_G5Y9262.jpg Mild, sunny conditions greeted the racers on Friday morning as the junior men and women competed for eight titles. Compared the Thursday morning’s early races on frozen ground, Friday morning offered a warmer race with early morning temperatures in the high 30s. A light snow and rain from the previous night added a bit of moisture to the course, making the morning’s junior races were muddy, slippery affairs.

It’s a rare opportunity for a junior racer to come back and defend a national championship. Doing so requires early talent and maturity to grab a victory in the first of a two-year window (or second in the 10-12), and then the teenage dedication to see training through to win the next year as well. Yet three junior men and one junior woman returned to Kansas City in their same age group in attempt to defend their titles. With an extra year of growth and training, it’d be easy to expect a repeat, but new competitors arrive and old competitors mature, train, and ponder victory over the past year as well. Friday’s junior racing demonstrated this unpredictability, with upsets, repeats, crashes, mechanicals, and during-race handshakes. Full report by USA Cycling with contributions by Cyclocross Magazine:

_G5Y8549.jpg With staggered starts, all four junior women’s age divisions began their quest for a national championship on the mud-slick 1.67-mile course at Kansas City’s Tiffany Springs Park on Friday morning. The 17-18 group started out hot-and-heavy, but quickly settled down as the seven starters hit the slick technical off-road portion of the course. Moving up an age group didn’t however seem to stall multi-time national road champion and defending 15-16 national cyclo-cross champion, Coryn Rivera (Tustin, Calif./Team Redline) who took the early lead and never looked back. Rivera earned her 22nd Stars-and-Stripes by only thirty-three seconds over silver medalist Anna Young (Madison, Wis./Planet Bike).

The majority of the 15-16 junior women’s group suffered a major crash in the first turn as Alexis Ryan (Ventura, Calif./Team C.I.C.L.E) slipped and ultimately fell to the back of the field. The former mountain bike national champion however would not be deterred and, after a tire change, surged to take a six second victory over Clarissa Freeman (Albuquerque, N.M./KHSnm.com). Sarah Huang (Kenosha, Wis./Hayes Disc Brakes) grabbed an impressive win in the 13-14 age division, defeating last year’s 10-12 national champ, Andrea Casebolt (Olympia, Wash./Rad Racing NW) by nearly one minute. Casebolt outsprinted Laurel Rathburn (Monument, Colo./Team 5280 Magazine) to add a silver medal to her collection. After finishing fifth last year, Mina Anderburg (Louisville, Colo./Mudskippers) was determined to bring home a Stars-and-Stripes jersey in the 10-12 year-old group. The 10-year-old did not disappoint, crossing the line 48 seconds ahead of Eden Webb (Louisville, Ky./Red Zone Cycling) and the other seven competitors in the youngest age category.

“It was so much fun. I didn’t want to stop,” said Anderburg, who completed another full lap following the finish.

Next up were the 15-16, 13-14 and 10-12 year-old junior men’s contests. The 15-16 race ultimately served as a precursor to the 17-18 contest with defending champion Jeff Bahnson (Newark, Del./Secret Henry’s Team-Van Dessell) and Yannick Eckmann (Boulder, Colo./Clif Bar) battling it out. After crashing in lap one, Bahnson was able to catch up to Eckmann and eventually built a 40 second gap to defend his national title from a year ago. Logan Owen (Bremerton, Wash.) defended his 13-14 national championship over the nearly 30-rider field. Owen had his Ridley bikes stolen just a few weeks before nationals, and Redline stepped up to offer Owen equipment support and a chance to ride for them. Owen did not disappoint his new white knight sponsor. In the last Ian McShane (Louisville, Ky./Red Zone Cycling) laid down the hammer in the 10-12 year-old race, winning by a nearly eight-minute margin. Many of the younger riders were lapped by Bahnson and other older juniors, creating confusion for racers who thought they still had another lap.

