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WARWICK, RHODE ISLAND — For Luke Keough (Keough Cyclocross), Justin Lindine (Joe’s Garage-BikeReg.com), and the third place rider in the Shimano Series’, Dylan McNicholas (Cannondale-CyclocrossWorld), NBX in Warwick, Rhode Island, was to be a clash of the cyclocross titans of New England. On the line? The $5,000 prize money awarded to the series’ leader at the end of the weekend. The point spread? Going into the weekend, Lindine and Keough were separated by a mere three points, with Keough narrowly holding the lead. That lead increased substantially today.
The day before the race, Cyclocross Magazine caught up with both Luke Keough and Justin Lindine in order to hear their thoughts surrounding the weekend. Keough, who had just gotten in from training when we snagged him, told us “travel back from Europe [where he raced at the Koksijde World Cup last weekend] is always hard on the system. We will see how it goes but I definitely still feel the jet lag and that will be a big factor this weekend.”
Lindine told us, “I’m psyched about it. It’s a different position than I was in last year where I came into it and lost it at this race. Now, the pressure’s on Luke. I like the course, so I’m excited but I don’t feel like I have a ton to lose.”
Justin Lindine has been having the season of his life, snatching up UCI wins like they’re going out of business, and even picking up a C1 win at Providence. He’s talked a lot to us in the past about his struggles with his sprint, something Keough excels in, and the two being neck-and-neck pit two very different racing styles against each other. While Lindine started the season incredibly strong, Luke Keough has been having a fantastic second part of the season, taking both days of Cycle-Smart International nearly a month ago. The two have battled before: both of the racers made it onto the podium for Day Two of Providence, though Lindine took the win while Keough sprinted to a second place finish. And of course, no one can eliminate Dylan McNicholas from the equation entirely: he’s in third place in the series, after a double win at Bay State last weekend, and is still a legitimate contender for the series’ title.
Beyond Keough and Lindine, it was a star-studded field with six-time Swiss National Champion Christian Heule and his Cannondale-cyclocrossworld.com teammate Jamey Driscoll joining the pinnacle of New England racing.
However, it was Luke Keough who took the win, not the international talent. In a sprint finish, Keough passed Heule by a mere wheel length at the line. The two were trailed by surprise rider of the weekend, Jamey Driscoll, followed by Cannondale-CylocrossWorld teammate Dylan McNicholas in fourth. Jerome Townsend (SmartStop-Mock Orange), who led for half of the last lap, took the fifth spot, followed by Lindine.
The racing was furious from the gun, with Dylan McNicholas (cyclocrossworld.com) taking the holeshot and leading the field into the sand. For the first few laps, despite the intense pace, the front group contained twelve racers with leadership switching between McNicholas, Mike Garrigan (Lapierre Canada), Shawn Milne (ECV-Mazda) and the duo from Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com. Notably, Keough, while rarely on the front, was never behind third wheel and was quick to cover all moves.
The clip slowly began to shed racers as Driscoll turned on his big diesel engine. The group was eventually trimmed to seven with Driscoll at the front, followed by Heule, Keough, McNicholas, Lindine and SmartStop-MOB teammates Jerome Townsend and Adam Myerson. While Myerson, McNicholas and Lindine were put into difficulty, each demonstrated his grit and determination by coming back to the lead. A split came with four to go as Heule, Driscoll and Keough went off the front, forcing the group of four to chase.
At two to go, thanks to some chess playing at the front, the gap had come down and it came back together. With seven racers evenly matched, this looked likely to come to a sprint. On the final half of a lap, Heule attacked out of the sandpit and Keough dug incredibly deep to stay with him. McNicholas, slightly gapped, turned himself inside out and made contact with Driscoll behind him.
On the final 180-degree turn onto the pavement, Heule was at the front with Driscoll second and looked ready to pick up his second Shimano Series victory of the season. Keough, dug deep into his reserves and uncorked one of the finest sprints we’ve seen all season and came around Heule for the most prestigious victory of his young career. Heule held on for second ahead of Driscoll. McNicholas came across the line fourth. Townsend picked up fifth ahead of Lindine with Myerson seventh.
With only one day of racing left in the Shimano New England Professional Cyclocross Series, we’re bound to see another race as exciting as today. The series winners will be crowned Sunday.
