From the Mid-Atlantic Scene:
2007 BikeReg.com MABRAcross Series “Ed Sander Memorial Cyclocross” in Buckeystown , MD
October 1, 2006: A record 325 entries piled into the grounds of the Lilypons Water Grounds for round #2 of the 2007 BikeReg.com MABRAcross Series on Sunday. The race’s 34% increase in entries over last year continues the series growth which has averaged approximately 27% per year for the past three year, confirming the series’ reputation as the “Fastest Growing Cycling Series in America”.
Weston Schempf and Betsy Shogren overcame adversity to win the Elite races at the event, which is promoted by the late Ed Sander’s cycling club, National Capitol Cycling Club. The unique course winds around lily ponds and trees of the Sander’s former employer, Lilypons Water Gardens. In many cases, they were ponds and trees that were once tended, and planted, by Sander himself.
In the Women’s race, Jennifer Maxwell (Team Kenda Tire) took the hole-shot with Shogren (FORT Factory Team) in second. The race had taken an unexpected turn by the time the racers came back into sight, however. Shogren, a strong rider who seldom faulters, slipped out of the top five and a long way back from the leaders. The announcers speculated that she must have had a flat tire or some other mechanical problem. After the race though, Shogren said that the only thing flat were her legs. “I finished second in a 50 mile mountain bike race yesterday,” she said. “It was called the Revenge of the Rattlesnake and it took me almost seven hours. That’s what happened to me on the first lap here.” Shogren’s body quickly recovered, however, and on the next lap she showed why she is a three-time Verge MAC cyclocross champion by recovering all of her lost time and joining a lead group that included Maxwell, Heidi Von Teitenberg (C3-Sollay.com) and Cara McCauley (BMW/Bianchi). On the next lap, Shogren asserted herself even more, and only Maxwell was able to go with her. Eventually Shogren just powered away in her typical fashion to win solo by a large margin over Maxwell and Von Teitenberg.
In the featured Ed Sander Memorial for the Elite Men, mountain bike superstar Jeremiah Bishop (TREK-VW) made his first cyclocross start in two years. It was a last minute decision for Bishop, and he hastily assembled his TREK cyclocross bike with the clincher tires he had available so he could compete. 50 starters blasted up the paved prologue following a tribute to Sander, and it immediately became clear that Bishop and 2006 Verge MAC Champion Wes Schempf (C3-Solly.com) were the riders to beat. One week earlier at the opening round of the BikeReg.com MABRAcross Series, Schempf had proven he has the goods to compete against international-class riders when he gave Italian World Cup team members Davide Frattini and Luca Damiani all they could handle at the Charm City Cyclocross. Bishop attacked frequently throughout the race, but was never able to lose Schempf. About midway through the race, Schempf momentarily bobbled over the barriers and Bishop launched a vicious attack. Schempf recovered and caught back up to Bishop, who was impressed. “I thought whoa, if he can recover from THAT…” he said after the race. With two laps to go, Bishop attacked on the flats at the finish line and the spectators watched as he gradually gained ground on Schempf. But as they got to the second announcer’s station at the “party zone”, the air went out of Bishop’s party, and his tire. “There was a big drop-off and I was just sailing it,” said Bishop afterward. “I was way out in front and I flew off it. But when I landed, my tire just went “BROOSH!”. I must have landed on a rock or something.” With less than half-a-lap of mostly downhill until the pits, Bishop tried to limit the damages and was only trailing Schempf by about 20 meters when they got to the pits at the head of the finishing straight. However, Bishop’s last-minute decision to enter the race meant that he had only assembled one bike. A wheel change, no matter how quick, is slower than a bike change and Bishop lost valuable ground in the pits while Schempf nailed the throttle and heard the last lap bell ring. Bishop made a huge effort, but was not able to seriously cut into Schempf’s lead, as Schempf came across the line solo for a hugely popular win.
1) Staff Sergeant Michael Gallagher, racing for the US Armed Forces, finished third in the Elite men’s race after a tough week. Gallagher was transferred to the Letterkenny Army Depot and spent the week driving over 4300 km with his belongings from Portland Oregon to his new post. Gallagher, facing the choice of moving in to his new residence or going racing, arrived at the races with his VW still packed with all his belongings from the cross-continent move.
2) Team C3-Sollay had another great day, with two wins and no fewer than six podium finishers in the various classes.