The most anticipated of the day’s events, the 17-18 junior men’s race, did not disappoint, featuring a pair of young powerhouse riders going head-to-head. Four-time 2008 USGP winner Zach McDonald (Bainbridge Island, Wash./Classic Cycles) and the world’s sixth-ranked junior and defending champion Luke Keough (Sandwich, Mass./CL Noonan-KAM-Coast to Coast) started the race one and two and after 40 minutes of battling, that’s how they would end up. The pair, traded brief attacks but were generally content to just mark each other at a steady pace for the first four of the five-lap affair. Each waiting for the other to make a mistake on the slick course, they cruised the pavement stretch, confident in their gap over the others. With one to go, the two rolled slowly down the road, stretched, shook hands, and then started a final one lap race. It wasn’t until the final descent that McDonald, an expert downhill racer in his summers, was able to open up a gap with his superior descending skills. Keough did his best to stay in contact, but the pace was too much, and the defending champion crashed twice and would finish in second, 16 seconds in arrears. A hard charging Gavin Mannion (Dedham, Mass./Hot Tubes) took third and Cody Kaiser (El Dorado Hills, Calif./Calif. Giant Berry Farms) was fourth. Despite starting near the back of the field, hometown favorite Chris Wallace (Shawnee, Kan./KCCX-Verge) rounded out the podium in fifth. With his win McDonald locked up one of five spots on the U.S. National Team that will be heading to the Netherlands on Jan. 31 to contest the UCI Cyclo-cross Junior World Championships. With a top-five finish in a World Cup race earlier this season Keough has also punched his ticket.

“I was hoping I could take it, but the slick conditions made it a fierce fight between me and McDonald,” said Keough who has been racing the European World Cup circuit this season. “The slick corners kept messing me up. The mud is really thin and slick over here and it’s really deep and thick over there. I think this race helped me think about what I need to focus on heading into Worlds.”

Photo Gallery:

Full Results:

