Results and Reports for December 8-9, 2001


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Verge New England Series American Express Financial Advisors Cyclo-Cross

Merrimack, New Hampshire, December 9, 2001

Johnson escapes to victory

U.S. national champion Tim Johnson made the most of his last race in the 2001 Stars and Stripes jersey, darting away from two breakaway companions to claim victory at the American Express Financial Advisors Cyclo-Cross on Sunday.

Johnson had been swapping the lead with Tilton, N.H. native Jonathan Page (Richard Sachs) and Mongoose/Hyundia's Todd Wells when he suddenly attacked on a flat and powered away from his rivals. Page, who had driven the break with a furious assault from the starter's gun, hesitated momentarily, but that was enough to give Johnson the gap he needed with three laps to go.

The Saturn rider finished 9 seconds ahead of Wells and 49 seconds ahead of Page.

"I love courses like this," said an exuberant Johnson. "These are the best, where you give 100 percent of yourself, and you get back 110 percent."

Johnson's win came on what may have been the roughest course in the 2001 Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross series -- a roller-coaster of a circuit at Wasserman Park made treacherous by a fresh blanket of snow.

The rustic setting may have been straight out of Currier and Ives, but the race contained all the drama and mayhem of a Picasso when Page -- just back from a successful cyclo-cross season in Europe -- ripped away at the start. Such was Page's fury that even Johnson seemed taken aback.

"The entire first lap I thought Page was going to kill me," Johnson admitted afterward. "The pace really scared me."

"I just got off the plane and I wanted to go out and blow myself up," Page explained. "I wanted to gauge my fitness before next week."

"Next week" is the U.S. national championship cyclo-cross race in Baltimore, and it's clear that Johnson and Page weren't the only ones keen on a good showing in Merrimack to prepare for the season's biggest prize.

Wells, who had been doing most of the work once the trio got clear of the huge chasing pack, flatted after one of the course's tricky descents and seemed beyond redemption. Unwilling to concede, however, the Arizona resident picked up a new bike in the pit, remounted and erased what had been a 20 second deficit to Page and Johnson in little more than a lap.

Johnson seemed to have eyes in the back of his head, however, because just as Wells was about to make contact, the Saturn rider blitzed off and stayed away for keeps.

"I fought back," Wells said. "But just about when I thought I was back on Johnson's wheel, Page seemed to bobble and Tim attacked. That was it."

Team Devo's Adam Craig, who just won the Division 1 collegiate mountain bike championship for the University of Maine, was perhaps the crowd favorite as he repeatedly bunny-hopped the 16-inch barriers that forced every other rider to dismount. Craig finished fourth on the day, just ahead of Saturn's Mark McCormack.

"Once you give up five or ten seconds on a course like this, it's over," McCormack said. "The technical sections and the slop limit what you can do physically to make up time."

Nonetheless, fifth place was enough for McCormack to retain the leader's jersey for Verge series with just one event left. He leads Johnson by five points, while Wells sits a distant third.

Among women, Lyne Bessette (Saturn) proved that her early season winning streak was no fluke. The Canadian rider, who's in just her first season of cyclo-cross, rang up her fourth victory in the Verge series by riding away from a powerhouse field.

"I fell twice on the first lap," Bessette said. "But I just had to make some adjustments, and after that, I was fine. I did some running while I was off the bike for the past month and that helped me."

Behind Bessette, the battle for second place in Merrimack was intense. For the first half of the race, Putney/West Hill rider Jodi Groesbeck -- the U.S. masters national champion -- kept a small gap ahead of JambaJuice's Mary McConnoloug, but the course elevation changes favored the latter. McConnoloug seemed to get stronger as the race wore on, while Groesbeck faded. By the finish, the JambaJuice rider was alone to claim the second spot on the podium.

"I'm a climber and technical rider," she said. "Grunting through the mud is not a problem. I love this pig slop."

