The traveling cyclocross show continued Friday night under the lights at the Johnson County Fairgrounds where the Elite Men lined up for the C1 event of the weekend. Due to travel and race fatigue from the heavy schedule the past week many top men chose to sit out the Friday night race, but those itching to race lined up ready to go.
Quickly after the women finished racing the men lined up and after the whistle blew they took off down the long start/finish stretch with Kerry Werner getting the holeshot and leading into the first rutted off-camber, before he was quickly passed by Anton Ferdinande.
Unlike the women’s race which splintered pretty quickly, the first few laps were a tight group of ten containing Ferdinande, Werner, Vincent Baestaens, Thijs Aerts, Eric Brunner, Michael Van Den Ham, Gosse Van Der Meer, Brannan Fix, Lance Haidet, and Andrew Dillman. Clocking in extra fast lap times, around 5 minutes, the men went round and round for a 12 lap race.
The front group eventually dwindled down to contain Aerts, Ferdinande and Brunner (who was putting in an impressive ride) with Baestaens a few seconds behind. With roughly 7 laps to go Brunner suffered a broken chain on the steep climb up Mt. Krumpit (most of the top men were riding the chewed-up hill), leaving him to coast, scoot, and run his way to Pit 2, losing valuable time and many placings along the way.
After a quick bike exchange, Brunner was on his way with chase mode engaged. It looked as if the leading duo was about to take this bike race home as they rode away from everyone and continued to put time into Baestaens.
Meanwhile, Brunner was patiently putting in his time. Remaining calm and keeping his head in the race, Brunner slowly but surely caught rider after rider and found himself riding in fifth, then fourth and then eventually catching up to Baestaens in 3rd with roughly two to go. 1.5 laps remaining in the race and Baestaens found another gear eventually catching the leading duo Aerts and Ferdinande, looking to leave Brunner in fourth.
“I changed bike with three laps to go and I feel a little bit better, and I saw that I came close and I say ‘yeah, come on Vincent, go fo it one last time and just try it, and if it doesn’t work out, you tried,” Baestaens recalled.
The three went up Mt. Krumpit together, but a mishap and tangle between Aerts and Ferdinande at the top of Mt. Krumpit gave Baestaens just the time and space he needed to open up a gap. By the time he hit the end of the sandpit he had a solid eight seconds on the two.
Baestaens escape was helped by an Aerts mishap. “I couldn’t get out of my pedal and I crashed on Mt. Krumpit,” Aerts explained. “That small mistake is a big mistake to win or second place.”
Baestaens took advantage, and added to his lead to the finish rolling across to take the win by 22 seconds as Aerts and Ferdinande looked at each other, waiting for one to make a move.
As the crowd was waiting for the Ferdinande and Aerts to come down the finish stretch, they were surprised to see Brunner had caught the duo and was leading them down the start stretch with a small lead.
“It was totally unexpected, I came around the last corner and they were right there, and they were looking at each other, so I just hit it,” said Brunner, the 2019 U23 USA Cycling National Champion.
Brunner started his sprint and it looked like he might hold it for second, but was beat to the line by Aerts. Brunner held off Ferdinande to take the final step on the podium.
It’s a quick turnaround after a night race. After his podium appearance and signing autographs, Baestaens attached a light to his helmet and ode back to his hotel.
Full results below.
