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Deja vu on NC GP day two

Brian Matter (Gear Grinder) proved to be the fastest man at the UCI C2 North Carolina Grand Prix double header when he won his second consecutive bunch sprint in Jackson Park, Hendersonville on Sunday. Italian Davide Frattini (Hudz-Subaru) and Ryan Knapp ( were forced to settle for second and third place respectively for the second consecutive day.

"I wanted to be ahead of Frattini going into the corner before the hill," said Matter. "Yesterday he led out the sprint and today I thought it was my turn to lead it out. It was the same as yesterday, you never know what is going to happen once you hit the pavement. There's nothing you can do except keep going hard and hope that he doesn't come around you."

Matter left nothing to chance when he moved into first position through the chicane inside the last 500 metres and climbed to the top of the last steep hill with Frattini on his wheel heading into the final corner. The pair opened up a slight advantage ahead the some 15 riders that made up the front group. Matters started his sprint first and held off Frattini all the way to the line. Knapp's finishing kick secured third place.

"I tried to attack at least once today but Brian and Ryan closed the gap with two laps to go," said Frattini. "After that we were five riders but it all came back together with big group on the last lap. I tried to stay close to the front and followed Brian when he took the lead. We came out of the last corner almost at the same time but he had a better punch and won."

The elite men's podium was identical to the previous day's race; despite arriving at the same conclusion, there were several difference to the course design and the tactics, however. Race organisers kept the course fast and fluid with lengthy straightaways and very few technical sections.

However, some course changes included the switching the direction of several corners, a tighter and twisty off-cambre descent that greeted the field as they exited the woods and the finishing shoot was much longer and wider.

Bryan Fawley (Dallas Bike Works/Park Place) opened the 60-minute race with a surprising attack that resulted in a narrow lead for nearly three quarters of the first lap.

A long line of predominantly south-east 'crossers followed in tow that included eventual top ten riders Matter, Frattini, Knapp along with Travis Livermon (Mock Orange Racing), Mark LaLonde (Cal Giant-Specialized), Eric Thompson (Maplelag Resort/Paramount Sports), Scott Frederick (Inland Construction), Brian Sheedy (Lees-McRae College/Hampton Trails), Greg Wittwer (Alan North American Cycling) and the current leader of the North Carolina Cyclo-cross series Will Black (Moots).

"I felt like I rode a smarter race today but had to work for it more," said Knapp, who acknowledged the tactical difference compared to the previous day. "Matter had good legs today and I was pleased to see attacks happening. It was different today and I think the course gave more opportunity for people to stay in the front group."

A combination of higher-paced efforts came from Matter, Frederick, Frattini and Knapp all resulted in minor separations in the front group. However, no riders were willing to put forth a sole effort for more than a lap allowing the dropped riders to reunite several times. The last lap started with a very large 15-rider front group and jockeying for position was key.

"I put in a few attacks and split the group but there were long pedaling sections in the wind and it all came back together," Matter said. "Frattini jumped and got a pretty good gap and I went pretty hard with lap three and two to go and that's why I wasn't quite as confident coming into the sprint because I used a couple matches chasing him down."

Frederick lead the field around the last half lap. Matter worked his way to the front through the wooded section and passed Frederick to take the lead through the technical chicane, up the steep ride-up and through the last corner. He started his sprint as soon as his front wheel hit the pavement with Frattini at his side however, the Italian was unable to come around him at the line.

Full Results
1Brian Matter (USA) Gear Grinder0:58:18
2Davide Frattini (Ita) Hudz-Subaru0:00:01
3Ryan Knapp (USA) BikeReg.com0:00:03
4Travis Livermon (USA) Mock Orange Racing0:00:04
5Mark Lalonde (USA) Specialized
6Eric Thompson (USA) Maplelag Resort/ Paramount Sports0:00:05
7Scott Frederick (USA) Inland Construction0:00:08
8Brian Sheedy (USA) Lees-McRae College/Hampton Trails0:00:09
9Greg Wittwer (USA) ALAN North America Cycling Team0:00:13
10Will Black (USA) Moots0:00:18
11Bryan Fawley (USA) Park Place Dealerships0:00:20
12Noah Niwinski (USA) Boone Velo0:00:21
13Mitchell Kersting (USA) Bob's Red Mill p/b Focus Bikes0:00:28
14Noah Metzler (USA) Globalbike p/b Catoma Adventure Shelters0:00:33
15Joshua Snead (USA) Bay 101-HRS-Rock Lobster0:00:35
16Lucas Livermon (USA) Mock Orange Bikes0:00:36
17Eric Wondergem (USA) Hup United/PF Bikes0:00:38
18Bradford Perley (USA) Maplelag Resort/ Paramount Sports0:00:41
19Robert Marion (USA) American Classic0:00:53
20Tim Mosher (USA) Champion System/Cannondale0:01:06
21Ryan Leach (USA) Hilton Head Cycling0:01:17
22Clayton Omer (USA) Papa Johns' Racing Team0:01:30
23Nathan Wyatt (USA) Carolina Fatz p/b Industry Nine0:01:33
24Alex Ryan (USA) Champion System/Cannondale0:01:37
25Charlie Storm (USA) Inland Construction0:01:41
26Andrew Reardon (USA) Van Dessel / Real Design0:01:47
27Eric Muehl (USA) Industry Nine Factory0:02:25
28Tristan Cowie (USA) Sycamore Cycles0:02:27
29Katriel Statman (USA) Pioneer S&M/Van Dessel/Feedback Sports0:02:30
30William Fyfe (USA) BBC p/b Wheelworx0:02:31
31Andy Applegate (USA) Champion System/Cannondale0:02:34
32Christopher Nevitt (USA) Bob's Red Mill0:02:36
33Josh Stevens (USA) Garneau Custom p/b Tyler's Tap Room0:02:43
34Eric Marland (USA) Boone Velo0:03:15
35Christopher Consorto (USA) Louis Garneau-Team TBB0:04:21
36Davy Yeater (USA) River City Bicycles-Cannondale0:04:32
37Mike Kennedy (USA) Bob's Red Mill0:05:17
38Mike Stewart (USA) Tri Cities Road Club0:07:09
39David McNeal (USA) Birmingham Bicycle Company0:08:32
40Robert Jameson (USA) Lees McRae College / Carroll Composites0:09:26
41Mark Babcock (USA)0:09:43
42Reid Beloni (USA) Gary Fisher/Subaru
43David Thomas (USA) Team Magnus

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Kirsten Frattini

Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in cycling from the community and grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all men's and women's races including Spring Classics, Grand Tours, World Championships and Olympic Games, and writes and edits news and features. As the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten also coordinates and oversees the global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.

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