Catharine Pendrel (Luna) won the elite women's cross country race at the Windham, New York round of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup on Sunday afternoon. Pendrel finished ahead of Tanja Zakelj (Unior Tools) and Annika Langvad (Specialized).
"It feels good to be back on the top at a World Cup. I was trying not to get distracted by that while out there racing," said Pendrel to Cyclingnews. "I felt good today."
From the start, Pendrel and World Cup leader Jolanda Neff (Liv Giant) set the pace, but Pendrel was climbing better than last weekend's Mont-Sainte-Anne World Cup winner Neff.
On the second lap, Pendrel climbed away from Neff and Langvad, who together chased the Canadian.
"Yes, it was my strategy to go from the start," said Pendrel after the race. "I could tell Jolanda was breathing hard on the first climb. I think it hurt her on the descent because I was like 'oh I can pass you now'. I was able to open a gap. Then it was nice not to have people pushing me the whole way. I felt better being off the front."
Neff paid for her early efforts and started to fade, dropping as far back as seventh place mid-race.
Zakelj, on the other hand, only got stronger as the race went on.
Pendrel's strategy worked as she would spend the entire race off the front solo, without pressure from anyone too close to her.
Going into the final of five total laps, Pendrel led Langvad by more than 30 seconds and Zakelj by one minute.
Neff got a second wind and worked her way back up into the top five as she raced with her teammate Maja Wloszczowska (Liv Giant) and Blaza Klemencic (Feenstra Felt PB Kenda Bike Team).
On the final lap, Langvad crashed as she transitioned from a bright ski slope to a dark, wooded singletrack section, but she quickly picked herself up and kept racing.
"I crashed on the last lap where it went from light to dark," said Langvad. "My front wheel slid out in a corner, but I was on my feet in like two seconds."
However, Zakelj proved too strong and the determined Slovenian surged to pass Langvad at the top of the last climb. Zakelj would hold on during the descent to take second place behind Pendrel and ahead of world marathon champion Langvad.
"It was an amazing last lap. I think if I couldn't have seen Annika, I would not have been able to go so far out of my zone. I knew Jolanda was strong behind me, too," said Zakelj. "On the last downhill, I stepped on my pedals and went as hard as I could. I gave it everything I had, but tried to be careful and not make mistakes on that last descent. I had my mind in the right place."
Langvad said, "Tanja passed me on the last climb to the feed zone. I'm still in a build-up phase to the Worlds. I can't afford too many of those surges so I just stayed within my limits and kept my rhythm. It was my tactic from the beginning and I executed perfectly, so I'm pleased."
Neff and Klemencic attacked each other several times on the last climb, each one wanting to get ahead of the other going into the final descent. Neff ultimately won out over the fatigued Klemencic and rode to the finish in fourth place.
Neff said, "I just tried to do a good race today. I went too fast in the beginning, but in the end I could go fast again."
Klemencic was still happy to finish fifth for her best World Cup finish of the season.
"Four years ago, this was my first race on the podium. It's the first time this year I'm on the podium, so I'm happy," said Klemencic. "This is one of the best courses for me, with lots of climbing - it's not so technical."
Davison finished as the top American rider at the home US World Cup, even after stopping for a wheel change at the beginning of second lap. Though she lost some time and places, she worked her way back up to seventh place.
"I don't know if I had a flat actually," said Davison after the finish. "I have this thing at this course where I'm always on the gravel up through the start/finish thinking that my back wheel feels squishy and that I don't want to ride up this whole hill on a soft tire."
"So I changed it. I kind of regret that because it turns out that it wasn't really flat. It was my mind playing tricks on me. But the important thing is that I had a great start and good legs and I fought back from barely in the top 20."
With her top five finish, Neff secured the elite women's World Cup overall title. She has 1050 points to Pendrel's 790. Last year's World Cup winner Zakelj is in third with 788 points.
