Respect: Christina Perkins Adds Stars and Stripes to Her Collection in Masters 60-64

Christina Perkins (Team ProPower Coaching) took to the start line of the Women’s Masters 60-64 race looking to add a Stars-and-Stripes jersey to go with the rainbow stripes on the Master’s World Champion kit she was sporting on Thursday. She fought off a tough challenge from Kim Bear (New Mexico Spokettes Racing Team) to complete her mission and take home the National Championship.

Christina Perkins had a dominant ride to win the 60+ title. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 60+. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Christina Perkins had a dominant ride to win the 60+ title. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 60+. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

The race started with Perkins grabbing the holeshot and charging toward the hill with Bear. The two kept pace with one another up the hill and settled in for a wheel-to-wheel battle. Early in the race Bear was the aggressor, hitting corners with more zeal and pushing the pace through technical sections.

The two stayed together until about halfway through the second lap. Again, as happened all day on Thursday, Perkins was able to get away from Bear on the technical half of the course near the gazebo.

Perkins said her success in the technical sections came from taking a smart approach to riding the course, “You can’t attack the course, you have to treat it with respect because if you go too hard and get some ruts that are too big you can’t get out of them, and sure enough you’re going to go over the bars.”

Christina Perkins, winner of Masters 60-64. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Christina Perkins, winner of Masters 60-64. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Perkins kept the gap and cruised home to add another Stars-and-Stripes jersey to her collection. Bear finished second and Karen Purtill (Stedmans Bicycle Co) finished third.

Ruts? What Ruts? Shere Wins Master’s 65-69 Title

Tove Shere (Santa Fe, N.M./Sports Systems 505 Cycling) powered across the frozen ruts and needed no pits to take her fourth national championship title, this year in the Women’s 65-69 championship event.

Maurine Sweeney finished third in the Masters 65-69. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 60+. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Maurine Sweeney finished third in the Masters 65-69. 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 60+. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

“It was a really great day for me,” she said after the race. “I was afraid of the mud because I’m a big girl, so it’s really hard work for me. So I was able to run that hill pretty well because it was frozen.”

The frozen ruts played to her strengths as well, as she rumbled over them on her tires filled with 22- and 24-pounds respectively (front and rear).

Tove Shere wins the 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 65-69. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Tove Shere wins the 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 65-69. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

“When you’re my size, it’s sort of “What ruts?”” said Shere. “I just decided that “I’m big, I’ll just sit on those ruts,” right? I think for the smaller riders it’s kind of like popcorn, but I can just ride em.”

Shere pulled away from the other two cyclists in her age group, mixing in with the 60-64-year-old-group, which was run concurrently. Maurine Sweeney (Highlands Ranch, Colo./Racer X Cycling) finished second, two minutes down on Shere, on the same lap. Linda Shelburne (Sandwich, Mass./Cape Cod Cycling Club) was third.

Lockhart Perseveres for Master’s 70+ Championship

The 2016 Cyclocross National Champions were an odd one for Cyclocross Magazine in that it was the first year in as long as we can remember attending Nationals and not seeing Julie Lockhart on the top step of a podium and earn a jersey to take home. In Asheville, Lockhart crashed and injured herself, and Val Graciela took home the title that Lockhart was aiming for.

Julie Lockhart wins another Nationals title with her 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 75-79 win. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

Julie Lockhart wins another Nationals title with her 2017 Cyclocross National Championships, Masters Women 75-79 win. © A. Yee / Cyclocross Magazine

This year in Hartford, Lockhart tackled the course, breaking her shifter and effectively riding a singlespeed to win the Masters 75-79 title. Yet even though she was the uncontested winner, she wasn’t quite content. “This year I just wasn’t quite up to the skills level [needed] of the frozen hard course, I will be next year.”

“Practice, Practice, Practice, and be very persevering” is Lockhart’s secret to longevity and titles as well as her advice for anyone else who wants to still be racing at her age. The cyclocross legend rides on average five times a week, and never indoors. Perhaps the fresh air is another secret ingredient in her recipe of success.

2017 CX National Championships Hartford Day 3 Results Masters Women 60+

PlaceBibLastFirstTeamTimeGap
Masters Women 60-64
118PERKINSChristinaTeam ProPower Coaching28:48:00
216BEARKimNew Mexico Spokettes Racing Tea29:21:0033
319PURTILLKarenStedmans Bicycle Co34:14:005:26
417BERDE TOWNSENDSherryNorthStar Development Cycling35:31:006:43
520ZOLMANBridgetPotomac Velo Club29:38:00@1Lap
Masters Women 65-69
112SHEREToveSport Systems 505 Cycling29:11:00
213SWEENEYMaurineRacer X Cycling31:06:001:55
311SHELBURNELindaCape Cod Cycling Club Inc.30:10:00@1Lap
Masters Women 75-79
11LOCKHARTJulieNortheast Bicycle Club32:05:00