By finishing about two minutes ahead of everyone else, Bessette locked up the Verge championship. That's not bad, considering she entered the first several races just for fun. Now, with the Verge series title under her belt and VeloNews' female cyclo-cross rider of the year award, Bessette says she's going to take the sport a bit more seriously and compete at the 2002 world championships in Belgium next month.

Meanwhile, the junior race completed Saturn's domination, as U.S. junior national champion Jesse Anthony notched his fourth win of the Verge series in convincing fashion. Only Jeremy Powers of Team Devo and Chris Hill of NCC/ could keep Anthony in their sights, but even then, just barely. Powers finished a strong second, while Hill claimed third place.

The 2001 Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross Series concludes on December 22 with the Castor's Cross in So. Kingston, Rhode Island.


Elite Men
1 Tim Johnson (Saturn)                                       55.45
2 Todd Wells (Mongoose Hyundai)                               0.09
3 Jonathan Page (Richard Sachs)                               0.49
4 Adam Craig (DEVO)                                           2.56
5 Mark McCormack (Saturn)                                     4.28
6 Josh Anthony (Saturn Development)                           4.49
7 Johanes Huseby (CCB/VW/IF)
8 Lawrence Perera (Essex County Velo)                         4.53
9 Justin Spinelli (SAECO)                                     5.03
10 Michael Broderick (Jamba Juice)                            5.13
11 Troy Michaud (Eurotek)                                     5.29
12 Justin Lillie (Trek/VW)                                    5.39
13 Rob Hult                                                   5.50
14 Adam Hodges Myerson ( Cyclo-Cross Team)         5.27
15 J.D. Bilodeau (NCC /                          6.30
16 Maxwell Kullaway (Seven Cycles/BRC)                        6.37
17 Arik Jon Holm                                              7.11
One lap behind
18 Don Mills (Wheelworks/Cannondale)
19 Jan Wiejak (CT Fuji/Verge Test)
20 Aaron Millet (Essex County Velo)
21 Eugene Ruiter (Trek/VW Goodales)
22 Nate Rice (UVM)
23 Mark Abramson (Boston Cyclocross Assoc.)
24 Brant Hornberger (NCC/
25 Steve Roszko (NCC /
26 Jeffrey Craddock (CCB/VW/IF)
27 Kirk Albers (Jelly Belly)
28 John Verheul (Ideal Tile/Brielle Cyclery)
29 Amos Brumble (CCB/Volkswagon)
30 Todd Rowell (NEBC / Cycle Loft)
31 John Meerse (Buffalo Bicycling Club)
DNF Coley Cole (BRC)
DNF Curt Davis (Wheelworks/Cannondale)
DNF Chris Sacramone (CS Ardagna)
DNF Eric Bowker (Catamount)
Elite Women
1 Lyne Besset (Saturn)                                       41.13
2 Mary McConneloug (Jamba Juice/Gunnar Cycles)                1.28
3 Jodi Groesbeck (Putney/West Hill)                           2.05
4 Elizabeth Coleman (SOBE/HEADSHOK)                           3.33
5 Shauna Gillies-Smith (Gearworks/SRP)                        3.47
6 Alicia Genest (Richard Sachs)                               4.15
7 Katrina Davis (Richard Sachs)                               4.26
8 Susan MacLean (BOB)                                         3.52
9 Kathryn Roszko ( Cyclo-cross Team)               5.03
10 Yvonne Ilton (verizon wireless)                            5.49
11 Anna Milkowski (Gearworks/SRP)                             6.04
12 Sara Cushman (Gearworks/SRP)                               8.05
13 MaryAnne Martinez (NEBC/CYCLELOFT)                         8.45
14 Katherine Farago (NEBC / Cycle Loft)                       9.53
15 Carrie Richesson                                          10.23
