Laura Van Gilder (C3/Athletes Serving Athletes) and Justin Lindine (bikereg.com/Joe’s Garage/Scott) powered their way to wins at Nor’easter ‘Cross presented by Smartwool and Cycle-Smart on Saturday. This first-year UCI race at Loon Mountain in Lincoln, New Hampshire took full advantage of the terrain by mixing two challenging climbs, several off-camber descents, two run-ups and two long paved straightaways linking the sides of the course. The unique course wrapped around and through the Nor’easter Festival powered by EMS, going in front of the main concert stage and around the rock climbing competition. For the race organizers, this was an opportunity to show a largely unfamiliar audience what cyclocross is all about.
The Elite Women toed the start line with the return of Van Gilder, hoping to continue her great start to the season, a trio of Ladies First racers, this weekend including Crystal Anthony, Ann D’ambruoso and Christina Tamilio as well as New England cyclocross staple Rebecca Wellons (Pedro’s), former New Zealand national champion Linnea Koons (Embrocation Cycling Journal) and Rebecca Blatt (Silver Bull/Central Wheel).
“I knew I wanted to be on the front,” commented Van Gilder following the race, “I needed to be able to ride my own lines. These women in New England are just getting stronger and stronger.”
With this in mind, Van Gilder took the lead from the gun, leading D’ambruoso and Anthony through the first lap. Always taking advantage of the power sections, Van Gilder was able to create space behind her and was able to cruise in to victory. As was the case for many racers this weekend, the high-profile regional races last weekend combined with travel to and from Cross Vegas, left a lot of question marks in Van Gilder’s mind, but once she was on course, the questions disappeared. The Ladies First upstart, Anthony, continued her team’s podium streak by pulling in second behind Van Gilder. Not to be outdone, once again, D’ambruoso finished third, further proving that the Ladies First Racing team is not to be underestimated. Blatt outdid Tamilio on the line, taking a very solid fourth place in a strong field.
Justin Lindine took control of the Elite Men’s race early on. “My teammate, Jerome (Townsend) took the hole shot and pinned himself pretty hard, so I sat in for a few minutes early before attacking,” said Lindine.
As Townsend began to fade, Lindine was able to bridge up and catapult off of Townsend’s strong start to give him a chance at victory. While Lindine was pushing off the front, the battle for the remainder of the podium was pitched between Dylan McNicholas (Pedro’s) and the recently un-retired Phil Wong (Seaside Cycle/Antero Resources). The two were taking hard pulls and closing the gap to Lindine for several laps before McNicholas picked up a safety pin with his tubular and was forced to ride a flat tire for almost a full lap to the pit.
With McNicholas gone, Wong’s chances of catching Lindine became slim and he was able to race defensively for second. Behind him, McNicholas was doing all he could to regain second position but never got closer than thirty seconds. Behind him, Adam Myerson (Cycle-Smart) and Justin Spinelli (Richard Sachs/RGM/Radix) did their best bring back McNicholas, but the Pedro’s rider was fueled by anger and held on for the best UCI result of his career. Myerson was able to pull away from Spinelli on the longer of the two climbs on the course and held the chase off for fourth with Spinelli fifth. Sixth position went to Manny Goguen (bikereg.com/Joe’s Garage/Scott) who, coming from an early mechanical, had the race of his life, picking up valuable UCI points.
Top 10 Elite Women (Complete Results)
1. Laura Van gilder (C3-Athletes Serving Athletes )
2. Crystal Anthony (LadiesFirst Racing )
3. Ann D’ambruoso (LadiesFirst Racing )
4. Rebecca Blatt (silver bull/central wheel )
5. Christina Tamilio (LadiesFirst Racing )
6. Linnea Koons (Embrocation Cycling Journal )
7. Frances Morrison (Wheelhouse / NCC )
8. Rebecca Wellons (Pedro’s )
9. Elle Anderson (Strava.com )
10. Lenore Pipes (The Wistar Institute )
Top 10 Elite Men (Complete Results)
1. Justin Lindine (BikeReg.com / Joe’s Garage / Scott )
2. Philip Wong (Seaside Cycle – Antero Resources )
3. Dylan Mcnicholas (PEDROS )
4. Adam Myerson (Cycle-Smart )
5. Justin Spinelli (RICHARD SACHS – RGM WATCHES – RADIX )
6. Manny Goguen (BikeReg.com / Joe’s Garage / Scott )
7. Nicholas Keough (Champion Systems p/b Keough Cyclocr )
8. Jeremy Durrin (Wheelhouse / NCC )
9. Brian Wilichoski (CYCLOCROSSWORLD.COM )
10. David Wilcox (Pedro’s Grassroots Cycling Club )