Bahnson in control © Janet Hill

Bahnson in control © Janet Hill

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The Junior Men 17-18 lined up just as the morning snow turned to a steady rain, helping to create a sloppy, boggy course. With last year’s winner, Cody Kaiser, moving up to the U23’s, the race was open but Jeffrey Bahnson (Van Dessel Factory Team) was a heavy favorite going in. At the gun Gunner Bergey and Sam O’Keefe (C3 Athletes Serving Athletes) charged off the line in white ‘stormtrooper’ skinsuits to take 1-2 in the holeshot.

Their lead was short lived, however, as Zane Godby (Clif Bar Development Cross Team), Bahnson, and Andrew Dillman (Prochain Cycling) joined O’Keefe as Bergey faded slightly. The four races established a strong lead over the remainder of the field as they dropped into the bowl for the first time. Godby put in a hard effort on the backside and looked to be establishing a lead, but was caught by Bahnson and Dillman before the stairs, forming a strong trio.

Bjorn Fox (Clif Bar Development Cross Team) bridged the gap to Bergey and O’Keefe, who had rejoined behind the three leaders, and two groups of three now battled for the order on the podium. The rain, which began to let up, had done it’s work – the course by now was slippery with large sections completely submerged. A large pond had formed at the base of the stairs, covering the first step and causing at least one racer to catch his foot and come crashing into the wet wood.

The trio at the front did not stay together long, as Bahnson put in a hard effort and surged ahead of Godby and Dillman, just as Fox caught up. Fox pushed by and passed Bahnson, bringing Dillman along for the ride and dropping Godby. Bahnson responded, and it looked like the fight among the top three might continue until the line.

Dillman couldn’t quite keep the pace, however, and soon it was Fox leading Bahnson, with riders increasingly distanced behind them. Godby, Bergey and Gorry rounded out the top six.

With two laps to go Bahnson made his move, putting in a huge effort and dropping Fox on the frontside of the course. By the time he dropped into the bowl, he was on his own with a ten second gap on Fox. He never relinquished the lead. Dillman was hanging strong thirty seconds behind Fox. This was the order across the line, with Gorry and Bergey rounding out the top five.

“It feels pretty good, I guess,” said the often reticent Bahnson. “I had a pretty shitty start on the sprint with the mud and water. I was going back and forth a bit with Bjorn, but I attacked on the finishing straight and tried to keep the power down and keep the gap. When I got ten seconds on him, I knew I had it pretty much on the bag.”

Photo Gallery:

Full Results:

Place Points NameCity, StateTimeBibTeam
1150Jeffrey BahnsonNewark, DE0:42:32106Van Dessel Factory Team
2135Bjorn FoxIncline Village, NV43:01:00124Clif Bar Development Cross Team
3120Andrew DillmanFairdale, KY43:50:00115Prochain Cycling
4105Richard Cypress GorryPayson, AZ44:15:00105
590Gunnar BergeyLederach, PA44:25:00118C3-Athletes Serving Athletes
685Samuel O’KeefeBaltimore, MD45:07:00122Charm City Cycling Llc
780Alex HowardMill Valley, CA45:14:00127Above Category Racing
875Tobin OrtenbladSantacruz, CA45:19:00126
970Zane GodbyLouisville, CO45:23:00112Clif Bar Development Cross Team
1065Kolby PrebleForestgrove, OR45:51:00119Clif Bar Development Cross Team
1160Luke HaleyLouisville, KY45:57:00136Red Zone Cycling
1255Jack MacClarenceLoudonville, NY46:14:00103Capital Bicycle Racing Club
1350Brandon DillardCottonwood, CA47:37:00121Owens Healthcare
1445Zachary SemianMertztown, PA47:52:00129Chester County Cycling Foundati
1540Tyler CopleaFountain Hills, AZ48:08:00109
1638Evan RenwickFederal Way, WA48:19:00114Northwest Velo/First Rate Mortg
1736Cole SpragueBend, OR48:19:00125
1834Samuel DobrozsiLoveland, OH48:56:00110Queen City Wheels
1932Zachary BenderGlen Rock, NJ49:04:00132Cycle-Smart Inc.
20ExpAlex DarvilleSanta Barbara, CA49:23:00134Echelon Santa Barbara
2128Adam ArtnerCentral Point, OR50:53:00102
2226Callum ReadAlbuquerque, NM51:13:00116Active Knowledge/Cottonwood Cla
23ExpJohnny MullaneWatsonville, CA51:25:00123Bike Station Aptos
2422Kyle MillerHarleysville, PA52:24:00117
2520Andy SuBend, OR@1Lap135
2619Cary AdamsCorvallis, OR@1Lap120
2718Timothy JaynesGrantspass, OR@1Lap113
2817Joshua KeenerAlbuquerque, NM@1Lap139Active Knowledge/Aims@Unm
2916Kaleb AndersonMeridian, ID@1Lap108Byrds (Boise Young Rider Dev Sq
3015Ayden Hibner-HerefordAlbuquerque, NM@1Lap141Active Knowledge
3114August LehnertBeaufort, SC@1Lap107
3213Mark VanBergenPortland, OR@1Lap138
3312Zachary ColtonBend, OR@1Lap140
3411David YamamotoAuburn, WA@1Lap104Asc Junior Development Associat
DNSExpRyan GeigerFlagstaff, AZDNS111
DNF0J FetteWoodinville, WADNF133Lake Washington Velo/Hagens Ber
DNF0Ben BertigerAltadena, CADNF128Major Motion Cycling Club
DNF0Jeremiah DyerValdese, NCDNF130