Luke Keough talks about his finish:
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Place U23 Bib Time First Name Last Name Team City State Elite U23
1 1 5 1:01:49 LUKE KEOUGH CHAMPION SYSTEM P/B KEOUGH CYCLOCROSS SANDWICH MA 40 40
2 44 1:01:50 CHRISTIAN HEULE CANNONDALE P/B CYCLOCROSSWORLD MANCHESTER MA 30 3 1 1:01:51 JAMEY DRISCOLL CANNONDALE CYCLOCROSSWORLD JERICHO VT 20 4 3 1:01:52 DYLAN MCNICHOLAS CYCLOCROSSWORLD.COM STRATHAM NH 15 5 6 1:01:58 JEROME TOWNSEND SMARTSTOP / MOCKORANGEBIKES PB RIDLEY PRINCETON MA 10 6 2 1:02:00 JUSTIN LINDINE BIKEREG.COM / JOE'S GARAGE NEW SALEM MA 8 7 7 1:02:07 ADAM MYERSON TEAM MOUNTAIN KHAKIS PRESENTED BY SMARTSTOP BOSTON MA 6 8 14 1:02:39 SHAWN MILNE ESSEX COUNTY VELO - DRIVEN BY MAZDA BEVERLY` MA 4 9 4 1:02:44 MIKE GARRIGAN LAPIERRE CANADA HILLSBURGH ON 2 10 2 19 1:02:45 JEFFREY BAHNSON VAN DESSEL FACTORY TEAM NEWARK DE 1 30
11 17 1:03:28 DAN CHABANOV RGM WATCHES - RICHARD SACHS BROOKLYN NY 12 10 1:03:29 ALEC DONAHUE J.A.M. FUND / NCC EASTHAMPTON MA 13 11 1:03:29 CHRISTIAN FAVATA RGM WATCHES - RICHARD SACHS KERHONKSON NY 14 13 1:03:29 ANDREW WULFKUHLE C3-ATHLETES SERVING ATHLETES LANCASTER PA 15 3 31 1:03:31 SYNJEN MARROCCO CORNER CYCLE HANSON MA 20
16 18 1:03:33 ANTHONY CLARK J.A.M. FUND / NCC EASTHAMPTON MA 17 9 1:04:47 NICK KEOUGH CHAMPION SYSTEM P/B KEOUGH CYCLOCROSS SANDWICH MA 18 42 1:04:50 DAVID WILCOX CYCLE-SMART JAMAICA PLAIN MA 19 4 20 1:04:50 PATRICK BRADLEY RUTGERS UNIVERSITY | RALEIGH CYCLING RICHWOOD NJ 15
20 37 1:04:51 TOM SAMPSON RHINO PLYMOUTH NH 21 36 1:05:12 COLIN REUTER CROSSRESULTS.COM P/B JRA CYCLES SOMERVILLE MA 22 15 1:05:20 BRYAN FAWLEY ORBEA USA DALLAS TX 23 43 1:05:20 MICHAEL WISSELL B2C2/ BOLOCO ALLSTON MA 24 40 1:05:25 JOSH THORNTON BH BICYCLES/GG EVENTS LLC DADE CITY FL 25 27 1:06:00 EVAN HUFF BIKEREG.COM / JOE'S GARAGE RUSSELL MA 26 35 1:06:01 ALLAN REGO FARM TEAM ELITE TIVERTON RI 27 34 1:06:10 STEPHEN PIERCE EMBROCATION CYCLING JOURNAL CAMBRIDGE MA 28 29 1:06:22 THIERRY LALIBERTE XPREZO - BORSAO CANTON DE SHEFFORD QC 29 30 1:06:27 ANDREW LYSAGHT MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY / FXDD SOMERVILLE MA 30 25 1:06:39 DONNY GREEN CYCLE-SMART PROVIDENCE RI 31 21 1:06:47 JOHN BURNS BURNS RACING YARMOUTH ME 32 5 16 1:07:44 MANNY GOGUEN BIKEREG.COM / JOE'S GARAGE HOPEDALE MA 10
33 23 1:07:49 ALEX COX UVM CYCLING ALUMNI MAFIA (P/B AMERICA) BURLINGTON VT 34 39 1:09:11 ADAM SULLIVAN EMBROCATION CYCLING JOURNAL NORTH KINGSTOWN RI 35 22 1L BEN COLEMAN UVM CYCLING BURLINGTON VT 36 6 38 1L IAN SCHON B2C2/BOLOCO/BACKBAYBICYCLES ALLSTON MA 8
37 26 2L PETER HAGERTY ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY SO. ST. PAUL MN 38 41 2L PIERRE VANDEN BORRE EMBROCATION CYCLING JOURNAL JAMAICA PLAIN MA 39 32 3L JEFF MOOTE CYCLOCROSSRACING.COM NIAGARA FALLS ON DNF 28 JESSE KEOUGH CHAMPION SYSTEM P/B KEOUGH CYCLOCROSS SANDWICH MA DNF 24 CARY FRIDRICH EMBROCATION CYCLING JOURNAL SOMERVILLE MA DNF 12 SHAUN ADAMSON CYCLE-SMART AMHERST MA DNS 8 JOSH DILLON RGM WATCHES - RICHARD SACHS ESSEX JUNCTION VT DNS 33 JOHN PETERSON WWW.BIKEBARNRACING.COM NORTH EASTON MA