Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sheppard out for October with broken finger

Canadian citizen and Bend resident Chris Sheppard said Tuesday that he'll have to miss this weekend's Canadian national championships as well the upcoming U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross and North American Cyclocross Trophy series races. The Santa Cruz/Shimano/WTB rider was putting the final touches to his form when he crashed descending some singletrack.

Sheppard has been a familiar face in the Oregon racing scene since taking up residence in Bend, and he was recently the top Oregon finisher at the second NACT series race in Washington, chasing from the back of the pack at the UCI Rad Racing GP to finish 8th in a race won by former world champion silver medalist Jonathan Page.

X-rays confirmed a fracture of the proximal bone in Sheppard's ring finger on his left hand. The injury has left him in a soft cast for a month, and Sheppard said he won't risk re-injuring the finger because he could face surgery if another mishap were to occur.

"My entire 'cross season revolved around the October races", Sheppard said via e-mail. "Santa Cruz Bicycles stepped up to continue what has really been a fun, successful season. Yes, missing nationals while being fit hurts, but I am more disappointed for letting down my sponsors."

Sheppard hopes to make a return to cyclocross action at the Boulder Cup UCI weekend.

(Photo courtesy of Chris Sheppard)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Cross Crusade #1 photo gallery posted online

The complete cycling action photo gallery for Cross Crusade #1 at Alpenrose is now posted on line HERE.

Pacific Power's Oregon Junior Cyclocross Series notches second race, five more to go

The Pacific Power Oregon Junior Cyclocross Series is in full swing with two of the seven series races now under its belt.

Twenty-four juniors competed at the first race and 26 lined up for the latest running at Heiser Farms, part of the Willamette Valley Cross Series.

The junior series so far has five two-race winners who are well on their way toward the abundant swag ponied up by sponsors Redline and Kona, including four bicycles/frames. Scoring is based on the best five-of-seven races, so there's still time for others to get their hat in the ring.
Current two-race winners:

Carina Hahn (Team Rose City) Girls 17-18
Marisa Reid (Z Team) Girls 13-14
Haley Wilson (Pacific Power Blue Sky) Girls 10-12

Kolben Preble (Hammer Velo) Boys 17-18
Sam Rosenburg (Hutch's-OIC) Boys 13-14

Complete OBRA results are HERE.
The series started Sept. 13 at Eugene's Psycho Cross #1 and continues Oct. 17 at the Psycho Cross #2 in Eugene.

There will be two grand prizes for the girls, and two for the boys. The grand prizes will be awarded on a lottery system, with one lottery ticket per race entered. The series winner will get 15 additional lottery tickets, 14 more for second, and so on. The grand prize lottery will be on the Nov. 29 race In Eugene. Riders do not need to be present to win but must participate in at least 4 races to qualify. Scoring is based on the best five of seven races.

Entry is just $5 per race and there will be a free 10 minute cyclocross clinic before the 10 a.m. starts. There's more information on the race flier HERE.

The next race in the seven-race series is the Eugene Psycho Cross #2 Oct. 17.

Race 3: 10/17 -- Saturday, Psycho Cross(Eugene)
Race 4: 10/24 -- Saturday, Willamette Valley Cross(Salem)
Race 5: 11/7 -- Saturday, Willamette Valley Cross(Salem)
Race 6: 11/21 -- Saturday, Psycho Cross(Eugene)
Race 7: 11/29 -- Sunday, Psycho Cross(Eugene)

Mugging in Massachusetts: The Jonathan Page - Tim Johnson crash video

This video, captured by Colt at, shows Cannondale/ rider Tim Johnson moving inside Jonathan Page at the NACT race in Gloucester, Massachusetts, and cutting out the Planet Bike rider's front wheel while passing. Page is obviously less than pleased with the maneuver, and you can hear what sounds like Jeremy Powers (Cannondale/ instructing his teammate Jamey Driscoll, "We're waiting."

Page will now be heading off to Europe for his world cup campaign while Johnson focuses on the NACT and the USGP, but it will be interesting to see if this incident fuels a longer feud between two of America's best cyclocross riders.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Oregon's Sue Butler leads women's NACT series; Page earns leader's jersey in men's competition

GLOUCESTER, Mass. -- Maybe there was magic in the mud in Gloucester as the second round of the North American Cyclocross Trophy saw Jonathon Page’s U.S. finale, Tim Johnson’s return to form, and Natasha Elliott’s stamp of dominance.

With previous NACT leader Christian Heule back in Europe, Page (Planet Bike) moved comfortably into the red jersey with his win on Saturday and second place on Sunday.

The team has three riders in the top 10 with Jamey Driscoll in third, Johnson in fourth and Jeremy Powers in sixth. With Page heading back to Europe, the green and black onslaught of Cannondale/ will look to take control of the series as the NACT crosses the border into Toronto.

Bissell rider Andy Jacques-Maynes' fifth-place finishes on both days put him in – you guessed it – fifth place overall. Newcomer to ‘cross Chris Jones kept his eye on the podium with third- and sixth-place finishes. The Champion System rider sits in seventh overall, ahead of Danish champion Joachim Parbo and Jesse Anthony (Jamis). Russell Stevenson of Washington rounds out the top 10.

The Kona contingent was noticeably absent from Gloucester this past weekend, as they headed to Portland to help christen the 2009 Cross Crusade at Alpenrose, but a return of the bright orange boys could contribute to some more jostling in the series standings.

