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US Cyclocross championships - CN

Portland, Oregon, USA, December 10-12, 2004

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December 12: Elite Men, 60 minutes

Live Coverage

15:02 PST   
Welcome to the live coverage of the US Cyclocross Nationals held in Portland, Oregon. The women have just completed their race with an aggressive battle from the start. Colorado rider Katie Compton caused a bit of an upset taking the win from favourites Ann Knapp and Gina Hall.

The race started with Knapp putting the pressure on from the gun causing a break of four riders inclucing Hall, Compton and Mary McConneloug. On about lap three Compton took the better line around a few of the corners and was able to hold the lead from thereon in. She won the race solo with Knapp and Hall fighting it out for second place behind her. Eventually Hall took second in a sprint against Knapp and McConneloug came in later for fourth place.

In the men's race Jonathan Page is considered the outright favourite. Many are not wondering whether he'll win but by how many minutes he'll win by. He comes off a very successful season in Europe and is aiming to take out his third consecutive National Championship today.

Amazingly enough after a couple of very muddy days, the sun came out this morning and the course is actually starting to dry up. It is very likely that the men will be able to ride most of the run-ups making a very different race than expected. It is still very very cold and windy. The wind is actually a big factor in the race.

15:08 PST    6mins/54mins to go
The race is underway and Jonathan Page took the lead out of the starting blocks and crested the first run-up leading the bunch. The laps are about seven minutes long and the race is 60 minutes long, so the men will probably do about eight laps today.

15:11 PST   
Challenging Page today will be the likes of Ryan Trebon who has been riding very well this season as well as Mark McCormack. The likes of Marc Gullickson, Barry Wicks Todd Wells will also be up there for the battle.

15:18 PST   
The riders are beginning their third lap right now and Jonathan is in the lead as predicted, but Trebon is still very close to him currently sitting about five seconds back. Right up there, trailing Trebon, are Todd Wells and Mark McCormack and the crows is going wild up on the hill that looks over the course as they go by.

15:23 PST   
At the end of the women's race, Rob Karman caught up with the winner, Compton who was very excited. She has been doing a lot of racing with the Cat 3 men back home in Colorado to get ready for this. Last time she rode Nationals was back as an espoir in Kansas City. Despite being National Champion now Compton will not ride the World Championships as representing her country will prevent her from taking part in Paralympic events in the future. Compton competed in the track racing in the Paralympics in Athens this year and won two gold medals and a silver.

15:28 PST    26mins/34mins to go
With the leaders on the fifth lap now they are setting a faster pace than expected with lap time at about five and a half minutes. Page has slightly increased his lead to Trebon and now sits 12 seconds ahead. Another 15 seconds behind Trebon is Todd Wells sitting in third place.

Cheering them on is a huge crowd armed with drums and cow bells. The more noise they make the better as Portland is currently bidding to be the venue for the 2009 Cyclocross Worlds.

15:40 PST    39mins/21mins to go
Trebon has made an awesome comeback and has caught Page as we come into the final 20 minutes of racing here. Page got caught behind some lapped riders on one of the run ups and had to run a part of the course that he had been riding. Not long after Trebon actually caught Page and the pair are now together with a 25 second gap to Todd Wells who still sits in third.

15:41 PST   
Jackson Stewart is having a great ride and currently sits in fourth place on the course and Gullickson has really moved up in the last few laps moving from about 16th place ealier in the race and now sitting in fifth place.

15:42 PST   
The spectators are on the edge of their seats as the race is turning out to be a closer battle than expected.

15:48 PST    45mins/15mins to go
Jonathan Page has attacked Trebon and has a three second lead with only 13 minutes to go (meaning about two laps). Barry Wicks and Todd Wells are together about 30 seconds down and Gullickson is flying in fifth place.

15:50 PST   
It looks like there are two battles out there today. The battle for the win between Page and Trebon and the battle for third place between Wicks, Wells and possibly Gullickson who is now about 10 seconds behind but moving up fast. This will be an amazing comeback for Gullickson and a brilliant way to finish his career. This will be his last race as he has announced his retirement.

15:58 PST   
We are coming into the last meters of the race now with Page still holding his lead by only a few seconds. It looks like he's going to take the win.

15:59 PST   
Trebon is only three seconds behind him but that is too much as Page comes across the line for his third consecutive National Title. A very close race and awesome effort by Trebon to take second place.

16:00 PST   
Gullickson hasn't quite made it up to Wells and Wicks so third place will be fought out with a two up sprint finish. Wells is looking strong.

16:01 PST   
They are coming up to the line for the sprint. They trail by about 40 seconds to the leaders and Wells takes the sprint for third place.

16:02 PST   
Barry Wicks takes fourth and Gullickson is coming in solo not far behind for fifth place.

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