by Chris Fisher

From all accounts, last weekend’s Green Acres Cross lived up to its hype as the MN race that Midwesterners need try. The most anticipated race on the MN cyclocross calendar is drawing impressive fields, ever widening its reach beyond just local racers.

Eric Thompson (HED p/b Molten Speed Wax) leading the elite men from the start. © Todd Fawcett

Eric Thompson (HED p/b Molten Speed Wax) leading the elite men from the start. © Todd Fawcett

Threatening rain all week, Saturday’s weather turned out to be rather pleasant, if decidedly uncrossy. Even the strong winds of Friday night diminished to a light breeze. By midday, the course was already getting rave reviews including the newest feature: a 25′ vertical run-up, which looked more like a wall of sand than a CX course feature.

Elite men took to the line just after noon, and early on the lead group of 7 traded pulls for the first several laps. Eric Thompson (HED p/b Molten Speed Wax) broke away, followed closely by Mark Savery (Trek Cyclocross Collective). Thompson would eventually shake loose of Savery, going on to win. Savery faded to third after battling Thompson for 7 laps, finishing behind Dominic Talerico (Foundry).

The Saturday women’s race was over shortly after it began. 2016 singlespeed national champion Nicole Mertz (NoCoast Racing powered by Intelligentsia) took the Search and State sponsored holeshot prime, and never looked back. She would win by 1:30 over Megan Barr (Angry Catfish), with Corey Coogan Cisek (The Fix Studio) rounding out the podium.

Sunday brought a new twist, with racers climbing the switchback decent from Saturday’s course, as well as adding in wooded technical sections. With Thompson taking a rest day to ready himself for a Belgian campaign later in the month, the men’s field was wide open. Early on Foundry riders Peter Olejniczak and Talerico pushed the pace up the demanding climb. The lead group stayed together much longer than Saturday, slowly whittling away riders lap by lap. Talerico finally made a move that Charlie Simacek (All-City) and Savery, the last two remaining, were unable to respond to. That move would stick, earning Talerico the top spot on the podium.

Nicole Mertz (NoCoast Racing powered by Intelligentsia) descending into the switchbacks. © Todd Fawcett

Nicole Mertz (NoCoast Racing powered by Intelligentsia) descending into the switchbacks. © Todd Fawcett

The women’s field was equally open, this time due to a first-lap mechanical for Mertz. Barr capitalized, and extended her lead over the other elite women. With a new bike, Mertz powered back into contention, closing in lap after lap. Meanwhile, Barr rode a consistent race off the front, turning quicker lap times than the rest of her competitors, and ended her day in first. Mertz credited a substantial cheering section for an added boost. “People seem to stay well after their own races to cheer on other fields, which I think is also a testament to the MN CX scene. I really noticed this on Sunday, after a mechanical on lap 1 sent me far off the back of the field. But thanks to all of the cheers and heckles, I was able to make it back into the top 3 before a poorly timed front flat took me out of the race for good.”

Green Acres showed it’s not just the quality racing that brings the crowds. Free food and beverages on both days, in addition to the much anticipated prize raffle kept most on hand until late in the day. With a HED fatbike wheelset and a Shimano carbon CX wheelset as the grand prizes, you’d have been silly not to stick around. Mertz, busy with a national calendar of racing, echoed these sentiments. “The whole event was run really well. The food choices, craft beer selections, announcing, and raffle always make it a must on my schedule”. Before saddling up for the long drive back to Nebraska, Savery added “After racing Green Acres in 2015 for the first time I knew I had to come back. The 2016 course updates did not disappoint. NOW Bikes and Synergy Cycling have created a UCI-worthy course and venue. I’m already looking forward to coming back in 2017.”

Photos by Todd Fawcett –


Green Acres Premium Cross Results

Elite Men (Day 1)
1 Eric Thompson (HED p/b Molten Speed Wax)
2 Dominic Talerico (Foundry)
3 Mark Savery (Trek Cyclocross Collective).

