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Dauphiné Libéré
Photo ©: Sirotti

 UCI codes explained

Wooden Wheels Cyclocross - C1

Verge MACC Series Race #3, Granogue, Delaware, USA, October 22, 2005

2004 results    Results

Bessette, Trebon and Johnson blast Granouge

When Tim Johnson announced that he was leaving the European road racing peloton he shared with Lance Armstrong to return to his American roots, American cyclocross fans shed tears of joy. After all, Johnson has the distinction of being the first American to medal at the world cyclocross championships when he won a bronze in the Under 23 category in 1999. So, it was only appropriate when Johnson and his wife, Canadian Superstar Lynn Bessette, finally returned to the Verge Mid Atlantic Cyclocross Series, that Mother Nature would also shed tears of joy. Lots of tears. Too many tears. So many tears that the luscious Granouge Estate, just outside of Wilmington, Delaware, was turned into a slippery, muddy mess that made it difficult for some of the world's best bike racers to even stay upright. But, what some would call appalling conditions, others would call classic cyclocross weather. And those who braved the weather were treated to an epic, entertaining battle that will be long remembered.

America's fastest 'cross racers assembled on Saturday, October 22, for the first of two days of UCI sanctioned, internationally-ranked racing - first at Granouge Estate in Delaware, then to be followed by Sunday's event at Ludwig's Corner Horse Show Grounds in Pennsylvania. And it was Canadian Lynn Bessette of Team Cyclocrossworld.com-Louis Garneau and Ryan Trebon of Kona Bikes who fired the first shots. Bessette, who has been dominant during the first part of the 2005 cyclocross season, did not get the holeshot at the start of the race - but it didn't matter because she had powered into the lead by the end of the first lap, accompanied only by Maureen Bruno-Roy of Independent Fabrications. Meanwhile, last week's winner, Idaho's Georgia Gould (Kona Bikes) got a slow start which was further compounded by a bobble on the treacherous off-camber downhill sweeper that is the defining feature of this course. Already dragging her inside foot like a motorcycle racer, Gould was surprised when her other foot accidentally unclipped causing her to daffy-duck her way to the bottom of the hill. "In the past, something like that would have ruined my race," said Gould afterward. "But I've been working on that, and I just told myself that my whole race wasn't going to go like that."

Gould made steady progress through the field, eventually passing for second place before setting off after Bessette. As the last lap began, the light rain that had come and gone all morning turned into a downpour. Gould appeared to be the faster rider at the end of the race, but Bessette had already established a huge margin that just couldn't be erased and won easily. In comments afterward, Bessette inadvertently gave insight into the inner workings of the mind of a top-level competitive athlete, "I liked the course. It was fun, but not at first. In training, I just didn't like it. But in my mind, when you're racing and the whistle blows to start the race, I can just feel how the course flows."

Following the Women's race, the Men's half of Saturday's Pro Double-Header lined up to great anticipation. Among the favorites were Bessette's husband and teammate Tim Johnson, the bronze medallist in the Under 23 class in the 1999 World Championships. Other riders to watch were 2003 USPRO Road Race Champion and cyclocross legend Mark McCormick (Team Cliff Shot) and last week's winner Ryan Trebon out of Oregon and representing Kona Bikes. At the start, it was Trebon and teammate Barry Wicks controlling the field with Johnson coming from the rear - the penalty for having not scored any UCI cyclocross points for two years while he was road racing in Europe.

Soon into the race, however, it became clear that it would that this year's race would be a two-man battle, and a study in contrasts. Ryan Trebon is 6'5" tall, compared to Cyclocrossworld.com-Louis Garneau's Tim Johnson who is all of 5"9". And while there are many places where being built like a giraffe is an advantage for Trebon, this wasn't one of them. Trebon's size made negotiating the grease-like mud awkward, while Johnson's low center of gravity and years of experience let him maintain his momentum in places where other riders were coming to a near halt. Trebon, however, showed that he was simply the most powerful rider in the race as he gained and re-gained time in all of the straight sections of the course. Nowhere was this more evident than when he tripped over the hurdles with just over two laps to go and went from leading the race to being almost 200 yards behind Johnson. Once back to the long, straight asphalt hill that forms the course's start/finish straight, Trebon sprinted and closed most of the gap before heading back onto the mud. And so it went, Johnson the technician and Trebon the powerhouse in a constant give and take depending on who's strength suite the particular part of the track they were on at any given time. In one half-mile stretch of serpentine turns, they swapped the lead four times. The final result looked like a script from the old TV show "Home Improvement". Ryan Trebon, like Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor, may have fallen down a lot, but "more power" won the day.

