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Webber celebrating his win. © Steve Anderson

Webber celebrating his win. © Steve Anderson

The temperatures were higher, the sun was sunnier, and the mood of the crowd was even cheerier than it had been for the past three days of racing at Valmont Bike Park. And for good reason—their hometown hero, the man who designed the Nationals course, Pete Webber, was leading the Men’s 40-44 race, the largest race thus far. “It was a dry and fast course this morning, and wind was a factor,” Webber said.

Webber led practically from the gun, which was the idea all along. He said, post-race, “The goal was to get out front right away and smash it, and the race went according to plan.” However, it was his Boulder Cycle Sport teammate Brandon Dwight who took the initial lead, though an early crash took him out of the top spot.

“On the very first climb, it was Pete and Mark Savery and myself, and this guy came right up the middle in the icy rut and just took me out. It was an unsafe pass and he completely took me out,” Dwight explained.

The Men's 40-44 race was the biggest race so far with 130 starters. © Steve Anderson

The Men’s 40-44 race was the biggest race so far with 130 starters. © Steve Anderson

The lead group consisted of Webber, Dwight, Mark Savery (Trek Cyclocross Collective), Andrew Messer (Cyclocrossworld), and Brian Finnerty (Cal-Giant)

Within a lap, Webber was sitting at the front, trading spots with Savery, while Finnerty was making a bid for the top spot. Laps times were clocking in at roughly eight minutes, making them the fastest of the week.

However, the pace was tough on Savery, who’s from Nebraska. “The altitude was getting to me,” he explained. “I knew I had to keep Pete close early on, because he goes hard at the beginning. Those first two laps were just too much, it overcooked me a little bit.”

Webber and Savery began to battle each other, separating from the rest of the lead group as the racers spread out across the course. Behind them, Edwin Bull (Van Dessel Factory Team) worked his way through the crowd and into the lead group with Messer and Colby Pearce (Trek), along with Paul Bonds (Oklahoma City Velo Club).

By the third lap, the altitude was catching up with Savery, and Webber was starting to create a small gap heading into the lap. Behind the two, Messer, Bull and Pearce were in a group together, with Dwight trying to catch back on. “I wanted to win,” Dwight later admitted.

Between Dwight and Pearce, as Webber’s and Savery’s respective teammates, did team tactics come into play? “I don’t think there were any tactics going on back there. I think everyone was just full gas the whole day.”

Pearce began to fade, and Messer was able to pull away as Dwight caught up to him, and the two began to chase down Savery, who was fading farther back from Webber. A bobble at the off-camber after the stairs put Savery even more in the red, and with two laps to go, Webber’s lead had extended to 30 seconds. Back from his crash, Dwight was pulling away from Messer and Bull for the third podium spot.

Pete Webber taking the men's 40-44 win. © Steve Anderson

Pete Webber taking the men’s 40-44 win. © Steve Anderson

In the meantime, Webber was weaving around the course to the roar of fans, even cracking a smile on the off-camber.
He sailed into the finish with plenty of time to celebrate the win, and 30 seconds later, Savery rolled in, happy with second, while Dwight took third spot.

 Pete Webber Solos to 40-44 Win at the 2014 National Cyclocross Championships – Gallery by Mike Albright

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Masters Men 40-44 Race Results at 2014 USA Cycling National Championship of Cyclocross