Junior Women 10-12
11633 ANDERBERG, MinaLouisville, COMudskippers38:05.0
21637 WEBB, EdenLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling38:53.0
31639 WHITE, EmmaDelanson, NYCapital Bicycle Racing Club/CB39:12.0
41640 WELSHON, EllieEdgewater, COBlack Sheep Junior Cycling39:16.0
51644 SWARTZ, EmmaMadison, WIBrazen Dropouts39:29.0
61643 GATES, VictoriaFitchburg, MANEBC\Cycle Loft\Devonshire Den42:12.0
71641 ZOERNER, AshleyHighlands Ranch, COMudskippers45:31.0
81638 HALEY, Frances-JaneLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling48:02.0
DNS1636 TWINAM, MiaLittleton, COMudskippers CX Team
Junior Women 13-14
11291 HUANG, SarahKenosha, WIHayes Disc Brakes30:42.0
21294 CASEBOLT, AndreaOlympia, WARad Racing NW.31:30.0
31293 RATHBUN, LaurelMonument, COTeam 5280 Magazine31:34.0
41290 MOSSMAN, HannahCincinnati, OHOne Call Now31:58.0
51298 FOGG, TaylorColorado Springs, COMudskippers33:02.0
61296 SMITH, McCauleyBoulder, COTokyo Joes36:59.0
71295 WILLIAMS, KirstenLone Tree, COMudskippers39:58.0
81297 MC CORMICK, TaraLong Beach, CAOUCH Pro Cycling40:32.0
92224 REYNOLDS, HannahKansas City, KSSKC Racing+ 43:51:00
DNS1292 LIMESAND, Ellesnohomish, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline
Junior Women 15-16
1936 RYAN, AlexisVentura, CATeam C.I.C.L.E29:53.0
2930 FREEMAN, ClarissaAlbuquerque, NMKHSnm.com Junior Cycling Team29:59.0
3932 CATTELL, AshleyAuburn, WABicycle Centres/Collision-130:42.0
4935 WHITE, ElizabethBedford, NHNEBC/ Cycle Loft/ Devonshire D31:20.0
5931 SHIELDS, katherinesalisbury, NCCarolina Masters31:50.0
6937 LIMESAND, SamanthaSnohomish, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline31:58.0
7934 MORRIS, ColleenCincinnati, OHOne Call Now32:11.0
8933 SHIELDS, emilysalisbury, NCCarolina Masters33:04.0
9938 REYNOLDS, AislinKansas City, KSSKC Racing38:02.0
Junior Women 17-18
1941 RIVERA, CorynTustin, CATeam Redline25:57.0
2945 YOUNG, AnnaMadison, WIPlanet Bike26:30.0
3942 ANTONNEAU, KaitlinRacine, WINova/IsCorp27:42.0
4944 RYAN, KendallVentura, CATeam C.I.C.L.E29:42.0
5940 MORRIS, MichelleCincinnati, OHOne Call Now30:28.0
6943 GODBY, MadalynLousiville, CORocky Mounts32:11.0
7946 SCHAPKER, EmilyMerriam, KSRenaissance Cycyling36:18.0
Junior Men 10-12
1376 MCSHANE, IanLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling37:22.0
2385 HECHT, GageParker, COICCC45:15.0
3379 HALEY, GavinLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling46:27.0
4386 FRANCISCO, JamesLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling46:32.0
5384 HAAS, StephenLakewood, COBlack Sheep Cycling46:41.0
6395 BICKMORE, CadeLongmont, COFlatiron Flyers47:02.0
7380 GEARY, EvanSeattle, WAOh Boy Oberto!/Redline47:02.0
8394 GOLDBERG, NathanOverland Park, KSGP Velotek47:31.0
9383 HOGAN, BenLouisville, COChipotle-Titus48:03.0
10390 TODD, JoeyHarrisonville, MObike shack racing48:27.0
11381 COOPER, DrewKellogg, IABikes To You50:21.0
12382 MADIS, RyanHudson, OHOne Call Now54:12.0
13393 SWARTZ, CalebMadison, WIunattached57:16.0
14388 ELLIOTT, AaronHighlands Ranch, COInternational Christian Cyclin00:57:58:00
DNS389 BROWN, JonathanCovington, TNTriStar Cycling
DNF392 KEOUGH, Iansandwich, MACLNoonan/KAM/Coast to Coast
Junior Men 13-14
1900 OWEN, LoganBremerton, WANA30:18.0
2902 MORSE, NateCohasset, ALC.L. Noonan/KAM/Coast to Coast31:04.0
3915 CULLEN, JordanHudson, WIPlanet Bike31:04.0