Elite Women (Day 1)
1 Nicole Mertz (NoCoast Racing powered by Intelligentsia)
2 Megan Barr (Angry Catfish)
3 Corey Coogan Cisek (The Fix Studio)

Elite Men (Day 2)
1 Dominic Talerico (Foundry)
2 Charlie Simacek (All-City)
3 Mark Savery (Trek Cyclocross Collective)

Elite Women (Day 2)
1 Megan Barr (Angry Catfish),
2 Robin Williams (Iowa City Cycling Club)
3 Stacy Kalemkiarian (The Fix Studio)

2016 Green Acres Premium Cyclocross Results Day 1 - Elite Men

PlacePointsNameCity, StateTimeTeam
1102.63Eric ThompsonShoreview, MN57:44.0Hed P/b Molten Speed Wax
2107.89Dominic TalericoSaint Paul, MN58:06.2Angry Catfish
3113.14Mark SaveryOmaha, NE58:13.5Trek Cyclocross Collective
4118.4Charles SimacekMinneapolis, MN58:32.7All-City
5123.66Nicholas LemkeMinneapolis, MN59:04.2
6128.91Peter OlejniczakRoseville, MN59:11.5Revolution Cycle & Ski
7134.17Craig FaulknerMendota Heights, MN59:41.0County Cycles Masters Cx P/b Trek
8139.42Olivier VramboutBayport, MN59:46.2Waffle Power Cycling Club
9144.68Brian BaumhoverIowa City, IA59:51.1Iowa City Cycling Club
10149.94Sam BerklandMinneapolis, MN00:01.6The Hub Cycling Team
11155.19Jesse RientsShakopee, MN00:10.5Kuhl
12160.45Brent PrenzlowCarlsbad, CA00:24.2Celo Pacific / Focus
13165.71Jameson RibbensMinneapolis, MN00:24.6Revolution Cycle & Ski
14170.96Tyler ReynoldsPella, IA01:00.2Trek Cyclocross Collective
15176.22Marcus BushMinneapoilis, MN01:10.6
16181.47Christian SundquistLittle Canada01:50.7The Hub Cycling Team
17186.73Andrew ThompsonMinneapolis, MN02:03.3Birchwood/gis
18191.99Mitch NordahlAnoka, MN02:13.0Milltown / Trek Cycling Team
19197.24Cole LimpachOmaha, NE02:21.3Harvest Racing
20202.5Matthew RileyWaterloo, WI02:56.5Team Wisconsin
21207.76Samuel WestlakeFarmington03:08.5Minnesota Junior Cycling Inc.
22213.01John Heinlein IIIStillwater03:39.7
23218.27Keir StieglerSaint Louis Park, MN03:49.8Top Natchez Racing
24223.52Chase WarkZimmerman, MN04:59.7Birchwood/gis
25228.78Benjamin AndersonIowa City, IA05:02.8Iowa City Cycling Club
26234.04Matt LeizingerRichfield, MN05:40.0All-City
27239.29Fred MillsSaint Louis Park, MN57:45.9Lgr P/b Tonka Cycle & Ski
28244.55Luke SkovLe Mars, IA58:01.9Central Junior Cycling Devo
29249.81Peter OienSiouxfalls, SD58:18.2Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
30255.06Samuel BramelMinneapolis, MN59:02.5
31260.32Patrick LemieuxSaint Paul, MN59:10.5Donkey Label
32265.57Jesse BaderSioux Falls59:16.0Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
33270.83Brian KozickiSaint Louis Park, MN59:16.1Top Natchez Racing
34276.09Devin ObrienMinneapolis, MN00:07.6
35281.34Tristin BentzlerChippewa Falls, WI00:57.9Donkey Label
36286.6Drew WilsonRochester, MN01:00.9Milltown / Trek Cycling Team
37291.86GroskreutzMinneapolis, MN01:23.6All-City
38297.11Dave FettersMinneapolis, MN01:32.7Twin Six
39302.37Paul AndersonMinneapolis, MN02:00.8
40307.62Zachary DolinajMinneapolis02:24.0
41312.88Gordon HillequeEdina, MN02:32.2Freewheel Bike
42318.14Ken EarleyMinneapolis, MN03:32.1The Hub Cycling Team
43323.39Mike LadendorfFarmington, MN04:14.8
44328.65Jason KozickiGreen Bay, WI04:25.0Colavita Racing Inc.
45333.91Matthew PriorPlymouth, MN58:05.3Birchwood/gis
46339.16Isaac YoungMinneapolis, MN02:14.7All-City
DNFJeff KluckSioux Falls, SD45:20.1Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
DNFChris FischerSaint Paul, MN32:02.5Synergy
DNFAndrew TurnerCottage Grove, MN11:47.3Synergy
DNFBrandon KrawczykSaint Paul, MNRevolution Cycle & Ski
DNFColin CatlinArden Hills, MN39:56.6Northstar Development
DNFDaniel SvedbergWoodbury, MN20:48.4Northstar Development
DNFJackson SundeVermillion, SD12:18.1Central Junior Cycling Devo
DNFMark LavinSioux Falls, SD04:31.9Queen City Cycling/sanford Health

