Hecht wins US junior cyclo-cross title

Gage Hecht (Alpha Bicycle Co) claimed his sixth national championship title in cyclo-cross and his second in the junior 17-18 category on Sunday at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. The Colorado rider overcame a bad start to take the lead by the end of the first lap and then soloed to a narrow victory over Denzel Stephenson and Eric Brunner (Boulder Junior Cycling).

Spencer Petrov, who was expected to challenge Hecht for the victory, faded from second position to fourth after a mid-race crash.

"It feels amazing. I love the feeling I get from winning. It's great," Hecht said. "I knew the course would be technical and it would separate out quickly, so I wanted to make sure I was at the front of that separation from the get go. I didn't want to get stuck behind stuff. I didn't have a great start but was able to get up front."

Overnight rain soaked the arduous, tricky course, turning the course into a slipper mud-fest. The off-camber sections were particularly treacherous, and even Hecht crashed. But it was the riders who would make the fewest mistakes and take the best lines who would prevail. While Hecht had a healthy lead with one lap to go, Brunner and Stephenson closed to within seconds before the line, making for a nervous last lap for Hecht.

"I was super shocked by that, I knew they were strong, but I should have expected it more," Hecht said of their chase back. "But It was cool to see a bunch of Colorado guys up there with me."

Hecht kept his head down and kept pushing forward, and Stephenson out-sprinted his teammate Brunner for the silver medal just three seconds after Hecht crossed the line. Petrov was 35 seconds behind in fourth, with Hecht's teammate Evan Clouse rounding out the top five.


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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Gage Hecht0:39:23
2Denzel Stephenson0:39:26
3Eric Brunner0:39:29
4Spencer Petrov0:39:58
5Evan Clouse0:41:05
6Cameron Beard0:42:05
7Caleb Swartz0:42:23
8Ross Ellwood0:42:37
9Michael Owens0:42:49
10Cade Bickmore0:43:30
11Jack Tanner0:43:43
12Scott Mcgill0:44:39
13Colton Brookshire0:44:49
14George Schulz0:45:08
15Brayden Buchanan0:45:12
16Drew Sotebeer0:45:14
17Joshua Anderson0:45:39
18Cassidy Bailey0:45:45
19Henry CoppolilloRow 18 - Cell 2
20Tristan Greathouse0:46:22
21Clyde Logue0:46:40
22Kevin Goguen0:46:48
23Jordan Lewis0:46:50
24Jack Warner0:47:27
25Nicholas Beirne0:47:29
26Donovan Birky0:47:44
27Cameron Scott0:48:30
28Cole Davis0:48:53
29Ethan Storm0:49:29
30Ryan Aittaniemi0:49:34
31Tommy Steinebrunner0:49:55
32Donald Seib0:50:25
33Tate Knowles0:50:50
34Eli Gold0:51:10
35Eric Voigt0:51:49
36Henry Davis-1
37Garrett SmithRow 36 - Cell 2
38Zachary YoungRow 37 - Cell 2
39Charlie OrmsbyRow 38 - Cell 2
40Ethan DellamaestraRow 39 - Cell 2
41Collin SalleeRow 40 - Cell 2
42Johannes StromskiRow 41 - Cell 2
43Carter WarrenRow 42 - Cell 2
44Cole WeidenbachRow 43 - Cell 2
45Thomas CareyRow 44 - Cell 2
46Tyler CurtisRow 45 - Cell 2
47Zachary RossRow 46 - Cell 2
48Jeremy NorrisRow 47 - Cell 2
49Spencer MoavenzadehRow 48 - Cell 2
50Alexander ChristianRow 49 - Cell 2
51Aidan PounderRow 50 - Cell 2
52Simon LewisRow 51 - Cell 2
53Perry AndreRow 52 - Cell 2
54Paul HartnerRow 53 - Cell 2
55Eli HouseRow 54 - Cell 2
56Jacob BanksRow 55 - Cell 2
57Mark MylesRow 56 - Cell 2
58Christian NorvoldRow 57 - Cell 2
59William Hardin-2
60Nicolas PadillaRow 59 - Cell 2
61Jules GilliamRow 60 - Cell 2
62Sean McelroyRow 61 - Cell 2
63Luke ThomasRow 62 - Cell 2
64Jack WhiteRow 63 - Cell 2
DNFJack CrumpRow 64 - Cell 2

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Laura Weislo
Managing Editor

Laura Weislo has been with Cyclingnews since 2006 after making a switch from a career in science. As Managing Editor, she coordinates coverage for North American events and global news. As former elite-level road racer who dabbled in cyclo-cross and track, Laura has a passion for all three disciplines. When not working she likes to go camping and explore lesser traveled roads, paths and gravel tracks. Laura's specialises in covering doping, anti-doping, UCI governance and performing data analysis.

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