Portland's Sue Butler (Monavie-Cannondale) had her work cut out for her as she raced to keep her NACT leader’s jersey. Although top rival Helen Wyman (Kona) has returned to Europe for World Cup racing, Louis Garneau rider Natasha Elliott’s back to back wins moved her into second place overall, only 25 points behind Butler. With the series moving to Canada, Elliott may use the hometown crowd to wrest the jersey from Butler.

Although she didn't race in Gloucester, Luna's Alison Dunlap moved down one position into fourth overall. Laura Van Gilder (C3 Athletes Serving Athletes), Mo Bruno-Roy (Mm Racing/Seven Cycles), and Amanda Carey (Kenda/ all used Gloucester to move into fifth through seventh. Though Wendy Williams stayed in Oregon to race, the Hudz-Subaru rider kept her ninth place behind the also absent Kari Studley. Rebecca Wellons (Team Plan C) rode her way to 10th overall with two top 10 finishes at Gloucester.

With Elliott headed for the home-field advantage in Canada, and both Powers and Johnson past winners in Toronto, the 2009 GNC Toronto International Cyclo-Cross will ensure the NACT series continues as a points battle. Organizers also have some extracurricular events planned. On Friday, Oct. 17, Urban Male Magazine in conjunction with Cameron’s Brewing Co will host the TICC pre-race party at downtown Toronto’s iconic Brunswick House (481 Bloor Street West).

Registration is open at and more information can be found at and With the largest cyclocross purse in North America, racers’ eyes are on the prize as the series hits its halfway point. For more full standings and information, see Follow us on Facebook and on Twitter at

(Submitted by the NACT)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Trebon and Williams conquer Crusade opener

Riding his singlespeed, Ryan Trebon led a trio of Kona riders onto the podium of the Men's A race at Alpenrose Sunday during the Cross Crusade opener. Wendy Williams (Hudz-Subaru) battled Alice Pennington (Veloforma) throughout the Women's A race and moved ahead on the last lap to cruise in for the win.

More than 1,400 riders flooded the fields of Alpenrose Dairy in southwest Portland for the opening salvo of the 2009 Cross Crusade. Despite rain earlier in the week, blue skies and pleasant temperatures on race day kept the course from showing any signs of mud.

The course featured a starting pavement loop through the wild west town, long stretches of fast-but-bumpy grass pastures with some slightly off-camber turns, a steep-but-short run up, a winding loop in and out of the velodrome onto more grass, and then a treacherous cement staircase with a single switchback.

Trebon and Wicks played hookie from the North American Cyclcross Trophy circuit this weekend in Gloucester, Mass., to race a little closer to home. Trebon warmed up for the Men’s A race by taking out the field in the Singlespeed event. Then he rode the same singlespeed bike to a win in the Men’s A race in front of Kona teammates Wicks and Erik Tonkin.

“I didn’t want to fly across the country,” Trebon said of his decision to skip Gloucester and stay close to home for the Cross Crusade opener at the dairy, giving the team mechanic a break as well. “This is a great race. It’s hard. I like it better than the USGP races we do at PIR.”

Team S&M’s Sean Babcock, Vanilla’s Shannon Skerritt and Portland Bicycle Studio’s Molly Cameron joined the Kona trio at the front of the men’s field in the early running. But when Wicks and Trebon decided to drop the hammer in the closing laps of the 60-minute race, the pair quickly built a 15-20 second gap over the rest.

Babcock and Tonkin formed a chase behind. Skerritt, a Masters national champ in 2005, said he tried to hang with Kona’s dynamic duo early but lost touch when Trebon put the hammer down after the steep cement staircase.

The battle for third was left for Tonkin and Babcock, who rides for a club sponsored by Tonkin’s Sellwood Bicycle Repair shop. In the finale, the pair exited the last set of barriers together and turned a 180 onto the velodrome apron for the sprint to the finish about half a lap away. Babcock got stuck behind traffic and was forced to go onto the track’s banking while Tonkin took the shorter route on the apron. The popular Portland ‘cross world cup veteran held off the charging young rider and got third. Babcock settled for fourth. Skerritt was fifth. Cameron experienced technical difficulties but hung on for sixth.


Current Masters 40-44 champion Wendy Williams (Hudz-Subaru) and Veloforma’s Alice Pennington made it a two-rider battle royale at the front of the 60-minute Women’s A race.

Distancing themselves from the rest of the field early in the race, the pair punched and counter-punched throughout the race. Although nothing stuck, the constant back and forth drove the pace and gave the pair a sizeable lead over the rest of the field.

“It was a lot of back and forth,” Williams said of her daylong dual with Pennington. “Things went well until I crashed.”

Williams took a fall exiting the velodrome as the men’s field was entering through the same gate, but the Hudz-Subaru rider managed to fight her way back to Pennington, who came into the Cross Crusade opener having won three races in a row.

With time winding down, Williams poured on extra coal in the closing laps and opened a gap on her Veloforma rival, finishing comfortably ahead of Pennington for the win and the early series lead. Team S&M’s Rhonda Mazza won the battle for third ahead of Megan Faris (River City Bicycles) and Emily Van Meter (Hudz-Subaru).

The complete Cycling Action photo gallery for this race is now posted online HERE.

Cross Crusade #1
Alpenrose Dairy
Oct. 4

Men A
1. Ryan Trebon (Kona)
2. Barry Wicks (Kona)
3. Erik Tonkin (Kona)
4. Sean Babcock (Team S&M)
5. Shannon Skerritt (Vanilla Bicycles)

Women A
1. Wendy Williams (Hudz-Subaru)
2. Alice Pennington (Veloforma)
3. Rhonda Mazza (Team S&M)
4. Megan Faris (River City Bicycles)
5. Emily Van Meter (Hudz-Subaru)