Maghalie Rochette goes back-to-back at GO Cross with C2 women's win

Maghalie Rochette wins both days of GO Cross 2023
Maghalie Rochette wins both days of GO Cross 2023 (Image credit: Bruce Buckley / USCX)

Maghalie Rochette (Canyon Collective) returned to the podium on Sunday with a solo victory at the C2 elite women’s race at Virginia’s Blue Ridge GO Cross. In a replication of Saturday’s podium, Caroline Mani (Groove Off Road Racing) finished second, 1:53 back, and Raylyn Nuss (Steve Tilford Foundation Racing) took third, 2:19 off the winning pace.

Rain made the track at Fallon Park slippery on Sunday for C2 races, with the same features and a course run in reverse.

Rochette opened a 22-second gap on Saturday’s main adversaries after the first of six laps. Nuss held second place to herself after the second pass on the rolling 2.9km course in Roanoke, Virginia, buth would be passed by Mani on the next circuit. 

Mani looked over her shoulder on a long straightaways at the mid-point of the race but there was no sight of Nuss as she trailed by 10 seconds. Meanwhile, Sidney McGill (Cervelo/Orange Living) began to claw her way back in the chase of a podium spot.

Rochette remained consistent through the race and the Canadian scored her 31st career victory.

“I really loved it! Definitely more slippery. Way more slippery at the beginning and then I would say the last two laps were a lot more tacky. It was definitely cyclocross,” Rochette said about the wet course conditions. “The first time of the season, I was able  to shake out the skills and get comfortable on the bike. But also a different course. The flow was a lot faster, generally. I really liked it. And it was so fun that the courses were so different from day one to day two. So a fun ‘cross weekend.”

Mani, the two-time USCX women’s champion, said she was getting used to new equipment at the race while trailing the early laps in third place, and found a smooth tempo by the second half of the race to ride ahead of Nuss. She likes the Virginia course, having raced there 10 times and never finishing off the podium.

“Maggie is amazing and she is strong. She handled her bike way better than I did today. It took me a little bit of time to figure it out. I’m super grateful we had mud today so I can practice a little more cyclocross skills,” Mani told viewers on the GCN+ interview after the finish.

GO Cross was the opening round of the eight-race US Cyclocross Series (USCX), with pairings of C1 and C2 races at four different venues on the east coast. The next stop is Rochester Cyclocross in New York on September 23-24. Elite fields will split the purse equally, $7,500 for both women and men, once the final races are completed in Falmouth on October 29.

“My plan was to improve from race to race. I’m keeping the same mindset through Rochester just see how I can improve. We might have different players, so that will change the dynamic, but same mindset for me. This gives me confidence.”


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Jackie Tyson
North American Production editor

Jackie has been involved in professional sports for more than 30 years in news reporting, sports marketing and public relations. She founded Peloton Sports in 1998, a sports marketing and public relations agency, which managed projects for Tour de Georgia, Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah and USA Cycling. She also founded Bike Alpharetta Inc, a Georgia non-profit to promote safe cycling. She is proud to have worked in professional baseball for six years - from selling advertising to pulling the tarp for several minor league teams. She has climbed l'Alpe d'Huez three times (not fast). Her favorite road and gravel rides are around horse farms in north Georgia (USA) and around lavender fields in Provence (France), and some mtb rides in Park City, Utah (USA).

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