The CLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cross Team turned in an impressive showing this past weekend at the US Cyclo-Cross Nationals in Bend, OR.
Starting off the weekend, the Junior 15-16 race was icy and exciting, with all four team members cruising into the top 10. Zane Godby took the hole-shot and led the race for several laps before a late-race crash set him back a few spots. Zane battled back for an incredible 2nd place ride. Curtis White rode steady all day and finished 3rd. Nate Morse helped the team set an early fast pace in the front group and finished 6th, and Zack Gould rode steady in the top-10 all day to finish in 10th.
In the Junior 17-18 race, Euro Cross Camp member David Kessler ended up down for the count with the flu, so he did not make the trip to Bend. Californian-via-Sweden Bjorn Fox showed all of his hard training and cold-acclimation paid off, with a strong race where he moved up every lap and just barely lost the sprint for 5th.
In the Under-23 race, all four CLIF BAR teammates got themselves into good position early, with Mitchell Hoke and Alex Howes contributing strong efforts to the chase group, and the Mullervy twins moving up steadily. In the end, all four would suffer untimely crashes and/or flat tires, affecting their finish placings, but they had great races. Conor Mullervy ended in 7th, Alex Howes in 8th, Mitchell Hoke in 13th, and Kevin Mullervy in 19th.
Sunday ended the Nationals weekend with Collegiate and Elite races. In the Division II collegiate race, Mitch (Colorado College) and the twins (Mesa State College) went to battle for their respective schools. All three were in on the action and finished well. Mitch took 3rd, Kevin 5th, and Conor 11th. In the Division I race, Brady Kappius took the hole shot and traded the lead with a Fort Lewis rider. Eventually Kappius had a crash and dropped to 3rd, but held on for a strong finish.
In the Elite race, TEAM CLIF BAR's Troy Wells took 13th, and Kappius came back for his second race of the day to get an impressive 23rd.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
On Sunday Dec. 6 at the final USGP race in Portland, OR, CLIF BAR Development Team's Yannick Eckmann continued the strong history of the team by capturing the US Gran Prix of Cyclo-Cross Series title for Junior 17-18. Eckmann battled again in the final USGP race with Cal-Giant's Cody Kaiser. The two raced neck and neck all season, with Kaiser winning many of the USGP races and Eckmann sweeping the New Jersey weekend. Eckmann's consistency paid off, with no finishes below 2nd place in the Series, and he locked up the overall title with a second place on Sunday in Portland.