The three-day UCI Cincinnati International Cyclocross Festival began this afternoon with the Darkhorse Cyclo-Stampede in Burlington, Kentucky. Jeremy Powers (Cannondale – CyclocrossWorld.com / Leer) took his second UCI win of the season, tackling the bumpy course and beating Jeremiah Bishop (Trek/VW) for the win. The two riders were bunny hopping the barriers after  they gapped the rest of the field. Barry Wicks (Kona), Joachim Parbo (CCV Leopard Cycles) and Jonathan Baker (Vitamin Cottage) rounded out the podium. Our UCI point-chasing Ben Popper (HRS / Rock Lobster) finished the UCI C2 race in 23rd, but that puts him close to the points in Sunday’s C1 that offers points 20 deep.

On the women’s side, Katie Compton (Spike Shooter) beat Georgia Gould (Luna), with Sue Butler (MonavieCannondale.com) following in third.

Full report and results below. Stay tuned for live coverage of the weekend’s UCI races!

J-Pow & Compton Stampede to Wins at Cincinnati Cyclocross Festival Day 1

by Joe Bellante

The course at England-Idlewild park rattled bones and tuned wheels to tacos at the Darkhorse Cyclo-Stampede UCI C-2 in Burlington, KY on Friday, October 12th. The Cincinnati area hasn’t seen a soaking in weeks and the victims of the pounding course lined up for post-race massages at the Wellington Orthopedic tent throughout the day. The 80-degree heat compounded the hurt. For the women, it wasn’t until lap 5 where National Champion Katie Compton (Spike Professional/Primus Mootry) put in a dig near the “horseshoe” chicane and shook Olympian Georgia Gould (Luna) off her wheel and escape to the finish.

In the Men’s Elite race, Powers and Danish National Champion Joachim Parbo put the pedal to the metal at the gun and got the holeshot with Barry Wicks in tow and Vitamin Cottage’s Jonathan Baker not too far off the pace. When Wicks met Powers, it was game-on and Parbo paid the price. That was just the beginning of Powers show of cross-power. On the same lap, Powers punched it opening a gap on Wicks around a tight off camber around a tree, but it was a little too early. Wicks closed it quickly with a “nasty” effort through the start finish which had a domino drop effect on Baker and Trek’s Jeremiah Bishop.

Wicks well of good fortune dried up on lap 3 when he took a bike change. J-Pow smelled blood and drilled it. Now away solo, he extended the lead by hopping a big log barrier to the cheers of the crowd. That move left Bishop, Baker and Wicks struggling to close it down and Powers in the lead for good. With Wicks dangling, it was Bishop who showed his short-track strength with a hard move that boosted him solidly into 2nd.

Powers lead increased to nearly a minute through laps 4-6. At this point, the battle was for 3rd between Wicks and a sweaty-faced Baker. Before the barriers on lap 4, Baker got rattled on a bumpy off camper uphill u-turn and Wicks blasted by to claim 3rd. Parbo was still back and but was now closing in after Baker’s bobble, and eventually made contact. The duo worked together till the last lap where Parbo punched the pedals of his new carbon Leopard Cycles rig just before the barriers. Baker couldn’t answer.

In the end it was all Powers with nearly a minute lead. He and Bishop both celebrated early by hopping the last lap barriers to the hoots of the Cincinnati spectators.

As she watched the start of the 1/2/3 Masters Race, the always cheerful Katie Compton told her new hubby Mark Legg to have fun before his race, but it wasn’t all fun and games in the Women’s elite race. From the gun, Sue Butler (MonavieCannondale.com), Compton and Georgia Gould set a blazing pace through the chicane which put a big gap into a trio of Velo Bella women. With Gould leading the first lap, Compton went down in a wheel eating dip just past the barriers. Wasting no time, Gould upshifted and dug hard. With a show of her strength to come, Compton made the bridge before the end of the lap, and the two were away for good. With Sue Butler on her own in 3rd, that left Devon Haskell of “The Pony Shop” in a Velo Bella sandwich between Barbara Howe and Deidre Winfield. Howe fell off the pace on lap 4 leaving Winfield and Haskell to duel for 4th and 5th.Back at the front, Gould and Compton traded barbs. Gould went first on lap 2, attacking at the same awkward off-camber tree that gave Jeremy Powers the win in the Men’s race. Compton, however, had other plans and quickly shut that down. The two stayed together until Compton showed her technical prowess in the downhill chicane. Gould tried to make up the ground but slightly bobbled on the same off camber u-turn that rattled Jonathan Baker in the Men’s race, and then Compton was gone. Behind, face flushed and sweat dripping from under her helmet, Sue Butler finished for a solid 3rd. Winfield turned on the gas on the last lap dropping Haskell to take 4th.

Full Results: