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Dam Cross (SCPS #7) - C2
Hansen Dam Park - Los Angeles
California, USA, November 9, 2008
Jones and Lloyd prevail in California's only UCI event
By Dave Sheek
It was a "dam" bumpy 'cross race for winners Christopher Jones (Sonic-Jittery Joes-Louis Garneau) and Rachel Lloyd (California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized) at stop seven of the SoCalCross Prestige Series (SCPS). Southern California hosted only its second UCI cyclo-cross race ever and the only UCI race in the state of California this season.
The event was held in Los Angeles at the Hansen Dam Park and Recreation Area which offered an impressive backdrop for UCI-level racing. The 1.9km course was dynamic with two long paved straights, a couple of off camber slippery root turns, a bumpy approach to the Clif Bar-Kool N Fit double barriers and the Michelin jet-setter hill tested riders' power as they approached the end of each lap. The jarring flat sections of the course punished racers each lap, making tubulars a good call for the day. Some racers even put Vaseline inside their gloves.
The women approached the line first with more than just local SCPS competitors crowding the ranks. Last year's Dam Cross winner, national cyclo-cross world team member Rachel Lloyd (Cal Giant), along with Barbara Howe (unattached) joined the field in search of precious UCI points. Other notable women in the field included Velo Bella's Kari Studley, masters cyclo-cross champion Shannon Gibson, national medalist Kristi Berg and two-time national cyclo-cross champion Coryn Rivera (Team Redline).
As the women headed out it was not young Coryn Rivera taking the usual lead but rather the powerful Rachel Lloyd. So Cal's 17-year-old stars, Coryn Rivera and Kendall Ryan, followed her wheel closely as the lead group broke away quickly including Howe, Studley, Berg, Gibson, Carolyn Popovic and Dorothy Wong. It took some time for this group to break apart on the bumpy circuit. Lloyd continued to set the pace of the lead group first losing Ryan who took a spill in the sand pit.
Halfway through the race Lloyd pulled away from the lead group and never looked back. She continued her attack, opening a huge gap, which kept her in the lead to earn her second SoCalCross UCI win. Rivera and others might have just gone out too strongly as somewhere along the way Howe and Studley made their move to pass Rivera. In the end, Barbara Howe finished second on the day followed closely by Studley in third. The Redline women, Rivera and Berg, rounded out the top five in fourth and fifth place.
Like the women's field, more than the usual local racers stepped to the line to earn valuable UCI points in the Men's Elite field. The men's pace was fast from the gun and quickly set by Washington's Russell Stevenson (Redline) who blew open a gap on the field less than halfway through the first lap. Stevenson was commanding the race like he has this season in his home state. However, the dry California air would not allow him to keep his blistering pace for long.
In the third lap Chris Jones and So Cal's U23 star Chance Noble made a break for Stevenson. Noble could not cling to Jones' wheel in the pursuit leaving Jones to catch Stevenson on his own. Once Jones made contact Stevenson was happy to grab onto his wheel for a respite from the strong winds.
While the top three were displaying some impressive speed, not far behind was the first chase group and the real battle on course. The chase group consisted of Sid Taberlay (RockNRoad), Mark Noble (Bailey Bikes), Brent Prenzlow (Celo Pacific/Alan), Bart Gillespie (Monavie-Canondale), Nor Cal's Justin Robison (CalGiant), Ryan Iddings (LaPierre), Gary Douville (Team Platinum) and Nor Cal's U23 star Jeremy Ferguson (CalGiant).
The duel for first between Stevenson and Jones ultimately came down to the last lap. Jones put his final moves on Stevenson, bursting through the last two technical sections and opening more than a 20 second gap for the win. Stevenson, who also showed some of the day's most impressive racing, finished second with U23 favorite Chance Noble rounding out the podium in third.
More information about the SCPS series is at www.SoCalCross.org
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by SCPS
Men 1 Christopher Jones (USA) Sonic-Jittery Joes-Louis Garneau 59.18 (24.77 km/h) 2 Russell Stevenson (USA) Team Redline Bikes 0.21 3 Chance Noble (USA) Cal Giant-Specialized 0.50 4 Sid Taberlay (Aus) Sho Air - Rock N Road 1.27 5 Mark Noble (GBr) Bailey Bikes 1.31 6 Justin Robinson (USA) California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized 7 Brent Prenzlow (USA) Celo Pacific-Alan 8 Bart Gillespie (USA) Monavie-Canondale 2.01 9 Ryan Iddings (USA) Lapierre 2.31 10 Gary Douville (USA) Team Platinum 3.19 11 Jeremy Ferguson (USA) California Giant Berry Farms-Specialized 3.47 12 Jason Siegle (USA) Team Cicle Bear Valley Bikes 4.08 13 Frederick Bottger (USA) Vitamix-Six Tu Fit 4.42 14 John Behrens (USA) Bailey Bikes 4.51 15 Michael Lee (USA) Trek-VW-Jbl 5.15 16 Jason Lowetz (USA) Bearclaw 5.42 17 Brandon Gritters (USA) Rock N Road 6.34 18 Robert Downs (USA) Planet Bikes 6.57 19 Damon Roberson (USA) Unattached 7.48 20 Donny Carroll (USA) Dewalt Racing 8.19 21 Ted Willard (USA) Bike Religion 9.46 One lap behind 22 Kyle Gritters (USA) Rock N Road 23 Garnet Vertican (USA) Bear Valley Bikes 24 Lyle Warner (USA) Helen's-Subaru-Gary Fisher 25 Leonard Lawrence (USA) Successfulliving.com Two laps behind 26 Derek Herman (USA) Cicle Bear Valley Bikes DNF Eric Rasmussen (USA) Porcupine-Specialized DNF Mike Tettleton (USA) Bearclaw Women 1 Rachel Lloyd (USA) California Giant Berry Farms - Specialized 40.25 (22.71 km/h) 2 Barbara Howe (USA) Unattached 1.59 3 Kari Studley (USA) Velo Bella - Kona 2.07 4 Coryn Rivera (USA) Team Redline 2.11 5 Kristi Berg (USA) Redline Bicycles 3.09 6 Carolyn Popovic (USA) Team Cicle 4.16 7 Shannon Gibson (USA) Velo Bella - Kona 4.45 8 Dorothy Wong (USA) Team Cicle 6.07 9 Kendall Ryan (USA) Team Cicle 7.20 10 Lisa Crowe (Can) Team Cicle 7.30 11 Christie Pleiss (USA) Team C.I.C.L.E Presented By Voler 8.17 12 Sarah Kaufmann (USA) Roaring Mouse - Titus 8.45 13 Heidi Kanayan (USA) Team Cicle 9.36
2007 Tristan Schouten (USA) Planet Bike