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Michigan Cyclo-cross Series #1

Stoney Creek Metropark, Shelby Twp., MI, Saturday September 27, 2003

Tailwind.net/Cane Creek sweeps podium, Weinert and Mayer take series jerseys

By Jer Walker

The start of the 2003 Michigan Cyclo-Cross season got underway with fast and furious racing. Unseasonal weather left the temperature in the low 60's with the wind howling. None of this would matter as the Elite Men and Women were all on missions. Taking place at Stoney Creek Metropark, the season opener offered quite a technical and challenging course. With only a paved climb, the rest of the course featured no less than 14 hairpin turns. This would prove to be in the favor of the winners.

Elite Women

Alicia Mayer (Orbea/Copper Canyon) was fresh off a long season on the NORBA circuit and looking to extend her season's success. It wouldn't be a cake walk though as she would be challenged by Anne Schwartz (Flying Rhinos) in the opening laps of the seven lap event. The two built quite a lead over the rest of the field as they went on to finish more than two minutes ahead of the other women. Mayer proved to be too strong for Schwartz though as she pulled ahead before the bell. With a margin of nine seconds, Mayer crossed the line in 50:45, taking the first Louis Garneau leader's jersey of the series.

Elite Men

The elite men's field has been getting deeper in talent and 2003 only looks to keep that trend going. While only 25 men toed the line, they were all gunning for the top spot and didn't make the race easy for anyone. Defending Michigan State Champion Jeff Weinert (Tailwind.net/Cane Creek) got off to an early lead just after dumping off the paved start and onto the bumpy technical grass. Jer Walker (Tailwind.net/Cane Creek), Jon Card (Tailwind.net/Cane Creek), and Nate Griffith (Ford/Giant Bikes) were hot on his wheel and looked to challenge for the lead. Once the course started to twist and turn, Weinert used his svelte frame to his advantage and weaseled away from the trio in tow. By the first set of barriers, Weinert opened up a gap and was off.

Walker, Card, and Griffith were riding well together with Card and Walker forcing Griffith to lead the group. Lap three of the nine lap event saw Card attack and get up the road. It would be a little too late though to catch the leader on the road. Once Card was away, Walker tried to go across, but Griffith was hanging tough. Mike Wissink (Wheels In Motion) and Robert Herriman (Essex Brass) were in hot pursuit. Once Griffith let up, Walker took his opportunity and attacked quickly building a 10 second gap with three laps to go. This proved wise as Wissink and Herriman would soon overtake Griffith. At the end of nine laps, Weinert cruised to victory in 56:31 to take the Louis Garneau Leader's jersey with Card taking second and Walker completing the sweep in third. Herriman got the best of Wissink for fourth with Griffith hanging in for sixth.

Racing continues in Michigan and gets even hotter with the Michael R. Rabe Midwest Cyclo-Cross Championships on Saturday October 4th. This will be the first UCI sanctioned event in Michigan and is already seeing elite's registered from New England, Ohio, and Canada. The Michael R. Rabe Midwest Championships take place at Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills, MI. Racing gets underway at 10:00 AM and culminates with the elite men at 3:00pm. For more information, contact Robert Linden at 248-634-6178 or visit www.tailwind.net.


Elite Women
1 Alicia Mayer (Orbea/Copper Canyon)     50:45.9
2 Anne Schwartz (FRCC)                    0:10.6
3 Susan Schubel (Revolution)              2:29.1
4 Anne Grofvert (Riverfront Cycling)      4:32.2
5 Liz Gentner (Wolverine Sports CLB)      5:07.5
Elite Men
1 Jeff Weinert (Tailwind.Net/Canecrk)    56:31.8
2 Jon Card (Tailwind.Net/Canecrk)         0:58.3
3 Jer Walker (Tailwind.Net/Canecrk)       1:23.8
4 Robert Herriman (Essex Brass)           1:35.2
5 Michael Wissink (Wheels In Motion)      1:40.0
6 Nathan Griffin (Ford/Giant Bikes)       1:59.3
7 Anthony Bruley (Suburban/Wolverine)     2:47.6
8 Robert Foshag (Revolution/Giant)        2:56.7
9 Gary Deangelis (Planet Cycle)           3:36.6
10 Rob Selle (Self-S Racing)              3:53.7 

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