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Vergegear.com Mid-Atlantic Cyclo-Cross Championship Series #9: Raccoon Township 'Cross - NE

Beaver County, Pennsylvania, November 22, 2003


Shogren and Itle score wins at Raccoon 'Cross

By Tammy Ebersole

The Vergegear.com Mid-Atlantic Cyclo-Cross Championship (MAC) Series invaded Raccoon Township Park in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania for Round 9 of the 2003 series.

Elite Men

The Elite Men's race started with the team of Fort/GPOA on the attack as teammates Gunnar Shogren, Greg (Fergie) Ferguson and Ryan Leech all made their presence felt at the front. A few laps into the race, a group containing Shogren, Ferguson and Joe Reynolds (Wissahickon) separated from the main field. Left behind was Leech. Shogren's group continued to push the pace and eventually, Ferguson dropped off. With Ferguson stuck between the Shogren/Reynolds duo and the group behind him, Leech saw his opportunity. Leech dug deep and managed to pull himself up to teammate Ferguson. Once Leech made contact, Fergie buried himself working to pull Leech up to Shogren.

Up front, Shogren continued to sit on Reynolds' wheel, biding his time, hoping Leech would make contact and throw the odds in Fort/GPOA's favor. With two to go, Leech jumped off Ferguson's wheel and charged across the remaining gap to join up with Shogren. Immediately after that, Fergie went down in a muddy technical section, recovered quickly but lost several spots. Leech was leading as the group of three got the bell and the odds were not looking good for Reynolds. Things got worse for Reynolds when he flatted halfway through the final lap. As Reynolds headed towards the pit, the Fort/GPOA duo took off towards the final section of the course.

Reynolds re-joined the race quickly but not before he lost a spot to Peter Morse (Mid-Week). As Shogren and Leech headed into the final muddy section, all eyes were trained towards the final set of barriers. Shogren came into sight first, having gapped his teammate through the deep muddy section. Shogren rolled across the line solo to take the win. Leech followed close behind for second. Morse held off Reynolds for third and Reynolds finished fourth, a disappointing finish for him after putting in such a strong ride all day. Kyle Wamsley (Fuji) rounded out the top five.

Elite Women

In the Elite Women's field, Amber Itle (Wissahickon) took the early lead and never relinquished it, leading wire to wire to take the win. Behind her the field strung out with Sami Fournier (Snow Valley) riding a inspired race to place second and Betsy Schauer (Fort/GPOA) put in a solid ride to finish third. For the first half of the race fourth place was held down by Tammy Ebersole (Evolution Racing) but she was eventually overhauled by Laura Hanlon (Fuji) who capitalized on a bobble by Ebersole. Hanlon was then chased down on the next lap by Julie Lewis, (Team Lake Effect) who had doggedly worked her way up through traffic after a less than perfect start. Lewis ended up finishing in fourth place. Hanlon held off a late charge by Lisa Most (Wissahickon) and Carolyn Haill (Mid Week) to take fifth.

Masters races

The Master's' 35+ race came down to a sprint finish between Rob Hacker (Lite Bites) and series leader, Eric Schlauch (Somerset Wheelmen). Hacker took the win, creating a tie for the overall Vergegear.com series lead. With only one race to go, the series champion will be determined by their finish order at next week's series finale. Other winners of the day include, Rudy Sroka (Team Lake Effect) in the Master's 45+ class, Syd Lea (Fuji) in the Junior's class, Eric Kriberney (Speed Goat) in Men's B, Krista Schultz (Tri Speed) in Women's B and Eddie Delgros (Unattached) in Men's C category.

Next week the action moves to New Castle, Delaware for the final race of the 2003 series. For race details or additional series details, please go to www.monkeyhillcs.com/mac/2003 For race registration, go to www.bikereg.com.


Elite Men
1 Gunnar Shogren (Fort/GPOA)
2 Ryan Leech (Fort/GPOA)
3 Peter Morse (Mid-Week)
4 Joe Reynolds (Wissahickon)
5 Kyle Wamsley (Fuji)
6 Paul Martin (West Virginia)
7 Greg Ferguson (Fort/GPOA)
8 Bill Elliston (Ideal Tile)
9 Joey Thompson (Balance Bar/Devo)
10 Bobby Lea (Fuji)
11 Mike Friedman (Fuji)
12 Andrew Wulfkuhle (Wissahickon)
13 Nathan Diebert (Faulkner Honda)
14 Jonathan Hansen (Snow Valley)
Elite Women
1 Amber Itle (Wissahickon)
2 Sami Fournier (Velo Bella)
3 Betsy Schauer (Fort/GPOA)
4 Julie Lewis (Team Lake Effect)
5 Laura Hanlon (Fuji)
6 Lisa Most (Wissahickon)
7 Carolyn Hall (Mid-Week)
8 Tammy Ebersole (Evolution Racing/IF)
9 Sheila Senft (Airborne)
10 Michelle Suplick (Wissahickon)
11 Donna Anderson (Evolution Racing)