Did we miss any top contenders? Let us know in the comments who your money is on!
Women: 43 entrants
With Mo Bruno Roy out of the running for the weekend due to work and family in Massachusetts, there is no clear front-runner in the women’s race. That isn’t to say that the headliner race of the day will be dull though: Far from it! With racers coming from all over the country, it’s going to be impossible to call, since most of the women have never raced against one another.
- Selene Yeager: Bicycling Magazine’s Fit Chick, she’s placed well in SSCXWC before, and this is her home turf. With the home court advantage, she’s definitely the one to watch, in our books. While she doesn’t race cyclocross too often, tending more toward MTB and gravel grinders this past year, this author knows from personal experience on the course against her that the crazier it gets, the better she does. And SSCXWC is essentially a guarantee for craziness.
- Nicole Thiemann: Another hometown hero, this Philly native has taken a respite from cyclocross mid-season as a new mom of two adorable babies. The lack of sleep and training may not be great for race legs, but we’ve seen plenty of moms smashing the Elite races in recent years, so we won’t be shocked if she’s stronger than ever.
- Vicki Barclay: The Stan’s NoTubes rider is a force to be reckoned with, and also has the local advantage (don’t let the Scottish accent fool you). And if ever there was a course to run tubeless with a whole lot of sealant, we’re betting it would be this weekend’s, so any women with tubulars better watch out!
- Ellen Sherrill: She almost made the podium at the UCI race in China until a broken derailleur took her out of the running. Considering this is a singlespeed race, maybe she’ll have better luck. She’s also the competitor from the farthest away—a California girl—so she may have the most to prove. She has been out on the East Coast for a couple weeks now, having raced at Baystate last weekend, so jet lag won’t be a factor.
- Katina Walker: a New Yorker with serious singlespeed skills, according to our sources, and the “dark horse” pick for the women’s race.
Men: 200+ entrants
The men’s race is tough as well: with over 200 entrants, we had a hard time narrowing down the options for heavy hitters. But there were a couple of obvious standouts.
- Adam Craig: the 2012 winner of SSCXWC, he’s made noise about skipping the SS race at Nationals this year, so this could be his A race of the season. Can he keep his winning streak going? Will he need to get another tattoo by the end of the weekend? He hasn’t raced too much this season, so we’re not sure where his form is, but even an out-of-shape Adam Craig is a serious force to reckon with.
- Craig Etheridge: Seattle native and singlespeed extraordinaire, Etheridge is our vote for the one guy who could give Craig a real run for his money. He’s hungry enough for the title, and with the whole Raleigh/Hodala crew coming out and supporting him, he’s got the best team around for heckles, hijinks and handups.
- Brian Meyers: Raleigh’s Brian Fornes’ pick as a dark horse contender, Fornes alleges, that Meyers is “one of the only guys in Seattle to give Craig Etheridge a run for his money. He’s actually built for the craziness of this event… He’ll show up at StarCrossed on a 25-year-old Bontrager with flat pedals, and beach cruiser bars and crack the top 10. He’s been in the top5 of SSCXWC almost every time he’s entered it.”
- Aaron Snyder: one of the local names that jumped out at first glance, Snyder was fourth at the Trans-Sylvanian Epic this summer, a feat that requires some serious fitness. He may have the hometown advantage, but the field is so jammed with guys from Philly that in this case, it may not make a difference.
Festivities start tomorrow, so stay tuned to CXM for all the fun from SSCXWC and Junkyard Cross this weekend! And if you can’t wait, check out our retrospective from SSCXWC since its humble beginnings in 2007.
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