Swiss Christian Heule snagged his second victory in three years at the USA's west coast season opener Star Crossed in Seattle, Washington. The National Champion out-played American top dogs Jeremy Powers (Cyclocrossworld.com) in second and former World silver medallist Jonathan Page (Planet Bike) in third.
With one lap to go the front group dwindled down to a mere six riders including Powers and Page along with current US National Champion Ryan Trebon (KONA), Troy Wells (Clif bar), Jacques-Maynes (Bissell). Page took a firm hold on the front of the train holding his position around the muddy corners with half a lap to go. Heule later joined him.
Trebon made a move, but Heule quickly followed him. Heule took a turn up front for the first time in the closing kilometres of the race. Several attacks continued around Heule as he waited patiently to make his one winning move in the last corners of the race. He had a small lead over chasers Powers and Page entering the finishing straightaway. All three in full sprint mode, Heule managed to hold off the chasing duo for what turned out to be a very well played manoeuvre for the win.
Mud slides in Seattle 'cross
The King County Marymoor Park Velodrome crowds gathered around the perimeter of the oval to catch a glimpse of heavy hitting 'cross talents as they line up to start round one of the North American Cyclo-Cross Trophy Series. Call-ups included Heule, Page and Powers along with US Under 23 National Champion Nick Weighall (California Giant Berry Farms), 2008 USGP winner Tim Johnson (Cyclocrossworld.com), former US National Champion Andy Jacques-Maynes (Bissell), Danish National Champion Joachim Parblo, the ever-strong Barry Wicks (KONA).
Lastly, the crowds cheered loudly when US National Champion Ryan Trebon
(KONA) took his place in the front row.
Seattle delivered traditional 'cross weather to the star-studded field. The 'Rainy City' dropped buckets over the some 75 riders who lined up under twilight hours. All wanted the opportunity to take on some of the toughest 'cross riders in the business. The course zigzagged its way round the perimeter of the velodrome and crossed back and forth through the inner oval providing plenty of viewing options of the spectators.
Powers headed out strong as he took the hole shot off the velodrome and onto the grass. Johnson hit the ground on the first lap but that did not stop him from getting back into the game. The former US national champion is known for having some of his best rides under rainy conditions such as these were. He was not the only rider to go down as the slick conditions caused multiple crashes on the first lap.
A front group of eight riders established themselves to include Powers, off the front early followed by Parblo Weighall, Wicks, Heule, Jacques-Maynes and Page. Noticeably missing from the chase group was both Johnson and Trebon who went down in separate crashes early in the race.
Jesse Anthony (Jamis), Chris Jones (Champion System) and Troy Wells (Clif Bar) joined the two powerhouse 'crossers. All the four riders eventually caught up to the leaders.
Mid-race, the rain continued to pour down on the field as Page took a timely flyer. He was quickly joined by Weighall. However, the bounding leaps of Trebon was all it took to bring the trio back in contact. Attacks coming from the front group of ten riders forced the speeds to stay high for the duration of the 60-minute race.
Page, Trebon, Heule and Jacques-Maynes made a bid for a breakaway and succeeded for the next three laps. An array of untimely accidents marred the fourth lap. Wells made his way across to the breakaway adding to the horsepower in the group and took a timely opportunity to attack. However, when Page made contact Wells crashed leaving the Page up front alone.
A chasing Trebon found himself caught up in the crash with Wells. Both riders picked themselves up and mustered up the strength to catch Page, who also crashed while off the front.
The lead position continued to rotate through the front group as each rider attempted a jump to gain an advantage. The final few laps say one small break after another but all riders seemed too evenly matched to gain time over the next. In the end, it was the fastest man who would take the group kick to the line.
The NACT series round two continues with Rad Racing Gran Prix of Cyclo-cross held in Lakewood, Washington on Sunday.
