Clara Honsinger ends Katie Compton's 15-year winning streak at US cyclo-cross championships

Clara Honsinger (Team S&M CX Sellwood Cycle Repa) ended Katie Compton’s 15-year winning streak at USA Cycling Cyclo-cross National Championships in Lakewood, Washington on Sunday. Honsigner soloed to her first elite women’s cyclo-cross title ahead of Rebecca Fahringer (Kona Maxxis Shimano) with Compton finishing third.

"It's not a changing of the guard. It's a progression of cyclo-cross. We are all still out here racing together. It's just a little switch-up of what it's been the last years," Honsinger said in a post-race interview.

"Everyone is congratulating me. It's awesome. I don't think I've even come to recognise this win yet. For the entire race, I was just trying to hold it smooth. Even coming down the finishing stretch I was giving high-fives but still trying to be careful. I just had to make it to the finish line."

In an emotional finale, Compton finished the race in third place giving high-fives to the crowds of fans who lined the finishing straightaway and who cheered for her all the way across the line.

How it unfolded

It all started just as we expected. Katie Compton (Trek-KFC Racing) blasted down the off-camber descent and cut a line across Courtney McFadden (Pivot Maxxis p/b Stans NoTube) that must have looked like a blur. 

But as the dust settled through the first lap there were two things that were clear; Compton began to struggle in what looked like an off-day and her rivals were not going to just hand her a 16th consecutive victory.

McFadden caught Compton on the steep run-up featured at the start of the circuit and a group that also included Rebecca Fahringer (Kona Maxxis Shimano), Clara Honsigner (Team S&M CX Sellwood Cycle Repa) and Kaitlin Keough (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld) surrounded the 15-time defending champion as they raced into the second lap.

Fahringer pushed open a small gap at the start of the second lap, but Compton did not immediately respond. Instead it was Honsigner that bridged up to the leader on the flatter sections through the park. 

Honsinger led the pair through the sand and distanced Fahringer slightly, but the latter caught back up on the run-up. Fahringer lost contact with Honsinger again over the top of the run-up and then crashed later in the lap, causing her to lose an additional several seconds. 

Compton pulled away from the chase group and slowly tried to close the 15-second gap to the two front runners heading into the third lap. However, over the subsequent laps she lost time and the gap opened up to some 30 seconds by the end of the third lap.

Honsigner covered the subsequent laps with strength, technical skill and ease to build a lead of more than 30 seconds over runner-up Fahringer and an additional minute to Compton and McFadden, on her way to her first elite women's national cyclo-cross title.

More to follow…

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Pos.Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Clara Honsinger (Team S&M CX Sellwood Cycle Repa) 0:50:16
2Rebecca Fahringer (Kona Maxxis Shimano) 0:00:29
3Katherine Compton (KFC Racing p/b Trek/Knight) 0:01:20
4Courtenay Mcfadden (Pivot Maxxis pb Stans NoTubes) 0:02:05
5Kaitlin Keough (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld) 0:03:10
6Sunny Gilbert (Pactimo/ Colorado Proud) 0:04:16
7Samantha Runnels (Squid x Eliel) 0:04:22
8Caroline Nolan (Voler / Easton / HRS / Rock Lob) 0:04:30
9Amanda Nauman (SDG - Muscle Monster) 0:04:32
10Caitlin Bernstein (Easton/ Velocio/ MCGOVERN Cycle) 0:04:39
11Crystal Anthony (Liv Racing) 0:04:45
12Sarah Sturm (Specialized + Ten Speed Hero) 0:05:07
13Tricia Fleischer (Trek Cyclocross Collective) 0:05:18
14Stephanie Taplin (Indigenous Wheel Co Dirt Team) 0:05:25
15Carla Williams (Deschutes Brewery Cyclocross Te) 0:05:30
16Raylyn Nuss (MAAP | MINI U S Cyclocross Pro) 0:05:32
17Emily Schaldach (BitchNGrit: Ten Speed Hero and) 0:05:59
18Erica Zaveta (The Pony Shop p/b KPMG) 0:06:20
19Danielle Arman (Tenspeed Hero p/b Bitchstix) 0:06:35
20Sophie Russenberger (Team S&M CX Sellwood Cycle Repa) 0:06:59
21Beth ann Orton (Team S&M CX Sellwood Cycle Repa) 0:07:13
22Allison Arensman (JA King Cyclocross) 0:07:44
23Heidi Franz (Tete de la Course Cycling) 0:07:47
24Anna Dorovskikh (Amy D Foundation) 0:08:10
25Emily Cameron (Team United HealthCare / The 70)
26Moriah Wilson (Huck Racing) 0:08:31
27Monica Lloyd (Unattached) 0:08:55
28Allison Halpin (PDX TI p/b Elevator Coffee) 0:09:00
29Emily Werner (Amy D Foundation) 0:09:02
30Leslie Ethridge (ORNOT x Santa Cruz) 0:09:13
31Maddy Ward (SDBC Powered by Spinergy p/b UC) 0:09:27
32Ellen Campbell (Fort Lewis College)
33Jennifer Malik (Red Kite Fund pb BikeFettish) 0:10:09
@1LapAnne Usher (Fast Fun Nice p/b Wattie Ink)
@1LapRachel Rubino (Philly Bike Expo)
@1LapRachel Geiter (Walla Walla Roastery p/b Jakroo)
@1LapMegan Farrell (Huck Racing)
@1LapErin Feldhausen (Trek Cyclocross Collective)
@1LapTaylor Kuyk-white (RSCX - House Ind - DWR - HM)
@1LapRhys May (Rhys May Jewelry)
@1LapElizabeth Sheldon (CXHAIRS DEVO : TREK BIKES)
@1LapDanielle Larson (Cyclocross2theMax)
@1LapAlexandra Burton (Point S Auto p/b Nokian Tyres)
@1LapLaura Jeddeloh (Keller Rohrback)
@2LapPhilicia Marion (CarpeDiem Racing)
@2LapHeidi Wood (HiFi Sound Cycling Components)
@2LapCourtney Tanner (The Pony Shop p/b KPMG)
@2LapGrace Anne Ingham (Girls Racing in the South GRIT)
@3LapAnna Megale (Trek Cyclocross Collective)
DNSEllen Noble (Trek Factory Racing CX)

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Kirsten Frattini
Women's Editor

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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