2016 Green Acres Premium Cyclocross Results Day 1 - Elite Women

PlacePointsNameCity, StateTimeTeam
1102.53Nicole MertzMinneapolis42:05.2Nocoast Racing Powered By Intelligentsia
2111.55Megan BarrMinneapolis, MN42:35.4Angry Catfish
3120.57Corey Coogan CisekMinneapolis, MN43:22.2The Fix Studio
4129.59Stacy KalemkiarianStillwater43:24.2The Fix Studio
5138.61Robin WilliamsMinneapolis , MN44:07.5Iowa City Cycling Club
6147.63Jennifer NowlinPlymouth, MN44:13.6The Fix Studio
7156.65Molly Clark-OienSioux Falls, SD44:20.4Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
8165.67Emily NordahlRochester, MN44:39.8North Dakota State University
9174.69Carol SeippEagan, MN44:50.4
10183.71Gwen JorgensenSt Paul, MN44:54.2Donkey Label
11192.73Rebecca IrelandMinneapolis, MN45:19.9The Fix Studio
12201.76Diedre RibbensMinneapolis, MN45:27.9Orion Racing
13210.78Jenna WestlakeFarmington, MN46:27.2Minnesota Junior Cycling Inc.
14219.8Katie ThompsonMinneapolis, MN48:02.2The Fix Studio
15228.82April BeardMadison, WI48:36.5Trek Midwest Team
16237.84Chelsea StrateRichfield, MN49:17.9All-City
17246.86Josephine BrindaMinneapolis, MN49:25.6The Fix Studio
18255.88Carly ThomsenOmaha, NE49:47.1Midwest Cycling Trek Store/women's Cycli
19264.9Alexandra MagnerMinneapolis, MN50:34.8All-City
20273.92Izzy KrompegelSt. Paul51:16.8
21282.94Ingrid AndersonIowa City, IA42:22.5Iowa City Cycling Club
22291.96Amy HanenburgMinneapolis, MN43:49.8The Fix Studio
DNFLilly FergusonLe Mars, IA16:32.6Central Junior Cycling Devo
DNFMeredith RambowSaint Paul, MNSynergy