|1||Christian Heule (Swi) Rendementhypo Cycling Team||1:04:44|
|2||Jeremy Powers (USA) Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld||0:00:01|
|3||Jonathan Page (USA) Planet Bike|
|4||Ryan Trebon (USA) Kona||0:00:06|
|5||Andy Jacques-Maynes (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling||0:00:13|
|6||Troy Wells (USA) Clif Bar||0:00:51|
|7||Jesse Anthony (USA) Jamis Bicycles||0:01:04|
|8||Russell Stevenson (USA) Benaroya Research Institute Cycling Team||0:01:19|
|9||Aaron Schooler (Can) Team H&R Block-Kona||0:01:30|
|10||Tyler Trace (Can) Trek Red Truck||0:01:43|
|11||Craig Richey (Can) Blue Competition Cycles P/B Neverblue||0:02:17|
|12||Molly Cameron (USA) Portland Bicycle Studio||0:02:20|
|13||James Driscoll (USA) Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld||0:02:39|
|14||Logan Wetzel (USA) Benaroya Research Institute||0:02:45|
|15||Barry Wicks (USA) Kona||0:02:53|
|16||Sean Babcock (USA) Team S&M||0:02:59|
|17||Steve Fisher (USA) Rad Racing Nw/Hagens Berman||0:03:24|
|18||Davy Yeater (USA) River City Bicycles||0:03:27|
|19||Shannon Skerritt (USA) Trek/Vw/Bikegallery||0:03:49|
|20||Joachim Parbo (Den) Ccv Leopard Cycles||0:04:10|
|21||Kevin Bradford-Parish (USA) Emdesports.Com|
|22||Nicholas Weighall (USA) California Giant Berry Farms/Specialized||0:04:28|
|23||Jeremy Ferguson (USA)||0:04:29|
|24||Jake Wells (USA) Mafiaracing.Com||0:04:46|
|25||Ryan Iddings (USA) Lapierre Usa||0:04:55|
|26||Kevin Noiles (Can) La Bicicletta Pro Shop||0:05:00|
|27||Toby Swanson (USA) Benaroya Research Institute Cycling Team||0:05:04|
|28||Nathan Bannerman (USA) Hagens Berman||0:05:16|
|29||Brett Nichols (USA) Bode||0:05:19|
|30||Shaun Adamson (Can) Juventus||0:05:31|
|31||Aaron Bradford (USA) Onsite Ultrasound Racing||0:05:48|
|32||Thomas Skinner (Can) Oak Bay Bikes||0:05:49|
|33||Spencer Paxson (USA) Team S&M Young Guns||0:05:59|
|34||Kevin Hulick (USA) Vanilla Bicycles||0:06:09|
|35||Brett Luelling (USA) Capitol Subaru Cycling||0:06:10|
|36||Morgan Schmitt (USA) Bissell Pro Cycling||0:06:37|
|-1 Lap||Ian Terry (USA) Rad Racing Nw/Hagens Berman|
|-1 Lap||Ryan Weaver (USA) River City Bicycles|
|-1 Lap||Nick Berry (Can) Mighty Cycling|
|-1 Lap||Chris Parrish (USA) Hagens Berman Llp|
|-1 Lap||John Curry (USA) G.A.S./Intrinsik|
|-1 Lap||James C Birkenbuel (USA) Alki Rubicon Racing|
|-1 Lap||Matthew Davis (USA) Mad Duck/Momenta Training|
|-1 Lap||Joshua Berry (USA) Team Bode|
|-2 Laps||Westley Richards (USA) Kryki Sports/Lenovo|
|-2 Laps||Matthew Fox (USA) Sunnyside Sports|
|-2 Laps||Cody Peterson (USA) Hutchs Bicycles|
|-2 Laps||Kyle Mcgilvray (USA) Old Town Bicycle|
|-2 Laps||Duncan Mcgovern (USA) Noreast Cycling|
|-2 Laps||John-Christian Flack (USA) The Valley Athletic Club|
|-3 Laps||David Pilz (USA) Gentle Lovers|
|-3 Laps||Jiri Senkyrik (USA)|
|-3 Laps||Scotty Carlile (USA) Tai Cycling/Genr8|
|-3 Laps||Ben Dodge (USA) Sugar Crm|
|-3 Laps||Landon Erickson (USA) Cucina Fresca|
|-2 Laps||Eric Emsky (USA) Rad Racing/Hagens Berman|
|-2 Laps||Aaron Tuckerman (NZl) Landrover-Orbea|
|-2 Laps||Mark Blackwelder (USA) Gentle Lovers|
|-3 Laps||Sean Worsech (USA) Rad Racing|
|-4 Laps||Tim Woods (USA) Bicycle Centres/Collision 1|
|-4 Laps||Craig Fowler (USA) Chamois Shake Presented By Ubrdo|
|-4 Laps||Matt Wittler (USA) Lost Coast Brewery/Marin Bikes|
|-5 Laps||Dan Mensher (USA) Gentle Lovers|
|DNF||Tim Johnson (USA) Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld|
|DNF||Chris Sheppard (Can) Santa Cruz/Shimano/Wtb|
|DNF||Michael Sayers (USA) Amgen/Giant Masters Cycling Team|
|DNF||Drew Mackenzie (Can) Island Racing Club|
|DNF||Christopher Ragusa (USA) Ccb Volkswagen|
|DNF||Dan Skinner (Can) Louis Garneau/Evolution|
|DNF||Jonathan Baker (USA)|
|DNS||Erik Tonkin (USA) Kona|
|DNS||Kris Sneddon (Can) Kona|
|DNS||Jeff Anderson (USA) Team Cucina Fresca|
|DNS||Brandon Mart (USA) Team Ride For A Reason|
|DNS||Ben Thompson (USA)|
|DNS||Steven Hunter (USA) Veloshop|
|DNS||Russell Anderson (Can) Oak Bay Bikes|
|DNS||Ben Chaddock (Can) Whitman College Cycling Team|
|DNS||Michael Benno (USA) Veloce / Felt Racing|
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