The temperatures dropped drastically right before the start of the women’s 45-49 and 50-54 races at Valmont Bike Park in Boulder, Colorado today. Rather than mud melting through the snow, it seemed to tack up slightly, creating a faster, tougher course for the women.
Masters Women 45-49
Tracy Yates (Tough Girl Cycling) took the holeshot, though it wasn’t long before Karen Hogan (Team Kappius) took over the lead, along with fellow Boulder native Margell Abel (Natural Grocers Cycling Team).
“That off-camber section and the run? That’s anaerobic hell!” Abel laughed at the finish line.
“I was hoping to be one of the top contenders,” Hogan told us. “I loved the course. So technical. But that suits me a little better. I wanted to be alone. That way you didn’t have to worry about other people making mistakes.”
The two then created a large gap on the rest of the field almost immediately, with Yates still chasing with Kristin Lucido (Mirage) chasing behind them. The course continued to tack up and the racers who had elected to race in shorts were surely cursing their decision as the temperatures steadily dropped.
With one to go, Hogan grinned going through the finish stretch, with a full 10 seconds gap to second place, and almost a minute between Abel in second and Yates in third.
Masters Women 50-54
The 50-54 race was the bigger story of the day, with race leader and former pro mountain biker Ann Trombley taking the holeshot. She kept the lead, with the exception of a short stint in the first lap where someone passed her, and “I realized I needed to do something about it.”
And so she did, winding her way through the 45-49 group that had started a minute before her race, working her way into fifth, and when that wasn’t enough, into third position in 45-49 and a minute ahead of second place in the 50-54 by the end of the race.
Behind her, Leean Storino (Celo Pacific) took second while Boulder local Michele Bliss (Team Small Batch) took third.
This will be Trombley’s first cyclocross National title, and her last. “I did this because it’s local and it was fun,” she says, but added, “When I was racing, you didn’t do two seasons, you just raced ’cross for fun if you were a mountain biker.”
Results below gallery.
Locals Hogan and Trombley Top Masters Women 45-49 and 50-54 Podiums – Gallery
2014 USA Cyclocross National Championships Women 45-49
2014 USA Cyclocross National Championships Women 50-54
For all the best Cyclocross Nationals 2014 coverage, including bike profiles, race reports, results and video interviews, check out our 2014 Cyclocross National Championship Page here.