Posted by Editoress on 12/10/07
Verge Series Finale - NBX Grand Prix December 9th, Warwick RI USA
Report courtesy Steve Frothingham
The final event of the 2007 Verge New England Championship Cyclo-cross Series featured another nail-biter finish in the men's elite race and the return to form of 'cross legend Lyne Bessette.
The final race also crowned series winners in nine categories, including dominant -- and promising -- performances in the Under-19 juniors and Under-23 seniors.
In the Men's Elite, Jeremy Powers (Cyclocrossworld.com) got the holeshot and quickly opened a 12-second lead on Todd Wells (GT), who pleased the crowd by hopping the barriers near the course's central carousel building. Series leader Jesse Anthony (Jamis) and Tim Johnson (Cannondale-Leer-Cyclocrossworld.com) were close behind.
After two laps, Wells bridged to Powers and the two traded attacks until Wells crashed and bent his derailleur on the last lap. Powers decided not to attack Wells until he went into the pit to take another bike, then he punched it to take about a five-second gap that Wells quickly closed.
From there, it looked to be a repeat of Saturday's race, when Wells came around Anthony to nip him at the line. But this time, Wells attacked Powers about a kilometer from the finish and Powers had to close a small gap on the final straight to win by a hand's width.
"He got a little gap, maybe two bike lengths, coming into the last straight," Powers said. "Maybe it was a little too much, but Todd hit a root kind of cock-eyed and then he went wide so I was able to close maybe one bike length and then I was just able to catch him at the end."
In the Women's Elite races, Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) returned to the series after missing the last two events due to illness and travel. She wasted no time producing the kind of performance that has helped her win the four previous series events she started.
"I had a good start, I felt snappy on the start," Bessette said at the finish. "I went through the course gradually and after the middle I opened more gas and I felt good; I tried to really push the speed in the corners."
Behind her, in a breakthrough performance, Amy Wallace (Richard Sachs-RGM Watches) also got a snappy start and separated herself from the chasers. Wallace kept within 15 seconds of Bessette for about two laps, and held a steady pace to the end to turn in her best series finish to date.
"Today I was feeling good when I got up. I told my teammates, 'I can win today.' Then I saw Lyne was here and I said, " ' I can definitely get second,'" she said with a smile. "The mental attitude helps so much."
Rebecca Wellons (Ridley), who came into Sunday's race in the series lead, and had to finish no worse than second behind Bessette to hold the lead. Unfortunately for Wellons, she got a poor start and finished sixth.
"I gave it everything my body had," said Wellons.
Verge NECCS Series Results:
Elite Men: Wins at the Gloucester and Northampton races highlighted Anthony's series victory in his first year as an Elite. For Chris Jones (NERAC), the series was an accelerated class in cyclocross. In his first full season as a crosser, Jones won at Farmington, Conn., and finished the series in second. Cross legend Mark McCormack, who has won the series seven times, was on the podium again in his first season as a part-time racer.
Elite Women: Bessette dominated the series even while skipping two events. However, the story of the series was often the race for second. Wellons, Milkowski and Wallace all climbed onto the second spot on the podium this year, and all three are optimistic about taking the next step up in years to come. In the end Wellons' consistency - she was second five times - overcame Milkowski's two victories to fill out the series podium.
U23: Jamey Driscoll (Fiordi-Frutta) was unbeaten in the U23 category, but impressed more observers with his performance relative to the elite men. He finished seventh in the elite series and was fifth in the final event. Behind him, the race for second came down to the wire, with Jerome Townsend (Ridley) holding off a surging Nicholas Keough (Jittery Joes-Sonic)
Junior U19/U15: Luke Keough (C.L.Noonan-Coast to Coast) - the reigning cyclocross national champion - and Gavin Mannion (Hot Tubes) - the reigning criterium national champion - battled all season in the U19 Junior category. While Mannion won the final event, Keough won the series, and both go into the national championships in Kansas City next weekend with high hopes for a second stars and stripes jersey. In the U15/Cub Juniors category Tommy Goguen (Minuteman Road Club) and Curtis White (CRBC) represented the future of American cyclocross with their first and second place finishes ahead of some encouragingly large fields.
Masters 35+, 45+ and 55+: Jonny Bold (Corner Cycles), Kevin Hines (Bike Link), and Edwards Hamel (Joe's Garage) won their respective series categories, with Hines finishing second in the 35+ and winning the 45+, a result that was also encouraging for riders of a certain age.
Mens 2/3: in the renamed Killer B's category, the fans are often as fun to watch as the racers. The loudest crowds always turn out for this workingman's race, and this year John Peterson (Bike Barn Racing) dominated with four wins, but the guys behind him often seemed to be having just as much fun.
Elite men 1 Jeremy Powers (cyclocrossworld.com) 57:16 2 Todd Wells (Team GT) at s.t. 3 Tim Johnson (Cannondale/Leer/Cyclocross World.Com) 1:33 4 Jesse Anthony (Jamis) 1:47 5 Jamey Driscoll (Fiordifrutta)* 2:31 6 Christopher Jones (Nerac Pro Cycling) 2:44 7 Mark McCormick (Team Clif Bar) 3:37 8 Adam Myerson (Nerac Pro Cycling) 9 Justin Spinelli (Rgm Watches/Richard Sachs) 10 Osmond Bakker (Stevens Cross) all s.t. 11 Alec Donahue (Joe's Garage) 3:42 12 Derrick St John (The Cyclery) 3:45 13 Nicholas Keough (Jittery Joes/Sonic)* 4:12 14 Daniel Neyens (Hagens Bergman) 4:37 15 Troy Wells (Team Clif Bar Cyclocross) 4:42 16 Daniel Coady (welovebicycles.com) 4:53 17 Jerome Townsend (Ridley)* 5:57 18 Amos Brumble (Ccb) 6:08 19 Kevin Wolfson (Dartmouth Cycling)* 6:19 20 Toby Marzot (Fiordifrutta)* 6:48 21 Peter Rubijono (Cambridge Bike/Igleheart Frames) 6:53 22 John Burns (Bikeman.com) s.t. 23 Adam Sullivan (Nbx/Narragansett Cyclocross Team) 7:04 24 Alex Whitmore (Cambridge Bicycle/Igleheart Frames) 7:19 25 Dan Langlois (Circle A Cycles/The Hub) 7:44 At one lap 26 Dylan O'sullivan (Housatonic Wheel Club)* 27 Tom Gosselin (Fast/If Powered By Lionette's) 28 Rickey Visinski (Spiuk/First Endurance/Crank Bros) 29 Morgan Macleod (Mechanical Services/Cyclemania)* 30 Michael Norton (Verge Sport/Test Pilot) * Under 23 Elite women 1 Lynne Bessette (cyclocrossworld.com) 41:07 2 Amy Wallace (RGM Watches/Richard Sachs) at 1:03 3 Maureen Bruno Roy (Independent Fabrication) 1:45 4 Anna Milkowski (Velo Bella-Kona) 2:03 5 Natasha Elliott (Stevens Cross) 2:06 6 Rebecca Wellons (Ridley Factory Team) 2:13 7 Erica Yozell Miller (Fort Factory Team) 3:08 8 Pauline Frascone (Independent Fabrication/Kempner) 3:19 9 Marci Titus Hall (Desalvo Custom Cycles) 10 Stephanie White (UNH) both s.t. 11 Cris Rothfuss (NEBC/Cycle Loft/Devonshire Dental) 3:28 12 Perri Mertens (Cambridge Bicycle/Igleheart Frames) 3:35 13 Sara Cushman (Gear Works/Spin Arts) 3:41 14 Karen Potter (Zanconato/Mtb-Mind.Com) 3:51 15 Melanie Swartz (Velo Bella - Kona) 4:07 16 Linnea Koons (FTS) 4:10 17 Alie Kenzer (RGM Watches - Richard Sachs) 4:19 18 Erin Duggan (Ridley Factory Team) 4:49 19 Brenda Bahnson (Independent Fabrication) 5:38 20 Susan MacLean (Gear Works/Spin Arts Cycling Team) 6:21 21 Joanie Caron (Louis Garneau-Sonic) 6:47 22 Hannah Kirshner (Circle A Cylocross/The Hub) 8:50 23 Laura Jensen (Benidorm/Eastern Bloc Cycling Club) 8:54 at one lap 24 Kelly Kavanagh (Mikes Bike Shop) Men 2/3 1 Ryan Rumsey (Bikeman.Com) 47:20 2 Brendan Cornett (Cyclemania) at 0:13 3 Jonathan Awerbuch (Dartmouth College) 0:23 4 John Peterson (Bike Barn) 0:29 5 Jeremy Dunn (Cambridge Bicycle/Igleheart Frames) 0:40 16 Shawn Marshall (Ottawa Bicycle Club) 1:49 18 David Dermont (True North Cycles) 2:05 35 Mark Pagell (Cyclocrossontario.Com) 5:05 41 Rod Olliver (Cyclocrossontario.Com) 5:46 48 Darko Antic (Cyclocrossontario.com) 10:00 U19 Junior Men 1 Gavin Mannion (Hot Tubes Junior Development Team) 37:40 2 Luke Keough (Clnoonan/Coast To Coast/Kam) at s.t. 3 Jesse Keough (Clnoonan/Coast To Coast/Kam) 3:48 4 Ryan Packard (Quadcycles) 4:16 5 Karl Hoppner (Ride With Rendall) 5:04 Women 3/4 1 Rebecca Blatt (Team Kenda Tire) 36:20 2 Christina Tamilio (Minuteman Road Club/Landry's Bicycles) 0:25 3 Allison Snooks (Landrys Bicycles) 0:32 4 Briana Illingworth (Midweek Cycling Club) s.t. 5 Elizabeth White (NEBC/Cycle Loft/Devonshire Dental) 1:08 Masters 35+ 1 Mark McCormick (Team Clif Bar) 37:51 2 Jonny Bold (Corner Cycle) at 0:10 3 Michael Yozell (Fort Factory Cyclocross Team) 0:15 4 Kevin Hines (Corner Cycle)* s.t. 5 Greg Ferguson (Fort Factory Team) 0:48 14 Pascal Bussieres (Louis Garneau Custom Team) 1:23 18 Steve Proulx (Stevens Cross) 2:11 *+45
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