"It's amazing that I took the overall World Cup at this race," said Neff, who is still technically an under 23 racer.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Catharine Pendrel (Can) Luna Pro Team||1:25:47|
|2||Tanja Zakelj (Slo) Unior Tools Team||0:00:29|
|3||Annika Langvad (Den) Specialized Racing XC||0:00:32|
|4||Jolanda Neff* (Swi) Liv Pro XC Team||0:00:36|
|5||Blaza Klemencic (Slo) Feenstra Felt Pb Kenda Bike Team||0:01:24|
|6||Maja Wloszczowska (Pol) Liv Pro XC Team||0:01:45|
|7||Lea Davison (USA) Specialized Racing XC||0:01:52|
|8||Emily Batty (Can) Trek Factory Racing||0:02:01|
|9||Sabine Spitz (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||0:02:24|
|10||Irina Kalentieva (Rus)||0:02:36|
|11||Adelheid Morath (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||0:02:45|
|12||Georgia Gould (USA) Luna Pro Team||0:02:59|
|13||Annie Last (GBr) Trek Factory Racing||0:03:22|
|14||Katarzyna Solus-Miskowicz (Pol) Kross Racing Team||0:03:23|
|15||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||0:04:22|
|16||Julie Bresset (Fra) BH-Suntour-KMC||0:04:29|
|17||Elisabeth Osl (Aut) Ghost Factory Racing||0:04:59|
|18||Githa Michiels (Bel) Trek-KMC Trade Team||0:05:08|
|19||Daniela Campuzano (Mex)||0:05:10|
|20||Sandra Walter (Can)||0:05:23|
|21||Katrin Leumann (Swi) Ghost Factory Racing||0:05:45|
|22||Janka Keseg Stevkova (Svk)||0:06:17|
|23||Tereza Hurikova (Cze) Specialized Racing XC||0:06:19|
|24||Chloe Woodruff (USA)||0:06:25|
|25||Erin Huck (USA)||0:06:33|
|26||Rose Grant (USA)||0:06:50|
|27||Lene Byberg (Nor)||0:07:02|
|28||Rebecca Henderson (Aus) Trek Factory Racing||0:07:45|
|29||Kathrin Stirnemann (Swi) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||0:08:03|
|30||Larissa Connors (USA)||0:08:37|
|31||Nathalie Schneitter (Swi) Team Colnago Sudtirol||0:09:07|
|32||Raiza Goulao-Henrique (Bra)||0:09:28|
|33||Karla Stepanova (Cze)||0:10:09|
|34||Hanna Klein (Ger) BH-Suntour-KMC||0:10:19|
|35||Adriana Rojas (CRc)||0:10:41|
|36||Jitka Skarnitzlova (Cze)||0:11:01|
|37||Isabella Moreira Lacerda (Bra)||0:11:28|
|38||Laura Lorenza Morfin Macouzet (Mex)||0:11:47|
|39||Agustina Maria Apaza (Arg)||0:12:02|
|40||Erika Fernanda Gramiscelli (Bra)||0:12:58|
|41||Cindy Montambault (Can)||0:13:21|
|42||Evelyn Dong (USA)||0:13:31|
|43||Amanda Sin (Can) Scott-3Rox Racing|
|44||Mandy Dreyer (Can)||0:16:14|
|45||Erica Zaveta (USA)||0:16:45|
|-1lap||Rebecca Beaumont (Can)|
|-1lap||Amy Beisel (USA)|
|-1lap||Erica Tingey (USA)|
|-1lap||Mio Suemasa (Jpn) Unior Tools Team|
|-1lap||Alexandra Gabriela Serrano Rodriguez (Ecu)|
|-2laps||Andréanne Pichette (Can)|
|-4laps||Laura Valentina Abril Restrepo (Col)|
|DNF||Eva Lechner (Ita) Team Colnago Sudtirol|
|DNF||Mikaela Kofman (Can) Scott-3Rox Racing|
|DNS||Karlee Gendron (Can)|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Luna Pro Team||75||pts|
|2||Specialized Racing XC||64|
|3||Liv Pro XC Team||56|
|4||Trek Factory Racing||44|
|5||Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||44|
|6||Unior Tools Team||35|
|7||Feenstra Felt Pb Kenda Bike Team||28|
|8||Ghost Factory Racing||24|
|9||Kross Racing Team||17|
|11||Trek-KMC Trade Team||13|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Jolanda Neff* (Swi) Liv Pro XC Team||1050||pts|
|2||Catharine Pendrel (Can) Luna Pro Team||790|
|3||Tanja Zakelj (Slo) Unior Tools Team||788|
|4||Emily Batty (Can) Trek Factory Racing||700|
|5||Sabine Spitz (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||680|
|6||Maja Wloszczowska (Pol) Liv Pro XC Team||668|
|7||Annika Langvad (Den) Specialized Racing XC||660|
|8||Irina Kalentieva (Rus)||610|
|9||Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjaa (Nor) Multivan Merida Biking Team||560|
|10||Blaza Klemencic (Slo) Feenstra Felt Pb Kenda Bike Team||545|
|11||Katrin Leumann (Swi) Ghost Factory Racing||519|
|12||Eva Lechner (Ita) Team Colnago Sudtirol||512|
|13||Pauline Ferrand Prevot* (Fra) Liv Pro XC Team||500|
|14||Elisabeth Osl (Aut) Ghost Factory Racing||481|
|15||Georgia Gould (USA) Luna Pro Team||449|
|16||Adelheid Morath (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||437|