4901 WHITE, CurtisDelanson, NYCapital Bicycle Racing Club31:38.0
5906 DESSAU, MichaelBoulder, COTeam 5280/Slipstream32:53.0
6907 VINCENT, Austinsimsbury, CTCLNoonan/KAM/Coast to Coast po32:53.0
7916 SCHILLING, jonathongrover, MOMesa33:04.0
8908 CLEVENGER, AustinBellingham, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline33:18.0
9919 FRANCISCO, JohnLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling33:18.0
10922 KIRSKE, JR., DavidSeattle, WARad Racing/Hagens Berman33:36.0
11913 GOULD, ZackBoulder, COClif Bar Cyclocross Developmen34:50.0
12923 HAUPT, IanWhitefish Bay, WIPlanet Bike36:01.0
13926 PARKS, DannyDallas, TXMirage36:01.0
14920 BOBERG, NilsShoreview, MNRidley Factory Team36:21.0
15911 PETERSON, RudyKalamazoo, MILittle Ceazars Kalamazoo bike36:21.0
16903 GOGUEN, peterhopedale, MAMRC38:01.0
17917 BREW, DANIELFayetteville, NCC4 Racing43:15.0
18924 LOMBARDO, DavidCrystal Lake, ILVerdigris Cycling45:16.0
19904 MADIS, ErickHudson, OHOne Call Now+ 1 Lap Down
20921 RENCK, SpencerLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling+ 1 Lap Down
21925 BARTA, WillBoise, IDBYRDS+ 1 Lap Down
22927 HUANG, SamuelKenosha, WIHayes Disc Brakes+ 1 Lap Down
23914 SIMON, CooperLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling+ 1 Lap Down
24928 PITT, JacobLeawood, KSSlimen Und Grossen+ 1 Lap Down
252239 ROTH, GarrettShorewood, WIendeavour+ 1 Lap Down
26929 BURKE, NoahLincoln, NEMidwest Wheelmasters+ 1 Lap Down
27905 CAMPBELL, SpencerNorthfield, NJCape Atlantic Racing/Team Beac+ 1 Lap Down
282238 ROMISCH, AndrewOverland Park, KSGP Velotek+ 1 Lap Down
DNS909 SPINKS, PeterLayton, NJCycles 54/YSG Racing
DNS910 VOLLERS, JR., PeterWoodstock, VTStart House / Vollers Law Raci
DNS918 DOWNING, Spencerboulder, COFlatiron Flyers
DNF912 LOCKE, ChristopherKansas City, MOCow Town Cycling
Junior Men 15-16
11650 BAHNSON, JeffNewark, DESecret Henry’s Team / Van Dess25:46.0
21651 ECKMANN, YannickBoulder, COCLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro26:36.0
31652 SPINKS, MatthewLayton, NJTeam Metra/Wendy’s p/b Victor28:00.0
41671 KESSLER, DavidLittleton, COCLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro28:18.0
51674 GODBY, ZaneLouisville, COClif Bar Development Team29:18.0
61654 KREBSBACH, ColinKent, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline29:42.0
71673 DILLMAN, AndrewFairdale, KYRed Zone Cycling30:18.0
81661 FOX, BjornStinson Beach, CAAbove Category Racing30:56.0
91662 LARK, BrianNew Albany, INRed Zone Cycling30:56.0
101657 RENWICK, EvanFederal Way, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline31:12.0
111668 OKEEFE, SamBaltimore, MDC3-Sollay.com31:38.0
121677 PREBLE, KolbenForest Grove, OROlsens Bikes31:38.0
132216 PACKARD, RyanArlington, MAQuadCycles32:04.0
141672 HAAS, Deanlakewood, CO5280 Magazine32:04.0
151669 MONROE, TravisCoeurd’alene, IDVertical Earth32:24.0
161665 DYER, JeremiahValdese, NCStudio7-Cyclocross32:30.0
171663 HOUSE, AaronGreat Barrington, MAHousatonic Wheel Club32:30.0
181653 BENDER, ZachGlen Rock, NJGS Park Ridge—Team Cyclespor32:30.0
191667 ANDERSON, DagBridgewater, NJTeam Somerset32:30.0
201666 STILWELL, ZachHudson, WIvassago33:47.0
211676 RATHBUN, RhysMonument, COTeam 5280 Magazine34:02.0
222219 VOLOTZKY, erikchatsworth, CAMajor Motion34:26.0
231658 GORRY, CypressPayson, AZ35:19.0
241656 GOGUEN, Tomhopedale, MAMRC36:01.0
