British cyclocross champion Helen Wyman (Kona) and USA cyclocross champion Jeremy Powers (Rapha-Focus) continued their winning ways at day one of the Gran Prix of Gloucester today. Both are on a roll, Wyman has won all but one of the UCI races she started this season, making it six wins out of seven races, and she crashed out of the race she didn’t win. Powers has claimed all three of the all important C1 races this season so far.
The first day of the Gran Prix of Gloucester in Gloucester, MA brought top-tier racers from all over the world, lured by today’s UCI Category 1 race on the opening day of the Shimano New England Professional Cyclocross Series. World-class competitors are drawn to New England for the Holy Week of Cyclocross, featuring two of North America’s best races, both including UCI Category 1 races: the Gran Prix of Gloucester and the Providence Cyclocross Festival, only about 70 miles and one week apart.
After a day of rain, racers faced the course’s trademark off-camber hillside spirals, but with the added challenge of slick mud and deep ruts formed by the wheels of racers in the sold-out races earlier in the day. A long, steep run-up from the beach to the top level of the course sent the riders into thick, tire-gripping mud and challenging turns best suited to the technically proficient racers.
See more photos in the gallery.
The women’s race got underway under cloudy skies along the ocean’s edge as Wyman, on a stateside winning streak, lined up front and center, with fellow British racer Gabby Day (Rapha-Focus) right alongside her. Wyman came around Meredith Miller (CalGiant/Specialized) who took the holeshot and was off and opened a gap early on, with Day, hometown sweetheart Crystal Anthony (Cyclocrossworld.com), and Andrea Smith (LadiesFirst) working together to chase Wyman down.
Wyman’s gap was strong, however, and she maintained a solid lead until Day launched a flaming attack mid-race. Miller and Anthony, meanwhile, broke away from the field in a race for the final podium spot. Day’s amazing move got her within sight of Wyman, but was not enough to take the win away, and Miller eventually dropped her hammer on Anthony, a newcomer to the front of the Elite race, and took the third podium spot. This surely won’t be the last we hear from Anthony, however, who appears to be only improving this season.
Next up, the Elite men took to the start grid and launched their first race of the Shimano New England Professional Cyclocross Series. The fight at the front of the race pitted the giants of North American cyclocross, including two New Englanders, Tim Johnson (Cannondale/cyclocrossworld.com) and Powers along with Oregonian Ryan Trebon (Cannondale/cyclocrossworld.com) against top European talent, including Frenchman Nicolas Bazin (AUBER 93), British National Cyclocross Champion Ian Field (Hargroves), and Belgian Ben Berden (Raleigh/Clement).
Although Powers started the race a ways back due to a missed pedal at the start, he eventually worked his way up to make a group of six leaders. It was apparent that crowd favorite Johnson was on top of his form and wanted the win as he led the group around the off-cambers and over the barriers. With the help of teammate Trebon and Powers, Johnson broke from the Europeans, creating a gap that would endure for the remainder of the race. Trebon first moved into the lead, and Powers followed, gapping Johnson. Berden looked strong, threatening to edge his way up to challenge Johnson for the last podium spot, but Johnson’s excellent form and smooth riding held Berden off. Powers rode away from Trebon to win it, with Johnson not far behind for third.
Racing continues on Sunday, with a C2 race using a variation of the classic Gloucester course.
GP Gloucester Elite Women Top 10 (Complete results at crossresults.com)
1. Helen Wyman, Kona Factory Racing
2. Gabriella Day, Rapha-Focus
3. Meredith Miller, Cal Giant/Specialized
4. Crystal Anthony, Cyclocrossworld.com
5. Mary Mcconneloug, Team KENDA-Seven-NoTubes
6. Julie Krasniak, Rapha-Focus
7. Andrea Smith, LadiesFirst Racing
8. Kaitlin Antonneau, Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com
9. Elle Anderson, LadiesFirst Racing
10. Arley Kemmerer, C3-Athletes Serving Athletes
GP Gloucester Elite Men Top 10
1. Jeremy Powers, Rapha-Focus
2. Ryan Trebon, Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com
3. Tim Johnson, Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com
4. Ben Berden, Raleigh/Clement
5. Ian Field, Hargroves Cycles – Specialized
6. Jamey Driscoll, Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com
7. Zach McDonald, Rapha-Focus
8. Nicolas Bazin, Team AUBER 93
9. Brian Matter, Gear Grinder/Clif Bar
10. Jesse Anthony, Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies