Reigning and seven-times US National Cross Champion Katie Compton (Rabobank Giant) did it again at the Colorado Cross Classic, another solo win for the champion in her hometown. Third after the holeshot, Compton took the over the front on the first lap, applied pressure and was able to solo away for the win.
French National Champion Caroline Mani was second and Georgia Gould (Luna), third.
After an early winter storm a few days ago in Boulder, the sun and wind had dried off most of the course, except for a few sloppy corners on the backside of the course by the Boulder Reservoir. But ruts were grooved in leading to many single tracks spot making it difficult to pass in some spots. Mani took another holeshot in a tight battle with Nicole Duke (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com) who slotted behind the French National Champion as they started the first lap. Compton was right behind followed by the rest of the field.
But it didn’t take long for Compton to come around and take over the pace making at the front. Behind her, lined up were Mani, Gould, Duke, Julie Krasniak (Rapha-Focus), Alice Pennington, Chloe Forsman (Race Club 11). Soon after Compton pulled away, growing the gap lap after lap to take another solo win.
At the start of the third lap, Compton had an unassailable gap, Mani and Gould were together. Duke a few seconds behind followed by Butler and Amanda Carey (Kenda) together. Then Mani put in an attack on a gravel straightaway that Gould could not match and continued on to take second solo.
Katie Compton (Rabobank Giant). “Caroline and Nicole got off fast, they always do so I just settled in behind them and I could see them kind of lose that initial acceleration so I took over, just keep the pressure on, keep on pushing. And then accelerate a couple of hard times through the mud and had a gap and kind of went from there.”
Above being off the front solo. “I got to work on the technical stuff and get into the turns fast, and today was a perfect day for that because it is muddy, it was tricky and some of the turns were tight, some were slow and I really wanted to push that. And it’s hard to hit the ruts at the right time if you slow down so I had to keep pushing and keep the same speed in the turns so I wouldn’t make mistakes and crash.”
About the course. “All the sand was pretty wet so it was actually pretty fast, it wasn’t difficult today. You just had to hit the ruts and if you were in the ruts it was pretty easy. Koksijde is a lot harder (smile) so I kept thinking that during the race, ‘I’m going to suffer a lot more in a couple of weeks, got to keep pushing’.”
Caroline Mani. “I did the start and I was like okay. I’m working for the holeshot, I was just awful at the World Cup, and this year I’m doing every weekend the holeshot so it’s pretty cool. The first lap I was in first position until we hit the bottom and she just accelerated, and I did a mistake but she was really fast so I wasn’t able to follow her. After Nicole and Georgia tried to catch me, I was with Georgia and I was like ‘no I don’t want to be with her’, to push hard. ”
About racing at altitude. “The first lap when she attacked I felt like I needed more air and I was sick last week, bronchitis, it really hurt, it was painful.”
Top 10 Results
1. Katherine Compton (Rabobank Giant) 42:04
2. Caroline Mani 43:15
3. Georgia Gould (Luna) 43:44
4. Nicole Duke (Cannondale p/b cyclocrossworld.com) 44:13
5. Susan Butler (River City Bicycles) 44:42
6. Amanda Carey (Kenda) 44:58
7. Kelsy Bingham 45:31
8. Heather Irmiger 45:42
9. Alison Powers (crosspropz) 45:44
10. Alice Pennington 45:58