|17||Tereza Hurikova (Cze) Specialized Racing XC||403|
|18||Alexandra Engen (Swe) Ghost Factory Racing||393|
|19||Rebecca Henderson (Aus) Trek Factory Racing||387|
|20||Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team||380|
|21||Kathrin Stirnemann (Swi) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||378|
|22||Hanna Klein (Ger) BH-Suntour-KMC||316|
|23||Julie Bresset (Fra) BH-Suntour-KMC||312|
|24||Daniela Campuzano (Mex)||296|
|25||Katarzyna Solus-Miskowicz (Pol) Kross Racing Team||286|
|26||Lea Davison (USA) Specialized Racing XC||270|
|27||Githa Michiels (Bel) Trek-KMC Trade Team||258|
|28||Mikaela Kofman (Can) Scott-3Rox Racing||202|
|29||Janka Keseg Stevkova (Svk)||198|
|30||Erin Huck (USA)||187|
|31||Kate Fluker (NZl)||186|
|32||Lene Byberg (Nor)||180|
|33||Serena Calvetti (Ita)||178|
|34||Annie Last (GBr) Trek Factory Racing||170|
|35||Evelyn Dong (USA)||154|
|36||Esther Süss (Swi) Wheeler - Ixs Team||152|
|37||Barbara Benko (Hun) Focus XC Team||150|
|38||Paula Gorycka (Pol) 4F Racing Team||148|
|39||Sandra Walter (Can)||146|
|40||Ekateryna Anoshina (Rus)||145|
|41||Mariske Strauss (RSA) Orange Monkey Pro Team||144|
|42||Corina Gantenbein (Swi) Fischer-BMC||138|
|43||Karla Stepanova (Cze)||131|
|44||Tory Thomas (Aus)||125|
|45||Laura Lorenza Morfin Macouzet (Mex)||117|
|46||Chloe Woodruff (USA)||116|
|47||Nina Wrobel (Ger)||112|
|48||Vera Andreeva (Rus)||112|
|49||Alice Pirard (Bel) Team Merida Wallonie MTB||111|
|50||Chengyuan Ren (Chn)||108|
|51||Agustina Maria Apaza (Arg)||106|
|52||Samara Sheppard (NZl) KTM Houffalize Team||104|
|53||Jitka Skarnitzlova (Cze)||104|
|54||Nathalie Schneitter (Swi) Team Colnago Sudtirol||102|
|55||Cindy Montambault (Can)||102|
|56||Mio Suemasa (Jpn) Unior Tools Team||95|
|57||Rose Grant (USA)||88|
|58||Raiza Goulao-Henrique (Bra)||87|
|59||Anne Terpstra (Ned) Betch.Nl Superior Brentjens MTB Racing Team||82|
|60||Amanda Sin (Can) Scott-3Rox Racing||65|
|61||Isabella Moreira Lacerda (Bra)||65|
|62||Katherine O'neill (NZl)||64|
|63||Michelle Hediger (Swi) Fischer-BMC||58|
|64||Qinglan Shi (Chn)||56|
|65||Andréanne Pichette (Can)||55|
|66||Karen Hanlen (NZl)||54|
|67||Peta Mullens (Aus) Team Colnago Sudtirol||54|
|68||Anna Oberparleiter (Ita)||53|
|69||Erika Fernanda Gramiscelli (Bra)||53|
|70||Rocio Martin Rodriguez (Spa)||52|
|71||Sarah Riley (Aus)||50|
|72||Tracy Moseley (GBr)||48|
|73||Larissa Connors (USA)||46|
|74||Rebecca Beaumont (Can)||46|
|75||Mandy Dreyer (Can)||45|
|76||Anna Szafraniec (Pol) Kross Racing Team||44|
|77||Elisabeth Brandau (Ger)||40|
|78||Iryna Popova (Ukr) Cycling Club Roma MTB Team||39|
|79||Amy Beisel (USA)||38|
|80||Alexandra Gabriela Serrano Rodriguez (Ecu)||37|
|81||Adriana Rojas (CRc)||36|
|82||Marie-Helene Premont (Can)||36|
|83||Laura Valentina Abril Restrepo (Col)||36|
|84||Anna Villar Argente (Spa)||29|
|85||Lucie Vesela (Cze)||27|
|86||Pavlina Sulcova (Cze)||26|
|87||Nataliia Krompets (Ukr) Isd MTB Team||24|
|88||Erica Zaveta (USA)||23|
|89||Erica Tingey (USA)||20|
|90||Aleksandra Dawidowicz (Pol)||18|
|91||Elisa Otter (USA)||15|
|92||Hielke Elferink (Ned)||15|
|93||Marine Groccia (Swi)||14|
|94||Lenka Bulisova (Cze)||9|
|95||Elvira Khayrullina (Rus)||9|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Liv Pro XC Team||411||pts|
|2||Luna Pro Team||302|
|3||Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team||278|
|4||Ghost Factory Racing||273|
|5||Specialized Racing XC||253|
|6||Trek Factory Racing||234|
|7||Unior Tools Team||161|
|8||Feenstra Felt Pb Kenda Bike Team||115|
|9||Multivan Merida Biking Team||102|
|10||Team Colnago Sudtirol||95|
|12||Kross Racing Team||55|
|13||Trek-KMC Trade Team||41|
|16||Orange Monkey Pro Team||20|
|17||Wheeler - Ixs Team||19|
|18||Focus XC Team||17|
|19||4F Racing Team||13|
|20||Ktm Houffalize Team||11|
|21||Team Merida Wallonie Mtb||8|
|22||Betch.Nl Superior Brentjens Mtb Racing Team||7|
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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews. She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.
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