Van Gilder busts out her winning sprint

Laura van Gilder (C3 Athletes Serving Athletes) kicked off the season winning Saturday in Trexlertown, Pennsylvania. She defeated Mo Bruno-Roy in a two-up sprint and saw teammate Deidre Winfield cruise in for third place.

"I don't always look at the course as an opportunity to sprint, I just look to see where my strengths are," said Van Gilder. "This particular course was more of a roadie type course and I did plan my move for the end to try to beat her in the sprint. But I think the next time we race together you will probably see a different tactic."

The women's race donned a handful of key national contenders amongst a healthy some 40 riders who lined up to start the season opener. It was no surprise to see a select group of five riders led by Bruno-Roy, Van Gilder and Winfield along with Rebecca Wellons (Team Plan C), Arley Kemmerer (Hub
Racing) and Kristin Gavin (Human Zoom).

"It's the first race of the year for a lot of us and Mo's a great competitor and I never put her to the sides or discount her ability," said Van Gilder. "With having a teammate like Dede behind us I thought, 'I'm going to let Mo do all the work.' Things can happen and it's not a cut and dry race. You can have flats or mechanicals and I really just wanted to get one [win] under my belt."

Bruno-Roy took control of the race and set a pace strong enough to reduce the front-runners down to a more manageable three -- or not! She found herself followed by teammates Van Gilder and Winfield. One extra burst of power was enough to shed Winfield from the pursuit of victory however, Bruno-Roy had to contend one of the fastest sprinters in the country.

"It was really fast course overall and exposed to the sun," said Bruno-Roy. "Laura Van Gilder sat on my wheel the whole race and I couldn't let up because it would have been really hard with both her and Winfield together. They are smart racers."

"I have to race to my strengths and that's what they are," she continued.
"Mo's a great mud rider and a runner and today those elements weren't there but when we do see those elements I'm going to have my work cut out for me. There won't be any gifts after me sitting on her today but you have to ride the race to win and I would be foolish to miss an opportunity to try and win."

Swipe to scroll horizontally
1Laura Van Gilder (USA) C3-Athletes Serving Athletes0:42:32
2Maureen Bruno Roy (USA) MM Racing-Seven Cycles-Wheelworks0:00:03
3Deidre Winfield (USA) C3-Athletes Serving Athletes0:00:29
4Rebecca Wellons (USA) Team Plan C0:00:43
5Kristin Gavin (USA) Human Zoom-Pabst Blue Ribbon0:01:17
6Arley Kemmerer (USA) Hub Racing0:01:37
7Carolyn Popovic (USA) Cape Atlantic Racing/beaconcycling.com0:01:49
8Nikki Thiemann (USA) Human Zoom-Pabst Blue Ribbon0:02:18
9Vicki Thomas (Can) Ottawa Cross0:02:21
10Kacey Mandefield (USA)0:03:03
11Erica Yozell Miller (USA) South Mountain Cycles0:03:15
12Lauri Webber (USA) Secret Henry's Team0:03:44
13Jennifer Maxwell (USA) ATAC Sportswear p/b The Bike Rack0:03:53
14Patricia Buerkle (USA) Haymarket Bicycles0:04:00
15Jessica Singerman (USA) Wissahickon0:04:19
16Kristine Church (USA) Human Zoom-Pabst Blue Ribbon0:04:28
17Beth Mason (USA) Verge Test Pilot0:05:02
18Julie Kuliecza (USA) Alan North America Cycling0:05:10
19Diane Grim (USA) C3-Athletes Serving Athletes0:05:34
20Jill Waggett (USA) Guy's Racing Club0:05:39
21Kristy Swope (USA) Team EPS/CSS p/b Brielle Cyclery0:05:51

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Kirsten Frattini
Deputy Editor

Kirsten Frattini is the Deputy Editor of Cyclingnews, overseeing the global racing content plan.

Kirsten has a background in Kinesiology and Health Science. She has been involved in cycling from the community and grassroots level to professional cycling's biggest races, reporting on the WorldTour, Spring Classics, Tours de France, World Championships and Olympic Games.

She began her sports journalism career with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. In 2018, Kirsten became Women's Editor – overseeing the content strategy, race coverage and growth of women's professional cycling – before becoming Deputy Editor in 2023.

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