Ian Field makes his way around the natural barriers. Cyclocross Magazine

Ian Field makes his way around the natural barriers. © Cyclocross Magazine

by Molly Hurford

Charm City in Baltimore, Maryland, has been hot and dry for the fast few years, which makes sense since as the second race weekend of the season, it’s still practically summertime. However, in keeping with the streak of bad weather on the East Coast for the past month, the race opened with a chilly, drizzling morning: perfect cyclocross weather. Racers and spectators alike complained about the cooler conditions, since this early in the season, the legwarmers are still buried in attics and basements. However, the cooler weather didn’t seem to hurt the Euro visitors, and Helen Wyman and Ian Field repeated their stellar performances from last week at Nittany Lion Cross.

Helen Wyman (Kona) took an early and commanding lead in the Elite Women’s race, which started with a long uphill road section into a sharp left-hand turn where the screech of carbon wheels on brakes and the smell of burned rubber are palpable. She developed a gap quickly, though last year’s MAC champion, Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom/C3), developed a gap of her own in second place trying to chase Wyman down. In the chase group were five women: last weekend’s second place Joyce Vanderbeken from Belgium, UK racer Gabby Day (Renner Custom CX), Joyce Van der Beken (Cycling Team Vermeeren), and Arley Kemmerer (C3 – Athletes Serving Athletes). The group chased Van Gilder but unlike last week, Van Gilder would not be caught by the Belgian.

The podium was rounded out by Joyce van der Beken, with Kemmerer in fourth and Day in fifth.

Cyclocross Magazine caught up with Wyman immediately after her race to get the scoop on her US early season dominance. She said, “It was good. It was really twisty! There were a thousand corners, and you’d be like, ‘dammit, I forgot that corner.’ But it was fun! You had to sprint every second and a half.”

Compared to last week, Wyman said that this course “held her interest because you never knew what would happen next.”

We also chatted with the hometown favorite, Laura van Gilder, who, until the Euro invasion, dominated the MAC series. Happy with her second place finish, van Gilder said, “It felt great today. I like all these courses that we’ve been doing but I especially like the Charm City course. I felt like I had really good flow and a lot of power today. I’m very satisfied … It was all about not making mistakes. I was just trying to be really consistent and gauge my results.”

The men’s race started like a road race, the men stayed in a pack through the sharp turn and remained in what was essentially a peleton for the rest of the first lap. Ian Field (Hargoves Cycles) and Tom van den Bosch (Aa Drink/Leontien.Nl)  developed a fast lead, working together, though Field pulled away fairly quickly. A chase group of ten men followed, including some of the Philadelphia Cyclocross School men and Team Mountain Khakis’ Travis Livermon.

By the second lap, the gap between Field and van den Bosch had increased to ten seconds, and the chase group was ten seconds behind van den Bosch.

By the middle of the Elite Men’s race, Field had developed an even bigger gap on his one competitor, Tom van den Bosch, the Belgian racer. These racers held a gap of over a minute on third through fifth, Mike Garrigan (Lapierre Canada), Eric Brungger (Philadelphia Cyclocross School U19) and Tim Van Nuffel (Dcm-Gb Vorselaar), after 40 minutes of racing.

Field took the uncontested win, with van den Bosch easily picking up second. Third was claimed by Garrigan, with Brungger right on his wheel, looking disappointed with his finish.

After the race, we chatted with Field, who said, “It’s nice to travel all this way and get a win. It’s different for me racing for the win. I really only get to do that in the UK once, twice a year. You change your mentality of racing, just because in Belgium you’re constantly pressing on the pedals and chasing, chasing, chasing. So it’s really nice to get the experience of winning at cross. And winning is a habit, so…”

Van den Bosch was also excited to talk about his stay in America and racing so far: “People are very friendly here. The tracks are a bit different than they are in Europe, it’s crazy. Today it was a race of many corners, I think too much corners.”

When asked if he was going for the win tomorrow, he said, “I hope so.”

In addition to having Euros in attendance at the first few MAC races, there are a few changes. This season the MAC series has been trying something new, by having the 2/3/4 Men’s race following the Elite fields. In doing so, they hope to address the problem of a lack of spectators for the elite races, and it’s been met with mixed feelings from the racers. Additionally, rather than having two days of UCI racing per MAC weekend, only Saturday is a UCI race, making Sunday’s race less dense in terms of elite racers looking for UCI points. This is just one of the many changes throughout the East Coast cyclocross season.

