The legend of Baystate Cyclocross graces Sterling, MA this weekend for Rounds 9 and 10 of the Verge New England Cyclocross Series. This classically brutal New England course, crafted by renowned course designer Tom Stevens, challenges racers with off-camber sections, punchy climbs, and twisting corners. Arriving to meet the challenge will be top-notch racers from around the country.
Fans will be treated to a very exciting Elite women’s race. Former New Englander and USA Cycling ProCX points leader Elle Anderson (Cal Giant/Specialized) hopes to repeat her win at the second day of Baystate last year. Last year’s winner of day one Crystal Anthony (Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) returns this week from a successful racing stint in Europe confident she can clinch the victory. Laura Van Gilder (Van Dessel p/b Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers) will do anything she can to control this weekend’s races in order to throw down her signature unstoppable sprint, although this race last year was where Arley Kemmerer (C3-Twenty20 Cycling) finally overtook Van Gilder in a sprint for second on day two. With a wish for rain, mud, and anything technical, New England’s favorite racer Mo Bruno Roy (Bob’s Red Mill p/b Seven Cycles) will take off like a shot and show the spectators a thing or two about bike handling skills.
“I’m excited to return to Baystate this year. I have always loved the course, and enjoy returning to my native New England for cross races,” says Anderson. “I look forward to battling for a repeat win with some of New England’s best competition!”
The Elite men’s race is certain to be just as action-packed. One to watch this weekend is Curtis White (Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com), who just aged into the Elite race this year but has already proven he can shine as bright as more seasoned world-class racers. Adam Myerson (Team SmartStop/Mountain Khakis), the director of the Verge New England Cyclocross Series and its 2010 Elite winner, looks to cement a solid placing with the speed and skill that come only from experience. Jeremy Durrin (Optum Pro Cycling p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies), who marked his first UCI victory at Baystate last year, and Anthony Clark (JAM Fund/NCC/Vittoria) both arrive at Baystate extremely motivated for a win after strong finishes at Supercross last weekend.
Competition heats up this weekend in the Verge New England Cyclocross Series, the premier amateur series in the US. Ryley Mosher (WheelWorks) and Daniel John Vaughn (Corning/No Tubes/Swan Cycles) retain 10-14 Juniors jerseys in the girls’ and boys’ divisions. Stephen Pierce (JAM Fund/NCC/Vittoria) appears unstoppable in the category 3 men’s division, while teammate Alec Donahue leads the 35+ men’s category with a good points margin. Ian Keough (Keough Cyclocross p/b Felt Bicycles) grabbed the lead in the 15-18 category; this weekend will show whether he can maintain. Melissa Seib (Bikeman) leads the amateur women’s field, while Alisa Allegrini (Nantucket Velo) holds a strong lead in the 35+ masters women’s field. 45+ leader Roger Aspholm (Finkraft Cycling Team) retains the series jersey, and 55+ leader Al Blanchard (Blue Ribbon Restaurants) keeps that jersey.
Next up in New England cyclocross, NBX Gran Prix of Cyclocross will be the setting for the fiery finale of both the Shimano New England Professional Cyclocross Series presented by Verge and the Verge New England Cyclocross Series. The true champions in all categories, amateur and Elite, will be decided at NBX on December 7 & 8.