Three more days of racing were held at the 2009 USA Cycling Elite Track National Championships at the Home Depot Center velodrome with the finale on Sunday. Let’s recap – and check out the photos over at OTBPhoto
On Friday both Taylor Phinney (Trek-Livestrong) and Sarah Hammer (American Track Foundation) caught their opponents in their respective men’s and women’s individual pursuit final to add to their collection of national titles. Cristin Walker (Momentum Coaching) also grabbed her second Stars-and-Stripes of the competition in the women’s Kierin and Olympian Adam Duvendeck (Momentum Coaching) won his first elite sprint national title.
Phinney clocked a time of 4 minutes, 30.855 seconds in the qualifying round of the 4,000-meter individual pursuit before catching Roman Kilun (OUCH p/b Maxxis) in the gold medal final to win his third consecutive elite title in that event.
“This event is so tough,” explained Phinney. “It’s a rewarding event, but you really have to work at it. It’s exciting to see so many young guys like Julian doing well.”
Daniel Harm (Broadmark Capital City) took third ahead of last year’s bronze medalist Julian Kyer (Trek-Livestrong) in the bronze medal face-off.
In the women’s 3,000-meter individual pursuit, former world champion Hammer took her ninth national title catching training partner Dotsie Bausch (ATF-Empower Coaching) after the same number of laps as Phinney caught his competitor, seven and a half. Also going head-to-head with Bausch in the qualifier, Hammer posted a Home Depot Center Velodrome record with a time of 3:31.831 with her second lap time even faster than Phinney’s.
In the race for the bronze medal, Heather Jackson defeated 2008 pursuit national champion Kimberly Geist (Team Alliance Environmental).
Five hundred meter time trial champion Walker took her second title of these national championships winning the women’s Keirin in a photo finish over Feiss. The pair met in a packed final that included former collegiate national champion Anna Lang (B&L Bike & Sport) and 2008 national champion and 2009 omnium winner Cari Higgins (ProMan Hit Squad).
In the match sprint final, a duo of Olympians, Duvendeck and Giddeon Massie (Bike Religion), split a pair of rides before Duvendeck was awarded the national title on a relegation in the third ride. Duvendeck recovered from the crash to collect his first elite national title in the sprint. Daniel Walker (Momentum Coaching) took two out of three from Kevin Mansker to win the bronze medal as well as the U23 national title.
“You never want to win like that,” stated Duvendeck. “I really felt good going into that round. It was a good hole and it just got closed up on me. I feel pretty confident about the racing today. This is some of the best competition we’ve had in years with several guys posting sub-11 second times in the 200. It really bodes well for the future of American track cycling.”
On Saturday, Massie, Phinney and Hammer each earned their third national titles of the week while Walker collected her second Stars-and-Stripes on the event. Massie sprinted to the win in the men’s Keirin while Phinney won a tie breaker in the points race. World champion Hammer showed her continued strength, winning the points race while Walker added a sprint title to Thursday’s 500-meter time trial gold.
In the men’s 30-kilometer points race, Phinney and Mike Creed (Team Type I) both completed the race with 53 points after lapping the field twice. Phinney however finished second in the final sprint to Creed’s third, therefore Phinney was awarded his third Stars-and-Stripes of the week. In the action-packed race, omnium winner Cody O’Reilly (BISSELL) grabbed third, one lap down on the leaders with 40 points, while Danny Heeley (South Bay Wheelmen) and Jackie Simes (Mt Khakis) rounded out the top five. Phinney also earned the U23 national title with O’Reilly and Simes second and third in that category.
“I haven’t ridden on the track in two years so I wasn’t expecting a ton,” explained Creed. “I knew it was tight going into the final sprint and it was disappointing to get so close.”
Hammer once again displayed her dominance winning the women’s points race two laps up on the field with 57 points. Theresa Cliff-Ryan (Verducci Breakaway) and Shelley Olds (ProMan Hit Squad), who finished one lap up, earned 35 and 31 points respectively to win silver and bronze. Catherine Fiedler-Cook (Tommasini) earned the U23 national title with her fourth-place-overall result.
In the men’s Keirin, Massie held off a fierce challenge by 20-year-old David Espinoza (Bike America) and Steven Beardsley (Gentle Lovers) to win the gold. 2008 Keirin national and Pan Am champion Jimmy Watkins and Friday’s sprint champion Duvendeck were absent from the event; Watkins contesting and winning a large South American track race and Duvendeck due to injury.
For Massie, it was the third national title of the week as he took the Stars-and-Stripes in both the 250-meter time trial and the kilometer time trial. The 2004 and 2008 Olympian also earned the silver in last night’s sprint. After finishing second in the 250-meter time trial and third in the kilo, Espinoza once again just missed the title.
“It was a good week,” said Massie. “I was feeling good all week and racing every day. I plan on taking this form and contesting as many international races as I can. That’s what I need, what we need, to take it to that next level.”
The women’s match sprint took center stage on Saturday as the top two qualifiers, Walker and Higgins went head-to-head in the match sprint final. Walker, on monstrous form, took two straight catching the reigning champ at the line each time to earn her second national title of the week.
Third and fourth-place qualifiers Feiss and Jen Featheringhill (Bike Central) swapped places in the bronze medal ride with Feiss taking two-in-a-row to earn third place.
The Championships concluded on Sunday with national titles in the men’s and women’s team sprint and the men’s Madison being awarded. Nearly two dozen women also contested the inaugural women’s Madison, an exhibition event for 2009.
In the men’s Madison, O’Reilly and Iggy Silva (Iggy Racing) lapped the field inside the final few laps to beat Black Dog’s Ryan Luttrell and Ryan Sagba, 8-4. The pairing of Shane Kline (Kelly Benefit Strategies) and Bobby Lea (OUCH p/b Maxxis) scored 25 points, but finished a lap down to place third. For O’Reilly the race wrapped up a successful week after winning the omnium and placing third in the points race, and for Silva the Stars-and Stripes marked his first as an elite.
“I went over to Hasselt last February with USA Cycling’s development program and did some Madison racing,” explained the 19-year-old Silva. “The competition over there is a lot better, so it really prepared me for this race. Julian (Kyer), Cody and myself are headed back over in a few weeks as well. Madison racing has a lot going on and is very exciting so it’s one of my favorite events on either the road or the track.”
In the team sprint events, the Landrover squad of Lanell Rockmore (Team Alliance), Dean Tracy (Land Rover-Orbea) and Kevin Mansker rode to a national title in the men’s contest while the ProMan squad of Higgins and Lang won the women’s event.
Rockmore, Dean and Mansker clocked a winning time of 48.023 seconds to beat the Momentum trio of Kelyn Akuna (Veritas Cycling Team), Beardsley and D Walker, who clocked a time of 48.497 seconds, by a narrow margin of less than half a second.
In the head-to-head bronze medal match, the Affinity Cycling team of Andrew LaCorte (Affinity Cycles), Dan Sullivan (Team Metra-Wendy’s) and Espinoza turned in a 48.627 to place third over LTO Velo’s Peter Billington, Sam Milroy and Giovanni Rey whose 48.801 left them in fourth place overall of the 12 teams who took the start.
For the women, Higgins and Lang beat Featheringhill and sprint champion Walker in the gold medal final with a winning time of 37 seconds flat. For Higgins it was her third straight team sprint title.
“The team sprint is always on the last day and we’re all really tired, so it’s kind of like icing on the cake,” explained Higgins. “Today we’re all so excited about being able to participate in the first-ever domestic women’s Madison. The Madison is becoming an international event so it’s great that the U.S. is keeping pace. We even have a field of 10 teams which is great for the first time.”
In the bronze-medal match of the women’s team sprint, Home Depot’s Feiss and Cj Boyenger (Team Hammer Nutrition) clocked a 37.757 to edge Amelia Bjesse-Puffin (Brian’s House of Pain) and Andrea Fisk (Velo Bella) of the ATRH squad by a mere tenth of a second.
Despite being an exhibition-only event, the women’s Madison was undoubtedly the highlight of the final day of competition at the 2009 USA Cycling Elite Track National Championships. A total of 10 squads, including several powerhouse teams, lined up for the start of the first-ever event. It was the Vanderkitten team of Lang and Jennifer Reither (Vanderkitten) however that stole the show, sneaking around to lap the field and grab the win. The victory gave Lang her unofficial second title of the day.
The Vanderkitten pair scored 10 points to the ProMan squad of Christen King (ProMan) and Higgins’ 20, but the extra lap earned them the victory. Tomassini’s Catherine Fiedler-Cook and Cassandra Hollman also earned 10 sprint points to finish third.
In summary, the new champs are:
- Men International Omnium: Cody O’Reilly (BISSELL)
- Men 250M Standing Start: Giddeon Massie (Bike Religion)
- Men Team Pursuit: Julian Kyer, Ian Moir, Taylor Phinney and Justin Williams (Trek Livestrong)
- Men Scratch Race: Bobby Lea (OUCH p/b Maxxis)
- Men 1K: Giddeon Massie (Bike Religion)
- Men Sprint: Adam Duvendeck (Felt Factory Team)
- Men Pursuit: Taylor Phinney (Trek Livestrong)
- Men 200m TT: Adam Duvendeck (Felt Factory Team)
- Men Points Race: Taylor Phinney (Trek Livestrong)
- Men Keirin: Giddeon Massie (Bike Religion)
- Men Team Sprint: Lanell Rockmore, Dean Tracy, Kevin Masker (Land Rover-ORBEA)
- Men Madison: Cody O’Reilly (BISSELL) and Iggy Silva
- Women International Omniun: Cari Higgins (ProMan)
- Women Team Pursuit: Dotsie Bausch, Kimberly Geist and Sarah Hammer (Empower Coaching)
- Women Scratch Race: Shelley Olds (ProMan)
- Women 500m: Cristin Walker (Momentum Coaching)
- Women Pursuit: Sarah Hammer (American Track)
- Women Keirin: Cristin Walker (Momentum Coaching)
- Women Sprint: Cristin Walker (Momentum Coaching)
- Women Points Race: Sarah Hammer (American Track)
- Women 200m TT: Cristin Walker (Momentum Coaching)
- Women Team Sprint: Cari Higgins (ProMan) and Anna Lang
- Women Madison: Anna Lang and Jennifer Reither (Vanderkitten)
Full results here
Report from usacycling.org