Helen on the stair run. Cyclocross Magazine

Helen on the stair run. © Cyclocross Magazine

Elite Men Results:

1FIELD IanHargroves Cycles
2VAN DEN BOSCH TomAa Drink/Leontien.Nl
3GARRIGAN MikeLapierre Canada
4BRUNGGER EricPhiladelphia Cyclocross School U19
5VAN NUFFEL TimDcm-Gb Vorselaar
6FAWLEY BryanOrbea Usa
7WULFKUHLE AndrewC3-Athletes Serving Athletes
8SCHEMPF WestonC3 Athletes Serving Athletes P/B Twenty20 Cycling
9KNAPP RyanBob’S Red Mill Cyclocross
10LIVERMON TravisSmart Stop-Mock Orange P/B Ridley
11WITTWER GregAlan N. America Cycling Team
12WINTERBERG LukasPhiladelphia Cyclocross School U19
13MULLER LukasPhiladelphia Cyclocross School U19
14MIHALIK MichaelFreddie Fu Cycling Team
15JOHNSON JoshBikereg.Com
16CUMMINGS StephenC3-Athletes Serving Athletes
17ADAMSON ShaunCycle-Smart
18BLAIR PatrickAdventures For The Cure
19HAMBLEN JonSmartstop/Mock Orange Bikes P/B Ridley
20DRISCOLL AdamAdventures For The Cure
21WYATT NathanaelCarolina Fatz Cycling Center Pb Industry Nine
22BRADLEY PatrickPhiladelphia Cyclocross School U19
23RYAN AlexChampion-System/Cannondale
24ADASAVAGE GeraldBicycle Therapy/Melitta
25ORDONS StevenHuman Zoom
26NIWINSKI NoahCarroll Composites Factory
27CONSORTO ChristopherBikeline
28SEMIAN ZacharyVan Dessel Factory Team
29STORM CharlieStorm Racing Team
30MACKAY ThomasC3-Athletes Serving Athletes
31STATMAN KatrielVan Dessel Factory Team/West End Bikes
32BECKER CollinRace Pace Bike Shop
33BERGEY GunnarC3 Athletes Serving Athletes
-2GEROW DanielWolverines/Acfstores.Com
-3EPSTEIN GavrielCrca/Foundation
-3KAHLENBERG JordanAdventures For The Cure/Giant Bicycles
-4SHAW AndrewNcvc / Unitedhealthcare
-4SHANEFELT GreggBob’S Red Mill

Elite Women’s Results:

1WYMAN HelenKona Factory Racing
2VAN GILDER LauraC3 – Athletes Serving Athletes
3VANDERBEKEN JoyceCycling Team Vermeeren
4KEMMERER ArleyC3 – Athletes Serving Athletes
5DAY GabriellaTeam Scott Contessa
6THIEMANN NicoleTeam Cf
7GAVIN KristinTeam Cystic Fibrosis
8POPOVIC CarolynTeam Cf
9SILLIMAN ErinAlan N. America Cycling Team
10BUERKLE PattyVa Asset Group P/B Artemis/Trek
11BARBOSSA StaceyElite Endurance Training Systems
12DOWIDCHUK KatrinaTeam Tbb/Deep Blue
13TUFANO AllysonWhcc/Sportif Coaching Group
14SHIELDS EmilySmartstop/Mock Orange Bikes P/B Ridley
15SHIELDS KatherineSmartstop/Mock Orange Bikes P/B Ridley
16FREDERICK RebeccaKelly Benefit Strategies/Lsv
17MASCELLI ErinElite Endurance Training Systems
18BOWMAN BrittleeCrossresults.Com P/B Jra Cycles
19BISHOP MichelleCannondale Cadence Women’S Racing
20HARLOW ElizabethC3-Athletes Serving Athletes
21WULFKUHLE KathleenC3-Athletes Serving Athletes
22POPE JenniferVanderkitten Racing
23DUBECK KimberlyTrestle Bridge Racing
24SCHEFFENACKER KristyC3- Athletes Serving Athletes
25STEVENS AngelinaGarneau Custom P/B Powerbar
26LARSEN LaurelNovember Bicycles Cx Experience
27HURFORD MollyTeam Rockstar Games / Signature Cycles

Can’t get enough of the Euro invasion? Check out the gallery for some race pictures: