Women’s Title Up for Grabs: Handicapping the Clif Bar CrossVegas Field
All bets will be off when the elite field of women’s cyclocrossers lines up for the crankbrothers ladylucx race at Clif Bar CrossVegas in Las Vegas, Nevada on Wednesday September 19. With no returning winner on the start line, bragging rights for the champion of the biggest cross race outside of Europe are up for grabs.
2010 and 2011 CrossVegas winner Katerina Nash of the LUNA Chix Team plans to take a short break before starting her 2012-2013 cross season. Without a doubt, Nash has earned a break after a season that extended from winter cyclocross through spring and summer mountain bike racing in preparation for the Olympic Games in London.
It’s time to handicap the field of the crankbrothers ladylucx starting with the riders from U.S.
- Georgia Gould, Olympic Bronze Medalist in mountain bike in London.
- Amy Dombroski, 2nd place in 2011 at CrossVegas.
- Kelli Emmett, 3rd place in 2012 at CrossVegas.
- Lea Davison, 11th place in mountain bike in London.
- Chloe Woodruff, multiple U.S. national championships.
- Nicole Duke, highest placed U.S ride in last year’s world championships.
- Meredith Miller, 4th place in 2011 at CrossVegas.
- Teal Stetson-Lee, top 10 in 2011 at CrossVegas.
Notable Foreign Riders
- Julie Krasniak, Caroline Mani and Christel Bruneau of France are all competing for different sponsors.
- Mical Dyck of Canada
- Gabby Day of Great Britain
- Sanne van Paassen of The Netherlands
- Sophie de Boer of Belgium
- Sabine Scweitzer of Germany
In the “races within the race,” the special lap prizes designed to keep the action hot and heavy from beginning to end, here are a few riders to watch.
New for 2012 is the Milagro Tequila Whole Shot Award on the opening lap. This prize is a natural for the rider who starts fast and wants to grab early glory. Chief among the riders fitting that description are Caroline Mani and Nicole Duke, both riding for the new Raleigh-Clement team. These two have shown in the past their prowess as queens of the hole shot.
The 2nd Lap Sprint Award guarantees the riders don’t rest in the early laps of the race. This is a natural for a veteran sprinter like Sanne van Paassen of Giant-Rabobank or Sophie De Boer of Telnet-Fidea.
The WickWerks Fast Lap Award recognizes the fastest lap time by any rider during the race. The 2011 winner, Amy Dombroski, clocked the speediest lap in pursuit of winner Nash and was rewarded with the cash prize. The WickWerks Fast Lap Award can be the result of a breakaway or chasing after a fall or mechanical problem. Often the rider is unaware they’re turning the fastest lap; but the fans can sure tell.
Next week, look for our handicap report of the Men’s field.