251659 MARTI, NickEvergreen, CORMCEF37:33.0
261660 HALEY, LukeLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling38:30.0
272215 STULL, AaronParkville, MOEpic38:30.0
282220 DOBROZSI, SamuelLoveland, OHQueen City Wheels38:30.0
291664 BUSH, DanielLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling40:37.0
DNS1655 BERCAW, DrewNorth Canton, OHOne Call Now
DNS1670 FOX, BjornStinson Beach, CACLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro
DNS1675 KRISKA, MatusMount Airy, NCProhealth
DNS1678 NOLD, VincentLouisville, KYRed Zone Cycling
DNS1679 BERGEY, GunnarLederach, PABikesport
DNF2218 HAULMAN, JoeDenver, CO5280 Magazine
Junior Men 17-18
1456 MCDONALD, ZachBainbridge Island, WAClassic Cycles44:30.0
2455 KEOUGH, lukesandwich, MACLNoonan/KAM/Coast to Coast po44:46.0
3458 MANNION, gavindedham, MAHot Tubes Development Team45:17.0
4487 KAISER, CodyEl Dorado Hills, CACalifornia Giant Berry Farms/S45:29.0
5478 WALLACE, ChrisShawnee, KSKCCX/ Verge45:51.0
6461 GOGUEN, mannyhopedale, MAMRC46:27.0
7457 EMSKY, EricFall City, WARad Racing NW / Hagens Berman46:34.0
8498 SWEDBERG, BennyKent, WARad Racing/Hagens Berman LLC47:22.0
9469 COX, CodyColorado Springs, COCLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro47:22.0
10474 RYAN, MorganVentura, CATeam C.I.C.L.E48:01.0
11494 DOMBROWSKI, JosephMarshall, VAHaymarket Bicycles p/b Functio48:13.0
12475 TERRY, IanSeattle, WARad Racing/Hagens Berman48:25.0
13472 BARKER, AndrewLakewood, COCLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro48:46.0
14462 KEOUGH, jessesandwich, MACLNoonan/KAM/Coast to Coast po49:22.0
15476 WATSON-NORRIS, GabeOlympia, WARadRacing NW/Hagans Berman LLC50:05.0
16480 TRUJILLO, SkylerFort Collins, COBlack Sheep51:01.0
17496 HINKENS, Jackeden prairie, MNfccc51:01.0
18459 COTTLE, TannerSandy, UTPorcupine / Specialized Racing52:28.0
19492 BROWN, NathanCovington, TNHot Tubes Junior Developement52:30.0
20477 EDWARDS, AlexParkville, MOMesa Cycles Racing Team52:37.0
21467 HUSTON, CollinKennebunk, MECl Noonan/Coast to Coast/KAM53:17.0
22463 PSALTIS, KostaOlympia, WARadRacing NW/Hagans Berman LLC55:02.0
23465 ARNOLD, JacobCary, NCCycling Spoken Here55:32.0
24466 SHIPMAN, JohnKansas city, MORenaissance cycling56:03.0
25470 BLOCK, DavidPLYMOUTH, MNRidley Factory Team+ 1 Lap Down
26493 TEMPLETON, AndrewAlbuquerque, NMKHSnm.com+ 1 Lap Down
28490 PENCE, MattSt. Charles, MOMesa Cycles Racing Team+ 1 Lap Down
29491 FEEHERY, BrandonHomewood, ILSouth Chicago Wheelmen+ 1 Lap Down
30471 CUTRIGHT, ColeKent, WAOh Boy Oberto/Redline+ 1 Lap Down
DNS460 WIECZOREK, TonyTRENTON, MIMesa Cycles Racing Team
DNS464 MILLER, RyanCorvallis, ORFred Meyer/Lakeside
DNS468 QUINLAN, JordanAlbuquerque, NMNob Hill Velo
DNS473 HILLER, DannyBoulder, COCLIF BAR Development Cyclo-Cro
DNS479 BIRMAN, DanBeaverton, ORBeaverton Bicycle Club
DNS481 BATTLES-WOOD, AlexTulsa, OKTeam Power Train
DNS483 WADE, JoshuaWichita, KSMatrix/RBM
DNS484 MCELMEEL, SamIowa City, IAMercy-Specailized
DNS485 REMO, ThomsonFond du Lac, WIBaraboo Sharks
DNS489 GEROW, DanielGrosse Pointe Farms, MINA
DNS2223 KRONENBERG, RafaelAnn Arbor, MICannondale Midwest
DNF486 JAMES, MichaelDelafield, WIBaraboo Sharks
DNF488 EVANS, JustinRaeford, NCC4: Cross Creek Cycling Club
DNF495 SILLS, Bairdlewisville, NCClemmons Bicycle Racing
DNF497 BALSARA, AdrianFort Smith, ARTyson Racing