One lap behind
16 Mary Georgetti (NEBC/CYCLELOFT)
17 Sarah Unl (UVM)
18 Rachel Brown (NCC /
19 Suzanne Filipone (ACC)
20 Michele Smith (Boston Cyclocross Assn)
21 Joanne Macayeal
22 Karen Paukulis (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
23 Elizabeth LaFavour (Wheelworks/IF)
24 Michelle Kersbergen (NCC /
DNS Emily Thorne (
Master Men 35+
1 Paul Curley (Gearworks/SRP)                                47.08
2 Bevan Quinn (Putney/West Hill)                              0.08
3 Michael Bernard (Arc En Ciel)                               1.08
4 Bob Bisson (SRP Gearworks)                                  1.48
5 John Mosher (NEBC/Cycleloft)
6 Kevin Callahan (bicycle link)
7 Paul Lynch (Missing Link Bicycle Club)
8 Tom Stevens (Gear Works)
9 Eric Marro (Team BOB/Skofield Builders)
10 Daniel Collins (MBRC)
11 James Black (ECV)
12 Todd Cassan
13 Christopher Smith (NEBC/CycleLoft)
14 Peter Nelson (MassBay)
15 Doug Aspinwall (NCC /
16 James Peterson
17 Jody Dean (Minuteman Road Club)
18 William Sawyer (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
19 David Carlson (BOB/Skofield Builders)
20 Brian McInnis (Travis Cycle)
21 Jay Carrington (BOB)
22 Michael Dameron (Southern New England Masters)
23 Wayne Cunningham (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
24 Timothy Bailey (Bicycle Link)                              6.57
25 Paul Weiss (Portland Velo Club)                            7.06
26 Richard Perrotti, Jr (Travis Cycle)
27 Chris Mears
28 Timothy Shea (BOB)
29 David Schwachte (Team Hawiian)
One lap behind
30 Sal Ardagna (CS Ardagna)
31 David Genest (Richard Sachs)
32 David Leedberg (GearWorks / SRP /Spin Arts)
33 Jeff MacLean (BOB)
34 Steven Bonadio (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
35 Daniel Hurley (BRC/Fintage/ATA)
36 Hasan Duymazler
37 Sean LeBas (Laurel Bicycle Club)
38 Armand Pantalone (B.O.B.)
39 Tim Lucia (NEBC/CycleLoft)
40 John Roche (Net1Plus/DataPro/Fitchburg Cycling Club)
41 Garabed Minasian
42 Brian Bigelow (BOB)
Juniors 15-18
1 Jesse Anthony (Saturn Development)                         45.34
2 Jeremy Powers (Team Devo)                                   0.38
3 Chris Hill (NCC/
4 Jamey Driscoll (GMBC Excite smartFUEL)                      2.33
5 Konrad LeBas (CCB International)
6 Sam Benson (Team Devo)                                     10.41
7 Joshua Benson (Mohawk Valley Cycling Club)
8 Kevin Wolfson (NEBC / CycleLoft)
9 Troy Wells (Kingston Cyclery)
One lap behind
10 Stephanie White (NHJCA)
11 Alex Terrero (NHJCA)
DNF John Hanson (NECSA/MFSR)
Amateur Men
1 David Welling (UCONN)                                      46.57
2 Joseph Saperstein (Coyote Hill)                             2.03
3 Eric Bowker (Catamount)                                     2.07
4 Alan Starrett (Bikeman/Bath Cycle)                          2.26
5 Brendan Sullivan (PEDROS)
6 Chris Raymond (BC2 Connoly Racing)                          2.56
7 Brian Buettner (West Hill Shop)                             3.07
8 Isaac St. Martin (New Hampshire Cycling Club)               3.47
9 Randall Descarreaux (C.S. Ardagna Racing)                   3.52
10 Mark Donahue (Southern Me. Cycling Club)                   3.58
11 Benjamin Peters (UVM)
12 Christopher Cyr (Portland Velo Club)
13 Jonathn Murray (Dreambikes)                                4.26
14 Justin Torrellas (Clinton)                                 5.04
15 John Buras
16 Christopher White (B.O.B.)                                 5.05
17 Aaron Mulloy (S3W Sports)
18 Malcolm Toynbee (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
