Posted by Editor on 12/10/06
NECCS Caster's 'Cross Grand Prix - Rhode Island, USA
Report courtesy Milliman Media Group
The calendar may say December but the weather said otherwise at Sunday's final round of the 2006 Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross Series, the Caster's Cyclocross in Warwick, Rhode Island. The '06 Series closed out just as it began, with temps in the 50s and Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) and Tim Johnson (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com) stamping their authority all over the Elite Women's and Men's events. Besette's win, her fifth in five Series starts, cemented her position as the 2006 Verge NECCS overall champion while Mark McCormack (Clif Shot) took home the overall title for the Elite Men, his fifth in the past six years.
Never one to take the easy way out, Bessette opted to race the B Men's event just prior to the Elite Women's race, accumulating a solid 90 minutes of 'cross racing on the twists, turns, and sandy beach runs of the Goddard Park course. Bessette finished fifth in the men's race and credited the extended preview of the race course for her flawless performance against the Elite Women. Up-and-comer Deidre Winfield (Velo Bella-Kona) dropped 2005 Verge NECCS champion Mo Bruno Roy (Independent Fabrication-Wheelworks) to take second.
"I saw where I could carry speed and what the right way was to go around the turns," said Bessette. "So I could just sit back on the first lap, knowing I had the course figured out. I made my moves in the corners, which was pretty fun. It was a big deal for me to win the New England Series and it's a great way to end my season."
On the men's side, Series leader McCormack had to hold off the challenge of youngster Matt White (FiordiFrutta) in order to win his fifth NECCS title. White went off the front on the first lap, knowing he only had to finish one spot ahead of McCormack to take the jersey. He was joined by Johnson, who made the pace a bit too hot and dumped White into no-man's land after three laps. With Johnson dashing off to a convincing win McCormack caught and passed White to wrap up the season-long title.
"Winning the Series was always a season goal for me," said McCormack, who finished third on the day behind Tristen Schouten (Trek-VW). "I would have liked to win today because I won on this course last year but getting another New England 'Cross championship really means something to me."
"I felt pretty good out there," said race winner Johnson, whose Sunday victory runs his winning streak to three. "Nationals is obviously really important and I feel pretty good going into it."
1 Tim Johnson (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) 57:35
2 Tristan Schouten (Trek/VW/Michelin) at 1:12
3 Mark Mccormack (Team Clif Bar) 1:15
4 Matt White (FiordiFrutta) 1:46
5 Jesse Anthony (Team Clif Bar) 1:51
6 Adam Myerson (Nerac-Outdoorlights.com Pro Cycling) 2:01
7 Erik Tonkin (Kona)
8 Mathieu Toulouse (Team Maxxis Cyclocross)
9 Johannes Huseby (FiordiFrutta Elite Cycling Team) all s.t.
10 Jamey Driscoll (FiordiFrutta Elite Cycling Team) 2:07
1 Lyne Bessette (Cyclocrossworld.com) 41:33
2 Deidre Winfield (Velo Bella-Kona) at 0:20
3 Rhonda Mazza (Team S&M/Vanilla Bicycles) 0:45
4 Maureen Bruno Roy (Independent Fabrication/Wheelworks) 0:48
5 Christine Vardaros (Lotto) 1:10
6 Rebecca Wellons (Gearworks/Spin Arts Cycling) 1:12
7 Melanie Swartz (Velo Bella - Kona) 2:07
8 Amy Wallace (RGM Watches - Richard Sachs) 2:29
9 Betsy Shogren (FORT Factory Team) 2:47
10 Pauline Frascone (Independent Fabrication/Kempner) 2:52
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