2021 Jingle Cross Day 1 Results: Elite Men
|1||7||Vincent BAESTAENS||CX TEAM DESCHACHT-GROUP HENS-CO||1:00:45.||4:56|
|2||21||Thijs AERTS||BALOISE TREK LIONS||1:01:07.||5:19|
|3||30||Eric BRUNNER||Blue Competition Cycles p/b Bui||1:01:07.||5:01|
|4||18||Anton FERDINANDE||PAUWELS SAUZEN - BINGOAL||1:01:08.||5:20|
|5||20||Michael VAN DEN HAM||Easton Giant CX||1:01:37.||5:18|
|6||28||Gosse VAN DER MEER||*Bombdrike/Hunt||1:02:05.||5:25|
|7||35||Brannan FIX||Fix Racing||1:02:15.||5:11|
|9||25||Lance HAIDET||L39ION of Los Angeles||1:03:01.||5:21|
|10||8||Kerry WERNER||Kona Maxxis Shimano||1:03:33.||5:19|
|12||41||Matt LELIVELD||Hardwood NextWave||1:03:45.||5:06|
|13||67||Jacob LEBLANC||Competitive Edge Racing||1:03:57.||5:14|
|14||64||Brian MATTER||Linear Sport Racing||1:03:58.||5:19|
|16||39||Lief RODGERS||Giant Canada Off-Road Team||1:04:17.||5:06|
|17||71||Michael LARSON||Red Kite Fund||1:04:20.||5:09|
|18||94||Tommy SERVETAS||Competitive Edge Racing||1:04:24.||5:13|
|19||74||Ross ELLWOOD||Alpha Bicycle Co. - Groove Silv||1:04:26.||5:15|
|@2Lap||87||Mark MYLES||Be Real Sports||5:25|
|@2Lap||90||Andrew GINIAT||The Pony Shop p/b KPMG||5:24|
|@2Lap||63||Rory JACK||The Pony Shop p/b KPMG||5:26|
|@2Lap||51||Casey HILDEBRANDT||Donkey Label||5:33|
|@2Lap||56||Nick CARTER||NorthStar Development||5:56|
|@2Lap||62||Dylan ZAKRAJSEK||KCCX Elite Cyclocross Team||5:40|
|@3Lap||58||Terol PURSELL||Forever Endurance||5:31|
|@3Lap||77||Joseph SCHMALZ||Steve Tilford Foundation Racing||5:29|
|@3Lap||80||Ian MCDONALD||KCCX Elite Cyclocross Team||5:40|
|@4Lap||54||Mathieu BELANGER BARRETTE||BarreTendre||5:26|
|@4Lap||43||Hugo BRISEBOIS||Ride with Randall||5:30|
|@4Lap||81||Frederick JUNGE||Broom Wagon Works||5:32|
|@4Lap||85||Vin HLUDZINSKI||Boulder Junior Cycling||5:38|
|@4Lap||69||Nick LANDO||Competitive Edge Racing||5:38|
|@4Lap||61||Nicholas TABARES||ASU Devo Pro CX||5:56|
|@5Lap||82||Dillon MCNEILL||Trek Cyclocross Collective||5:39|
|@5Lap||70||Seamus OCONNOR-WALKER||Donkey Label||5:39|
|@5Lap||92||Finnegan OCONNOR||Comp Edge Racing||5:44|
|@5Lap||79||Jeremy BLOYD-PESHKIN||The Pony Shop p/b KPMG||5:37|
|@5Lap||75||Josh BAUER||Angry Catfish - Endura||5:38|
|@6Lap||52||Owen BRENNEMAN||CXHAIRS DEVO : TREK BIKES||5:54|
|@7Lap||59||Luke ARENS||Adapt Cycling||5:31|
|@7Lap||84||Michael SANDERS||Wahoo Fitness||5:48|
|@7Lap||60||Kevin MCCONNELL||Iowa City Cycling Club||5:58|
|@7Lap||88||Nicholas LEMKE||KUHL Cycling Team||6:01|
|@8Lap||76||Matthew RILEY||Linear Sport / Trek||5:54|
|@10Lap||83||Donald MORGAN||Pentabike Racing||7:10|
|DNF||96||Jonathan ANDERSON||J moneyz factory racing||5:26|
|DNF||68||Kyle JOHNSON||Giant Bicycles/ HiFi Sound Elit||5:49|
|DNF||93||Jules VAN KEMPEN||Alpha Bicycle Co.- Groove Silve||5:11|
|DNF||78||Kaler MARSHALL||Team Walla Walla||6:03|
|DNF||89||Lucas STIERWALT||Aether Racing||5:52|
|DNF||95||Luke FEUERHELM||KCCX Elite Cyclocross Team||7:10|
Check out the full results for the Elite Women’s race at the 2021 Jingle Cross Day 1 here.