“New England Worlds” is hitting Gloucester, Massachusetts this weekend, and Cyclocross Magazine will be there to bring you live coverage of the event both days. Will Trebon or Johnson reign supreme? Will young Anthony be in form after his broken wrist? Will Dombrowski be the new queen? Will the promoters surpass Cross Crusade’s record turnout last weekend? Stay tuned to cxmagazine.com on Saturday and Sunday to find out. Full press release below, by Alan Atwood.
GLOUCESTER, Massachusetts – As the leaves begin to change, it not only signals the change of seasons, but it also marks the pilgrimage to Massachusetts’ Cape Ann area and scenic Gloucester for the Erdinger Grand Prix of Gloucester. 1300 riders are expected to make the trip that is the highlight of most New Englanders cyclo-cross campaigns. Now in its 10th year of existence, this extremely popular New England landmark is continuing its growth with the addition of the North American Cyclo-Cross Trophy (NACT) series to its long-standing affiliation with the Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross Series (NECCS).
The elite men’s race will pit some of the top riders in the country together on the same soil to battle for the lead in both the NACT and NECCS series. Middletown native, current NACT leader, and current national champion Tim Johnson (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) will renew his battle with ’07 national champion Ryan Trebon (Kona) over the NACT lead that heated up in Seattle 3 weeks ago. Both riders are on very familiar ground, and know how to win here and Trebon’s 4 wins and Johnson’s 3 are the most by any elite male in Gloucester history. But expect another native of these parts, Beverly native and 2007 NECCS series winner Jesse Anthony (Jamis), to make a statement as this will be his first campaign of the season after returning from a broken wrist suffered during the summer road campaign. And as the defending champion of Gloucester, he will bear the brunt to defend his title.
All this attention to the “big 3″ will suit current NECCS leader Jamey Driscoll (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) just fine, as he will quietly compete with the big boys and look to retain his NECCS lead over the weekend. Other riders to watch for will be mid-Atlantic pro Davide Frattini (Colavita/Sutter Home p/b Cooking Light), California veteran Andy Jacques-Maynes (Specialized/KMC p/b Cal Giant), Matt White (BikeReg.com/Joe’s Garage), Dan Timmerman (Team RACE Pro), who opened some eyes 2 weeks ago in Vermont by almost winning Sunday’s race after a long solo break, and NECCS U23 leader Will Dugan (Richard Sachs/RGM Watches/Boathouse Inc) will look to hold onto his series lead over Nick Keough (Jittery Joe’s/Sonic).
On the women’s side, with the co-NACT leaders not expected to compete, it will be a dash to decide who will take over the series lead after this weekend. NECCS leader and 2-time under 23 national champion Amy Dombroski (Velo Bella-Kona) has a shot of grabbing 2 jerseys this weekend, as she is coming off of 2 masterful wins in Vermont and a 3rd in Seattle. But Dombroski will be facing a 2-pronged attack, as western competitors Sarah Kerlin (HRS/Rock Lobster), teammate Kathy Sherwin, and Josie Jacques-Maynes (Specialized/KMC p/b Cal Giant) will be seeing a NACT lead in their sights, while New Englanders Rebecca Wellons (Ridley) and Maureen Bruno-Roy (MM Racing p/b Seven Cycles) will be hunting down the NECCS lead. Other riders with a shot at the podium will be Anna Milkowski (Velo Bela/Kona), Sally Annis (NEBC/CycleLoft/Devonshire Dental), teammate Cris Rothfuss, and Amy Wallace (Richard Sachs/RGM Watches/Boathouse Inc)
The elite masters will look to continue their fierce battle waged up in Vermont, with Corner Cycles riders Jonny Bold and Kevin Hines in the NECCS series leads in the 35+ and 45+ respectively. But while Hines is expected to continue his dominance of the 45+, Bold will have his hands full as Roger Aspholm (Westwood Velo) and Mark McCormack (Team FUJI) are breathing down his neck for the series lead. With McCormack and Aspholm finishing ahead of Bold on Sunday in Vermont, the 35+ lead will be up for grabs in a very exciting and challenging 2 days of racing.
Current junior national champion Luke Keough (CLNoonan/Coast-to-Coast/KAM) cruised to 2 wins in Vermont and looks to do the same this weekend over the likes of Manny Goguen (Minuteman Road Club), Conor O’Brien (Ride with Rendell), Karl Hoppner, and teammates Colin Huston and brother Jesse Keough.
The 2008 Verge New England Championship Cyclo-Cross Series is brought to you by Verge Sport, makers of fine cycling clothing and products since 1993; by Cycle-Smart, purveyors of personalized cycling coaching and solutions for riders across the country; by Cycle-Ops, makers of high-tech accessories to meet any indoor training plans; by Echappe, rent-to-own the latest in race wheels – try before you buy at Echappe; by BikeReg.com, the official online registration service of the NECCS; and by Paul Weiss Photo/Video, the official photographer of the NECCS. You can visit these sponsors and get more information on the series by going to the web at http://www.necyclocross.com.