by Celeste Taylor
ASHEVILLE, North Carolina—Karen Tripp (Finkraft Cycling Team) took home the gold in Thursday’s Masters Women 55-59 national championship race after taking a decisive early lead.
Tripp took control right off the grid and had a significant gap on the rest of the field less than half of a lap into the race. In her wake, the rest of the field jostled for podium positions. Deirdre Garvey (Boulder Cycle Sport/YogaGlo) led the chase about fifteen seconds behind Tripp. Shortly behind Garvey, Jennifer Defalco (MidAtlantic Colavita Women’s Team), Susan Lynch (Bikeway Source/Bell Lap Racing), Lisa Coyne (Team Group Health) and Ellen Reichel (Live Love Velo) scrambled to establish dominance and secure a spot on the final podium.
As the field rounded the turn into the second lap, Tripp’s 15 second lead remained largely uncontested but Lynch, the second place finisher in the same event in 2014, had overtaken Garvey by a sizable margin. Behind Garvey, Coyne and Defalco rode neck and neck.
Lynch continued her quest to overtake Tripp while widening her own gap on the rest of the field. Through the off camber headed toward Heckle Hill, Garvey tried to keep an ever-growing chase group at bay. Karen Nash (Cross) and Jennifer Harvey (HRRT) had joined Coyne and Defalco and all four were working to reel Garvey in.
As the riders crossed the line with two to go, Lynch was still fifteen seconds down on Tripp but had over a 30 second gap on all of the other competitors. Barreling down the pavement, Nash led Coyne and Garvey with Defalco and Harvey doing their best to stay in the mix.
While Tripp held Lynch at bay, Nash worked to open a gap on Garvey, who was slowly edging out Coyne. Coyne and Garvey, the second and third place finishers of 2015, were not easily dropped and together they were able to reel Nash back in over the course of the final lap.
Tripp won the event handily with Lynch coming in second in a solid showing behind her. Garvey was able to out ride her competitors for bronze with Coyne and Nash filling the final podium steps.
Watch Tripp’s take on her victory and see the full race results below.
2016 USA Cycling Cyclocross National Championships Women's 55-59 Full Results
|1||Karen TRIPP||Finkraft Cyling Team||41:37.|
|2||Susan LYNCH||Bikeway Source/Bell Lap Racing||42:11.|
|3||Deirdre GARVEY||Boulder Cycle Sport/ YogaGlo||42:58.|
|4||Lisa COYNE||Team Group Health||43:09.|
|8||Sarah BARBER||New Pioneer Food Co-op||45:44.|
|9||Ellen REICHEL||Live Love Velo||46:46.|
|10||Marni HARKER||Colavita Midatlantic Womens Te||46:57.|
|12||Lynn PITSON||Hearts Racing Club||49:11.|
|13||Elizabeth WILLIAMS||Sturdy Girl Cycling Club & Race||49:20.|
|15||Lisa BONGIORNO||Frazier Cycling||49:45.|
|19||Evelyn EGIZI||Patapsco Bicycles||41:04.|
|20||Sandra MORRISSEY||Team Cross Colorado||41:45.|
|21||Ana BAILIE||L5Flyers Cycling Team||42:13.|