The second day of racing at Green Mountain Cyclocross Weekend got underway under beautiful skies set against the mountains of Vermont at the Catamount Outdoor Family Center. Today marked the second day of UCI cyclocross racing in New England, as well as the second day of the Verge New England Cyclocross Series, the premier amateur race series in the US.
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Helen Wyman (Kona Factory Racing) took charge of the Elite women’s race, leading the field before the first half lap was done as Maghalie Rochette (Cyclocrossworld.com) settled into second spot. The race for the third podium spot cranked up, led by Crystal Anthony (Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies), Natasha Elliott (Rare Vos Racing), Cassandra Maximenko (Rare Vos Racing) and Mo Bruno Roy (Bob’s Red Mill p/b Seven Cycles). Meanwhile, a second chase formed on their heels, with accomplished racer Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) leading teammate Emma White in her second UCI race ever. White has only just graduated from junior racing into the Elites, but spent a year racing in the category 3 men’s race. Anthony attacked, pressuring the group to a pace that only Bruno Roy could match, as Bessette worked her way up lap by lap to challenge the third and fourth place racers. Anthony kept her cool, racing clean and fast to maintain her position on the podium. Bessette bested Bruno Roy for fourth, with the end result of Wyman taking a decisive second win, Rochette with an equally decisive second, Anthony third, Bessette fourth, and Bruno Roy for fifth.
“I love the six weeks I spend racing here. It’s brilliant to be here!” gushed Wyman, who plans to race many of the storied New England cyclocross races before returning to Europe: the Midnight Ride of Cyclocross, the Gran Prix of Gloucester and the Providence Cyclocross Festival.
No rest today in the Elite men’s race, where repeated attacks lit up the front of the field like a fireworks display. The group that emerged at the front was Justin Lindine (Redline/NBX), Tim Johnson (Cannondale/CyclocrossWorld/Pony Shop), Stephen Hyde (JAM Fund/NCC/Vittoria), Raphael Gagné (Rocky Mountain Factory), Lukas Winterberg (Mueller Landscape/BH Bikes), Curtis White (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com), and Luke Keough (Keough Cyclocross). Lindine went on the offensive, and then Johnson took his turn, followed by Gagne, and only the strongest could hang on. A group of four settled in: Hyde, Johnson, Lindine, and Gagne. After a crash early in the race, Todd Wells (Specialized Racing) was forced to work hard to chase down the front of the race, making his way up lap by lap; however, he never quite made contact with the race leaders, who stayed together until the final half lap. Gagne led Johnson through the final turn, maintaining his lead for his first win in a UCI cyclocross race. Johnson came across second, with Hyde claiming the third podium spot. Next up were Lindine, and Luke Keough overtaking Wells in a sprint finish for fifth.
“It’s awesome racing with Wells, a hero of mine, and Tim Johnson. I’m looking forward to the rest of the year,” said newcomer Stephen Hyde of his second UCI podium of the season, which are also his only career UCI podiums.
In the standings for the Verge New England Cyclocross Series, Melissa Seib (Bikeman.com) takes the jersey from Erin Faccone (GPM Sport) in the women’s 3/4 competition, and the Catergory 3 men’s leader is Lee Wassillie. In the 3/4 Masters women’s field, Mellissa Houde (Sportif Bromont) wears the jersey. For the Junior 10-14 division, the boys’ leader is Sam Noel (1K2GO/Onion River Sports) and the girls’ leader is Gabrielle Czerula (ENGVT). In the Masters men’s categories, the 35+ jersey winner so far is Todd Bowden (Expowheelmen), 45+ is Roger Asphlom (Finkraft Cycling Team), and 55+ is Al Blanchard (Blue Ribbon Restaurants). The next series race will be the Gran Prix of Gloucester, where the battle continues!
Complete results at crossresults.com