Rebecca Much Dominates, McLaughlin Beats Popper in Chicago
McLaughlin and Much kick up the sand to victory in Chicago
By Imelda March
Temperatures finally hit the “crispy side” of things in Chicago and it actually felt like ‘cross weather had finally arrived. Crossers came out fresh and ready to tackle the newly redesigned Carpenter Park course. Jeff Provisor, owner of Main Street Bicycles and race director added two fast paved sections with a u-turn and multiple twisty areas that kept racers with their thinking helmets on alert.
This year Provisor combined his efforts with Village of Carpentersville and created the OktoberCross Festival. Provisor said that, “he had approached the Village of Carpentersville for approval for the ‘cross race at Carpenter Park with the addition of hosting a Beer Garden.” He explains that “I have been jealous of the race vibe they have on the coasts and Europe, and dreamed of one day making our ‘cross race more of big community event. As it turned out, the village was looking to expand its own Fall Festival and asked if we could combine events to create what is now called OktoberCross.”
The battle of the day was between Scott McLaughlin (Sram Factory Team) and CXM Columnist Ben Popper (HRS Rock Lobster). The two went head-to-head on this flat and somewhat technical course. In the end, Scott McLaughlin (Sram Factory Team) took advantage of a Popper flat tire and spare bike problem to win the race. Popper chased hard after his problems and finished five seconds in arrears to take 2nd. Brian Conant (Pony Shop) finished in 3rd, Luca Lenzi (Pony Shop) in 4th with Kevin Klug (Killjoy) rounding out the podium.
Rebecca Much (XXX Racing/AthletiCo), the current United States U23 TT Champion, has been coming out to frolic while she prepares for her road campaign. She took the hole shot, stepped on the gas and kept it in high cruise control to the end. Seconds behind and chasing in 2nd place was Debbie Dust (Verdigris Custom Homes) with her lethal teammate June Upshaw in 3rd place, followed by Holly Klug (Killjoy) in 4th place and Leah Sanda (Flatlandia) in 5th to round out the podium.
Racing continues with the Chicago Cyclocross Cup Race #5 on Sunday, October 26 in Bartlett, Illinois. Further information about the series can be found by visiting www.chicrosscup.com