NORTHAMPTON, MASSACHUSETTS — To no one’s surprise, Katerina Nash (Luna) took the victory at Cycle-Smart International Day One. She was followed by Laura Van Gilder (Mellow Mushroom) and Sally Annis (CrossResults.com). Ladies First’s Andrea Smith and Crystal Anthony took fourth and fifth.
Nash started the day by running a clinic for the Boston Luna Chix, both before and after her own race. All day, she could be seen around the course with a large group of women, but she still managed to ride seemingly easily to victory during the elite race.
While Nash took an early lead, there was a fight going on for second place behind her as Van Gilder, Annis and Smith duked it out on course. “We knew it was in all of our best interest to work together to bring Nash back,” said Laura Van Gilder after the race, “Sally was going really, really well and Smith and I were both working hard.”
However, Van Gilder strategized throughout the race, waiting for the right moment to attack the other two. She made the attack on the ride/run-up (riding, obviously) on the final lap. Behind her, Smith fumbled on the ride-up, taking herself and Annis down, leaving Van Gilder a clear-cut opportunity to break away. Another small fumble on the barriers by Smith gave Annis the edge, and she cruised into the finish seconds behind Van Gilder, who had been slowed down by a flat by the barriers and had to ride it to the pit.