PlaceBibLastFirstTeam
1389WEBBERPeterBoulder Cycle Sport
2371SAVERYMarkMidwest Cycling Community NE
3298DWIGHTBrandonBoulder Cycle Sport
4363PEARCEColby
5281BULLEdwinVan Dessel Factory Team
6284CLARKJ
7268ANDERSONEric
8351MESSERAndrewCyclocrossworld
9296DELAPLANERossbrookfield Homes Racing
10393WORKAlex
11313GRIFFINRussellCycleton
12319HARSHMANShawnBoulder Cycle Sport
13321HAUSDOERFFERWilliam ""Tyson""Team Wisconsin
14320HARTMANJasonGroove Subaru Excel Sports
15292DAVIESMattBoulder Cycle Sport
16339MARINIGreg
17353MITCHELLShawnTeam Rhino Rush
18370SAGERJasonAngry Catfish
19378SMITHShaddKCCX Fuji Elite Cyclocross Team
20276BONDSPaulOklahoma City Velo Club
21318HARRISClayTeam Kappius
22344MCFARLINGRyanGates Carbon Drive
23345MCGOVERNChristopherCalNorte VC Switchbacks
24282CARROLLMichaelDurango Wheel Club
25279BRANDTChrisMTB PRO Team: Honey Stinger/Bon
26395YOUNGBretnycross.com
27330KELLERGregoryBoulder Cycle Sport
28396HLUDZINSKIBrianBoulder Cycle Sport
29285COLNJonathanCycleton
30278BROCKETJPEthos Racing
31272BATEYRobertFeedback Sports Racing
32301FAULKNERCraigCrossniacs
33335LACKEYMichaelBirmingham Velo
34277BOUPLONAaronBoulder Running Company Cycling
35308GALLEGOSPatrick8 Sixteen Racing
36328JOHNSONMenkoPeninsula Velo Cycling Club
37350MERRILLCharlie
38305FLORESAnastasio
39289COYLECharlesGroove Subaru Excel Sports
40333KRIPKEJamie
41355MOOREIanSquadra Di Servitori
42267ALEGRANTIJon
43388WAMSLEYRockHub Bicycle Company
44315HAIDETSean
45352MICHAUDAndre-PaulDurango Wheel Club
46366RAPINZPaulBoulder Running Company Cycling
47369RUSSELLJason
48361PANKONINWilliamxXx Racing
49338MARCUSNoahGreenstreet Velo Club
50359NELSONKevinRoosters/Bikers Edge-UT
51348MELLISHDanielTeam Kappius
52293DAVISVincentOld School Racing
53394WYSZYNSKIDaniel
54375SCHRADDanStudio Velo
55280BRYANJoeBoulder Cycle Sport
56271BALDESAREJamesWAS Labs Cycling
57312GRACEBryan
58311GOUGHMattPeloton-Specialized Cycling Tea
59273BERGMANSheaWilderness Sports
60334KROMBEINBrianGroove Subaru Excel Sports
61307FRYEvan
62331KILCOYNEJamieTeam Kappius
63299FARRELLDanBoulder Cycle Sport
64376SCOTTJamesGroove Subaru Excel Sports
65384THOMASBradReal D-Amgen Masters Cycling
66332KOPACKJerryFeedback Sports Racing
67302FENTRESSBradUSC Cycling Team
68314GROVESKirkFoxtrot Racing
69357MOROZOWICHStevenDurango Wheel Club
70303FERGUSONDougCycleton
71349MENDIGOCHEAMatias8th Wonder Cycling
72385VERNERRudyRitte Van Vlaanderen
73294DEANCharley
74270AVERILLDavidFort Collins Cycling Team
75364PETERSONScottTeam Small Batch
76275BIGGSJason
77374SCHEELJimKryki Sports
78381STABYBrianCX Nation
79382SUMNERJasonUSC Cycling Team
80300FARRELLDaveWilderness Sports
81295DEIBERTJohnHigh Peaks Masters
82337MALONESeanFrites En Mayo Velo Club
83347MELCHIONDASeanDivine Electric Norcal
84306FRANCEBrianOld School Racing
85358MOUTSOPOULOSBasilHup United
86379SMITHWesley
87372SCHAFERSteveVillage-Verdigris Cycling
88356MORANHughAsheville Bicycle Racing Club
89373SCHAUBPeterCROSS PROPZ RACING
90390WEIRAndrewLiVe Well p/b Bountiful Bicycle
91322HEINZELMANKeith20/20 Fuel
92346MCREYNOLDSDylanCyclesFANATICRacing.com
93265CARLSONMatt
94343MCCALLBrian
95340MARSHALLPeterDurango Wheel Club
96367RIOSRodneyBike Barn (Texas)
97290CURRYJayComprehensive Racing/Salem Cycl
98362PASKINSAndySRAM Factory
99354MOOREBrianOld School Racing
100402DEVOEAdamFrites En Mayo Velo Club
101383TEPLITZKYJoshCycleton
102291CURTINDanielBicycle Sport Shop Club
103391WEYMANRobertTeam Squareone
104288COWARTChrisPeninsula Velo Cycling Club
105287COOPERDanielComprehensive Racing/Salem Cycl
106377SMITHDavidHub Bicycle Company
107310GEORGECharlyCycling Northwest
108342MAWKurtComprehensive Racing/Salem Cycl
109368ROGERSNealUSC Cycling Team
110365PETERSONDavidNorthStar Development
111266ADAMSMichaelWAS Labs Cycling
112397HOCKENBERRYToddOld School Racing
113309GARRETTMichaelMassachusetts Institute of Tech
114317HARDINGCraigTeam Yacht Club
DNF304FINNERTYBrianCalifornia Giant Cycling
DNF325HOLICKYGrantEvol Elite Racing
DNF336LIFGRENJeffreyWilderness Sports
DNF283CASALICarlosGroove Subaru Excel Sports

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.