19 Ethan Parsons (NCC/                            5.48
20 Michael Cole (Landrys-Litespeed)                           6.14
21 Walter Conley (CCB International)
22 Ian Everard
23 Chris Mears                                                6.39
24 Matt  Manna (NEBC/Cycleloft)                               6.47
25 Robert Frechette (Crum)                                    7.21
26 Robert Kramer (MBRC)                                       7.29
27 Chris Milkman (West Hill Shop)                             7.30
28 Hunter Pronovo (Grouppo Sporto Europeo)                    7.39
29 Brian Dahlmann (B2C/Community)                             8.03
30 Todd Cassan
31 Joe Rodrigues (Cyclonauts)                                 8.17
32 John Burkhardt (NEBC/Cycle Loft)                           8.31
33 Jeff Papineau (Cyclonauts)                                 9.07
One lap behind
34 Stephen Cavalear (Pro Cycles)
35 Ryan Themig (B2C/Community)
36 Bruce Pierce (B2C/Community)
37 Brian Samia (Crum)
38 Darrin Beek (NEBC/Cycle Loft)
39 Mark Robson (Univerity of Connecticut/ Team Bicycle Alley)
DNF Jay Francis (NEBC/Cycle Loft/EMC)
DNF Byron Holt (BRC/Vintage/ATA)
DNF Thom Reid (Team Horst)
DNF Todd Crisafulli (Boston Bicycle Club/Community Bike)
DNF Richard Battaglia (Southern Maine CC)
DNF Mark Arrington (BRC/Vintage, etc./ATA cycles)
Beginner men
1 Bill Farrell (Kimball Union Academy)                       25.53
2 David Schachte (Team Hawiian)                               0.07
3 Roger Goulart
4 Robert Bauer (Minuteman road Club)
5 Phillip Stern (NEBC / CycleLoft / EMC)                      0.57
6 Matthew Shoemaker                                           1.20
7 Billy Whitcher (NHCC)                                       1.26
8 Paul Alachoyan (NECSA)                                      1.42
9 William Hallahan (Derby Farm Flowers & Gardens)             2.09
10 Mark West (
11 John Reilly (Boston Bicycle Club/Community)
12 Mike VanRandwyk
13 Paul Brais (Team Hawiian)                                  2.48
14 Jason Arcelay (NEBC / CycleLoft / EMC)
15 Stephen Kelley                                             2.56
16 Paul Bain (Boston Bicycle Club/Community)
17 Peter Hutchins (Northampton Cycling Club)                  3.09
18 Adam Kline (Travis Cycles)                                 3.13
19 Tony Delongne                                              3.50
20 William Keiler (White Mountain Velo)                       4.07
21 Brian Bicki (Team Hawiian)                                 4.35
22 Mike Long (Travis Cycles)                                  4.44
23 Corey Richards                                             5.11
24 John Hood (NEBC / CycleLoft / EMC)                         6.02
25 Mark Cross-Powers                                          6.11
26 Justin Haber                                               9.26
B Women
1 Catherine Dudley (UNH)                                     31.37
2 Amy Burrer (Bike Alley)                                     1.50
3 Sheila Vibert (UNH)                                         2.24
4 Lori Whynot (NEBC / CycleLoft / EMC)                        3.23
5 Barbara Burnes (BOB)                                        7.38
Cub Juniors 10-14
1 Mathew Beriau (Bike Alley)                                  9.05
2 Charles Marzot (Corner Cycle Cycling Club)
3 Timothy Halliday                                            2.03
4 Kyle Turgeon                                                1.57
5 Allie Johnson                                              16.55
6 Alexa Stern (NEBC / CycleLoft / EMC)                       18.57

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