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Cycle Works/Moose's Tooth Battle Royale MTB #3
Platte River State Park, July 14, 2002
Ridin' For The Truth
By John Lefler, Jr
The Cycle Works/Moose's Tooth Battle Royale switched gears Sunday afternoon with the third of four events, which included an individual time trial and mountain cross. After weeks of blistering hot conditions, the course at Platte had become a dust bowl at best leading up to Sunday's competitions. However, a couple of rainy evenings earlier in the week provided just enough moisture to harden the otherwise loose course.
Returning to the site of this years Battle Royale opener and the Nebraska NORBA State Championship on September 15th, the 5 mile loop at Platte River State Park offered up a taxing combination of climbs, technical descents and a rocky creek beds to traverse.
Wasting no time in his comeback to racing, second place finisher Kent McNeill (OBCR) stormed the 1 lap time trial in 00:20:21.
For the second week in a row, McNeill made an impressive showing, but was just edged out by the seemingly unbeatable Darin Schlake (NHS/UNMC/Team Kaos), who covered the circuit in 00:20:20.
As the sun set on Platte River State Park Sunday, the hills heated up with the first-ever mountain cross competition in Nebraska. A talented field of 30 riders battled through four rounds of downhill racing, scuffling with not only each other, but a technical run that featured tight turns, abrupt drops and a lung-busting opening sprint section.
For the uninitiated, mountain cross is a discipline of cycling that pits four riders against each other racing down a hill, which usually includes some technical sections, as well as jumps and tight turns. The first two riders across the line in each heat move on to the next round.
The final competition on Sunday included NHS/UNMC riders Matt Gersib and Darin Schlake along with Greg Theiss (OBCR) and Andy Drake.
In the finale, Gersib and Schlake gunned for the hole-shot edging Theiss and Drake heading into the first of two slight rises in the course. It was the decisive move of the day that gave Gersib his fourth straight first place finish and the championship.
"The course was slick today, but I felt good and could really carry my speed throughout the course," a winded Gersib explained after his fourth and final run.
Following him across the line was second-place finisher, Darin Schlake. Theiss and Drake trailed in to take third and fourth place, respectively.
The Cycle Works/Moose's Tooth Battle Royale concludes on Sunday, September 15, 2002 with the Nebraska NORBA XC State Championship.
Junior Boys (12 & under) 1 Cain Silvey 50.45 Expert Women (Open) 1 Anne Sykes (BBC) 30.24 2 Theresa Murphy (BBC) 0.19 Beginner Men Masters (35+) 1 Ray Breedlove 27.36 2 Scott Woods 5.21 3 Scott Applegate 1.47 4 Jay Jones 1.26 5 Kurt Silvey 7.32 DNF Don Raskey Beginner Men (19-34) 1 Wesley Trout 25.43 2 Adam Trout 3.15 3 Scott Showen 3.14 4 Rick Beason 4.04 5 Jeremy O'Neil 6.40 DNF Franz Rinkleff (Flat City Cycling) DNF Paul Garvin Clydesdale (Open) 1 Todd Sieler (OBCR) 28.23 Sport Men Masters (35+) 1 Kristian Ehrhorn (BBC) 25.04 2 Rollie Feilmeier 0.15 3 David Norckel 0.22 4 Joel Moritz (Andrew's Bicycle) 0.58 5 Sean Craig (Runza) 1.45 6 Dan Hansen 3.27 Sport Men (19-34) 1 Corey Godfrey (KAOS) 22.56 2 John Lefler (NHS/UNMC) 0.29 3 Cvo Chris Vanooyen (KAOS) 0.38 4 Tyler Carmichael (NHS/UNMC) 1.11 5 Jerick Wilson (BBC) 1.17 6 Matt Stricken (Snort) 1.18 7 Greg Theiss (OBCR) 1.35 8 Jason Tollefson 3.06 9 Josh Shear (Straws/Sticks/Bricks) 4.10 10 Brian Fettin (OBCR) 4.22 11 Andy Drake 4.28 12 Dave Soflin (Runza) 5.25 Expert Men Masters (35+) 1 Paul Chapman (NHS/UNMC/KAOS) 21.04 2 Daniel Kelley (Snort) 1.02 3 Greg Shimonek (Bikeway BensoN) 1.43 Expert Men (19-34) 1 Darin Schlake (NHS/UNMC/KAOS) 20.20 2 Kent Mcneill (OBCR) 0.01 3 Kevin Wilkins (NHS/UNMC/KAOS) 0.15 4 Matt Gersib (NHS/UNMC/KAOS) 0.30 5 Jon Rokke (Snort) 0.51 6 Jesse Petersen (NHS/UNMC/KAOS) 0.52 7 Stephen Jarrett (OBCR) 0.53 8 Michael Johnson (Snort) 1.25 9 Jim Winklepleck 1.35 10 Andrew Crooks (OBCR) 2.02 11 Rick Barrett (UNL Cycling) 2.45