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Van Gilder victorious in Providence

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Van Gilder picks up the big victory

Van Gilder picks up the big victory (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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And after the ceremony

And after the ceremony (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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Smith was first out of the gate

Smith was first out of the gate (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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Van Gilder leads up the first stairs

Van Gilder leads up the first stairs (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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McConneloug and Van Gilder

McConneloug and Van Gilder (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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Not her first time at this dance

Not her first time at this dance (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)
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The podium (L to R): McConneloug, Van Gilder, Annis

The podium (L to R): McConneloug, Van Gilder, Annis (Image credit: Natalia Boltukhova/Pedal Power Photography)

A duel between Laura Van Gilder and Mary McConneloug, ended in the road rider's favour after just over 40 minutes of racing today in Providence. The duo were seemingly stuck together with a sprint, looking to be the likely outcome, but a surge from Van Gilder in the final laps was enough to gap McConneloug and earn the Mellow Mushroom rider the win.

Elite Women

From before the race was even started, it was clear that today was going to be an all-out battle with the top step on the podium wide open. The highlights in the starting blocks included local heroes, Maureen Bruno Roy (Bob’s Red Mill p/b Seven Cycles), Andrea Smith (LadiesFirst Racing), Sally Annis (crossresults.com p/b JRA Cyclces), Sara Bresnick (Embrocation Cycling Journal) and the triumphant return of Mary McConneloug (Kenda/Seven/NoTubes) as well as some of the top racers from the Mid-Atlantic in the people of Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom p/b C3) and Arley Kemmerer (C3/Athletes Serving Athletes).

At the start, it was Smith, Van Gilder and Annis at the front, setting a torrid pace – stretching the field out in the first set of corners. The group of three drove the pace hard and held a chasing group of Bruno Roy, Bresnick and McConneloug at bay.

Each of the riders at the front was taking their turn, maintaining a high pace, knowing that their best chance would come if the group held together and the group behind was held at arm’s length. It seemed like it would be a formality that the podium would be the lead group until Smith lost control in an off-cambered downhill corner just after the pit. Smith lost a lot of time with a slow recovery and saw her podium hopes slip away. Ahead of her, Mary McConneloug turned up the heat, attacking her chasing group and making contact with the leaders. Shorly after McConneloug took up her place in the front group, Annis dropped off the pace just a little.

With Smith fighting to come back from well behind and Annis slightly off the pace, it became a battle between Van Gilder, a specialist in the sprint and a master tactician and McConneloug, whose forte is handling her bike and finds victory through smooth and conservative racing. Van Gilder, knowing that she had her finishing speed as an ace in the hole, was comfortable following McConneloug through the course. Van Gilder made only one move – she came around McConneloug heading into the final section of grass and put two bike lengths between them almost immediately and that was enough space.

Van Gilder turned those two bike lengths into seven seconds and crossed the line first for her first UCI C1 victory of the season. McConneloug was happy with her second-place while Annis crossed the line third. Smith came back from her crash and mechanical and finished seventh.

Full Results
1Laura Van Gilder (USA) C3 p/b Mellow Mushroom0:40:30
2Mary McConneloug (USA) Kenda-Seven-NoTubes0:00:07
3Sally Annis (USA) crossresults.com p/b JRA Cycles0:00:55
4Crystal Anthony (USA) LadiesFirst Racing0:01:13
5Sara Bresnick-Zocchi (USA) Embrocationcycling.com0:01:20
6Nicole Thiemann (USA) Team CF0:01:35
7Andrea Smith (USA) LadiesFirst Racing0:01:52
8Arley Kemmerer (USA) C3 - Athletes Serving Athletes0:02:07
9Catherine Sterling (USA) Bikeman.com0:02:15
10Maureen Bruno Roy (USA) Bob's Red Mill p/b Seven Cycles0:02:26
11Anna Barensfeld (USA) Sterling CX p/b Sendmail0:02:37
12Stacey Barbossa (USA) Elite Endurance Training Systems
13Patricia Buerkle (USA) VA Asset Group p/b Artemis - Trek0:03:10
14Elle Anderson (USA) LadiesFirst Racing
15Brittlee Bowman (USA) crossresults.com p/b JRA Cycles0:03:21
16Cassandra Maximenko (USA) Silverbull Centralwheel0:03:27
17Rebecca Wellons (USA) Quad Cycles0:03:32
18Melissa Ross (USA) Team Kenda Tire p/b Geargrinder0:03:34
19Jena Greaser (USA) NorEast Cycling0:03:41
20Frances Morrison (USA) J.A.M. Fund-NCC0:03:54
21Laura Ralston (GBr) MIT Cycling-FXDD
22Christina Tamilio (USA) LadiesFirst Racing0:04:15
23Lex Albrecht (Can) Juvederm-Specialized-Mazda0:04:32
24Molly Hurford (USA) Team Rockstar Games-Signature Cycles0:04:53
25Sarah Krzysiak (USA) nycross.com0:05:03
26Allison Snooks (USA) crossresults.com0:05:10
27Jocelyn Mauldin (USA) NEBC p/b Cycle Loft0:05:19
28Elizabeth White (USA) Blue Steel Cyclery0:05:20
29Patricia Dowd (USA) Team REP-I COWBELL CX0:05:25
30Kristine Church (USA) Human Zoom0:06:00
31Jenny Ives (USA) Verge Sport-Test Pilot0:06:10
32Vanessa McCaffery (USA) Corning-NoTubes Race Team-Swan Cycles
33Marian Jamison (USA) LadiesFirst Racing0:06:19
34Kelly Chang (USA) SyCip0:06:43
35Giulia Righi (Ita) Silver Bull-Central Wheel of Farmington CT0:07:30
36Anna Milkowski (USA) Wheelworks Racing
37Nancy Labbe-Giguere (Can) LadiesFirst Racing

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