Afterwards, both Trebon and Johnson were smiling and laughing like a couple of brothers after a water balloon fight. Said Trebon, laughing, "it was slick. It would look like it was solid but it wasn't. I crashed there, I crashed over there. I tripped on the barricade. But it was really fun."

Fifteen minutes later, second-placed Johnson was still pumped at his successful return to the highest level of cyclocross racing. As he started to change into dry clothes, he looked up, smiled a huge smile, and said, "That was so much fun. That was a blast. That's why I love 'cross."

Race notes:

For the second week in a row, the Master's race was decided in a sprint, with Mike Yozell winning a thriller at the line. Yozell sprained his ankle Thursday and had difficulty walking after the race.

In the B race, Ray Ignosh was unable to start due to a knee injury. Steve Cummings of the University of Texas retained his Verge Mid Atlantic Cyclocross Series leaders jersey with another convincing win.

Results

Elite men
 
1 Ryan Trebon (USA)            59.11
2 Tim Johnson (USA)             0.08
3 Barry Wicks (USA)             1.50
4 Mark McCormack (USA)          3.12
5 Matt White (USA)              3.45
6 Jesse Anthony (USA)           4.07
7 Jonathan Baker (USA)          4.11
8 Matt Kraus (USA)              4.56
9 Ben Jacques-Maynes (USA)      5.16
10 Zak Grabowski (USA)          5.30
11 Adam Hodges Myerson (USA)    5.46
12 Chris Mcgovern (USA)         6.00
13 Ryan Leech (USA)             6.13
14 Joshua Snead (USA)           6.26
15 Noah Taylor (USA)                
16 Nathan Chown (Can)           6.43
17 Molly Cameron (USA)          6.47
18 Sten Raeymakers (Bel)        7.13
19 John Hansen (USA)            7.32
20 Greg Marini (USA)            7.46
21 Greg Wittwer (USA)           7.59
22 Justin Spinelli (USA)        8.07
23 Gunnar Shogren (USA)         8.08
24 Roger Aspholm (USA)          8.14
25 Tristan Galbraith (Can)      9.05
26 Kris Auer (USA)                  
27 Andrew Wulfkuhle (USA)           
28 Joseph Reynolds (USA)            
29 Dan Wilson (USA)                 
30 Weston Schempf (USA)             
31 Sean Galegher (USA)              
32 Jordan Kahlenberg (USA)          
33 John Degele (USA)                
34 Joseph Piccillo (USA)            
35 George Menard (USA)              
36 Ben Turner (USA)                 
37 Stuart Gillespie (USA)           
38 Ransom Weaver (USA)              
39 Brian Hayes (USA)                
40 Nathan Deibert (USA)             
41 Chris Newell (USA)               
42 Glenn Turner (USA)               
43 John Minturn (USA)               
44 Alistair Sponsel (USA)           
45 Nicholas Shaffer (USA)           
46 Colin Barry (USA)                
47 Greg Black (USA)                 
DNF Tyler Johnson (USA)             
DNF Jon Bruno (USA)                 
DNF Myron Baker (USA)               
 
Elite women
 
1 Lyne Bessette (Can)          39.24
2 Georgia Gould (USA)           0.55
3 Maureen Bruno Roy (USA)       1.10
4 Barb Howe (USA)               1.36
5 Christine Vardaros (USA)      2.10
6 Tara Ross (Can)               2.21
7 Melanie Swartz (USA)          3.50
8 Mackenzie Dickey (USA)        4.11
9 Hollie Mcgovern (USA)         4.29
10 Rebecca Wellons (USA)        4.38
11 Betsey Schauer (USA)         5.09
12 Pauline Frascone (USA)       5.23
13 Anna Milkowski (USA)         6.48
14 Kamy Tremblay (USA)          7.17
15 Alicia Hamblen (USA)         7.48
16 Megan Bilodeau (USA)         8.07
17 Lesley Chown (Can)          10.31
18 Lisa Most (USA)             10.35
19 Lisa Vible (USA)            11.08
20 Tammy Ebersole (USA)             
21 Heidi Von Teitenberg (USA)       
22 Michele Moffat (USA)             
DNF Brenda Bahnson (USA)            
 
Junior men 17-18
 
1 Nick Bax (USA)               55.42
2 Michael Adashek (USA)             
3 Taylor Geib (USA)