cup feel to it with its short punchy climbs and frequent rhythm changes.
Paterson, who came into the race as somewhat of an "X" factor left cross country World Cup racers and Olympians Emily Batty (Trek), Lea Davison (Specialized) and Annie Last (Trek) scratching their heads. Chloe Woodruff (Crank Bros.) put in a solid ride and landed in fourth on a women's podium that was loaded with credentials.
On the first lap, Batty, Davison and Last managed to open up a gap over the field, and it looked like the battle would be between these three cross country regulars. Meanwhile, Patterson was buried mid-pack after starting on the back row.
However, Patterson didn't seem to get the memo that these were North America's best female cross country racers, and the "Scottish rocket" bridged the gap to the lead trio on lap 2 of 5.
From there, a game of mouse ensued, and the four women tested one another. Then going into lap 3, Patterson began to apply the pressure and drove the pace, with only Batty able to respond.
Patterson kept the pressure on and slowly put distance between herself and Batty, extending her lead to over 20 seconds by the time she came across the finish line on the fifth and final lap.
Next in was Batty, followed by Davison, Woodruff and finally Last, nearly five minutes in the rear.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Lesley Paterson (USA) Scott Bikes||1:25:28|
|2||Emily Batty (Can) Trek Factory Racing||0:00:20|
|3||Lea Davison (USA) Specialized Racing||0:01:43|
|4||Chloe Woodruff (USA) Crankbrothers Race||0:04:45|
|5||Annie Last (GBr) Trek Factory Racing||0:05:45|
|6||Erin Huck (USA) Tokyo Joes||0:07:26|
|7||Judy Freeman (USA) Crankbrothers Race||0:08:23|
|8||Erica Tingey (USA)||0:08:33|
|9||Christina Gokey-Smith (USA) Colonels/Shoair||0:08:50|
|10||Nina Baum (USA) Stans No Tubes Women||0:10:01|
|11||Larissa Fitchett (USA) Lost Coast Brewery||0:10:43|
|12||Rebecca Gross (USA) Tough Girl/Scott||0:11:34|
|13||Krista Park (USA)||0:11:35|
|14||Shayna Powless (USA) Bmc||0:12:21|
|15||Karlee Gendron (Can) Trek Canada Mountain||0:15:05|
|16||Kata Skaggs (USA)||0:16:10|
|17||Amy Beisel (USA) Griggs Orthopedics||0:18:15|
|-1lap||Deidre York (USA) The Gear Movement|
|-2laps||Anna Dvorak (USA) Bear Valley Bikes|
|-2laps||Beth Utley (USA) Oro Valley Bicycle|
|-3laps||Vanessa Humic (USA) Stans No Tubes/Kenda|
|DNS||Jamie Busch (USA) Quadzilla Racing|
|DSQ||Erin Alders (USA) Liv/Giant|
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