2016 Green Acres Premium Cyclocross Results Day 2 - Elite Men

PlacePointsNameCity, StateTimeTeam
1104.42Dominic TalericoSaint Paul, MN58:33.3Angry Catfish
2110.61Charles SimacekMinneapolis, MN58:49.0All-City
3116.8Mark SaveryOmaha, NE59:08.7Trek Cyclocross Collective
4122.99Nicholas LemkeMinneapolis, MN59:29.1
5129.18Peter OlejniczakRoseville, MN59:35.2Revolution Cycle & Ski
6135.37Craig FaulknerMendota Heights, MN00:12.5County Cycles Masters Cx P/b Trek
7141.56Jesse RientsShakopee, MN00:22.7Kuhl
8147.75Olivier VramboutBayport, MN00:35.6Waffle Power Cycling Club
9153.94Brent PrenzlowCarlsbad, CA00:45.8Celo Pacific / Focus
10160.13Sam BerklandMinneapolis, MN00:54.5The Hub Cycling Team
11166.32Jameson RibbensMinneapolis, MN01:04.5Revolution Cycle & Ski
12172.51Douglas SwansonMinnetonka, MN01:33.5Hollywood Cycles
13178.7Andrew ThompsonMinneapolis, MN01:54.4Birchwood/gis
14184.89Tyler ReynoldsPella, IA02:03.7Trek Cyclocross Collective
15191.08Brendan BellewNew Prague, MN02:51.1
16197.27Patrick LemieuxSaint Paul, MN03:05.2Donkey Label
17203.46Matthew AllenMinneapolis, MN03:13.3Lgr P/b Tonka Cycle & Ski
18209.65Bob GertenInver Grove Heights, MN03:42.2Angry Catfish
19215.84Benjamin AndersonIowa City, IA03:51.5Iowa City Cycling Club
20222.03Logan GraceMinneapolis, MN04:34.2Loon State Cyclists
21228.22Matthew RileyWaterloo, WI04:44.0Team Wisconsin
22234.41Keir StieglerSaint Louis Park, MN04:55.5Top Natchez Racing
23240.6Chase WarkZimmerman, MN05:41.4Birchwood/gis
24Josey Weins05:51.6
25252.98Luke SkovLe Mars, IA05:59.5Central Junior Cycling Devo
26259.17Jesse BaderSioux Falls07:20.3Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
27265.36Dave FettersMinneapolis, MN58:33.6Twin Six
28271.55Mitch NordahlAnoka, MN58:34.1Milltown / Trek Cycling Team
29277.74Samuel BramelMinneapolis, MN58:45.7
30283.93Paul KrumrichMinneapolis, MN59:21.8Donkey Label
31290.12Devin ObrienMinneapolis, MN59:25.6
32296.31Brian KozickiSaint Louis Park, MN00:10.3Top Natchez Racing
33302.5Benjamin HovlandMinneapolis, MN00:11.2Second Chance Racing P/b Zubaz
34308.69Jason KozickiGreen Bay, WI01:07.9Colavita Racing Inc.
35314.88Jon GilesSioux Falls01:41.6Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
36321.07Cole LimpachOmaha, NE02:10.8Harvest Racing
37327.26Jason GoldbergSaint Paul, MN02:25.8Gpcx On The Dl
38333.46Gordon HillequeEdina, MN02:38.1Freewheel Bike
DNFOwen ThoeleMinneapolis, MN46:37.7Angry Catfish
DNFBrian BaumhoverIowa City, IA44:54.8Iowa City Cycling Club
DNFAdam GorskiMinneapolis, MN29:50.4The Fix Studio
DNFBrandon KrawczykSaint Paul, MN30:05.4Revolution Cycle & Ski
DNFChristian SundquistLittle Canada21:02.1The Hub Cycling Team
DNFPeter OienSiouxfalls, SD22:51.5Queen City Cycling/sanford Health

2016 Green Acres Premium Cyclocross Results Day 2 - Elite Women

PlacePointsNameCity, StateTimeTeam
1112.5Megan BarrMinneapolis, MN48:43.9Angry Catfish
2122.16Robin WilliamsMinneapolis , MN49:26.9Iowa City Cycling Club
3131.82Stacy KalemkiarianStillwater49:44.0The Fix Studio
4141.48Anya MalarskiDuluth Mn50:14.0The Fix Studio
5151.14Corey Coogan CisekMinneapolis, MN50:21.1The Fix Studio
6160.8Jennifer NowlinPlymouth, MN50:50.6The Fix Studio
7170.46Diedre RibbensMinneapolis, MN51:17.9Orion Racing
8180.12Molly Clark-OienSioux Falls, SD51:32.6Queen City Cycling/sanford Health
9189.78Emily NordahlRochester, MN51:42.3North Dakota State University
10199.44Jenna WestlakeFarmington, MN52:42.2Minnesota Junior Cycling Inc.
11209.1Rebecca IrelandMinneapolis, MN53:10.8The Fix Studio
12218.76Katie ThompsonMinneapolis, MN53:56.0The Fix Studio
13228.42Carly ThomsenOmaha, NE54:43.5Midwest Cycling Trek Store/women's Cycli
14238.08Josephine BrindaMinneapolis, MN55:28.2The Fix Studio
15247.74Alexandra MagnerMinneapolis, MN56:46.3All-City
16257.4Mary ButhSaint Paul, MN57:20.4Loon State Cyclists
17267.06Ingrid AndersonIowa City, IA48:12.5Iowa City Cycling Club
DNFNicole MertzMinneapolis32:00.7Nocoast Racing Powered By Intelligentsia
DNFCarol SeippEagan, MN05:27.1
DNFTiana JohnsonMinneapolis, MN17:25.5