By Jeffrey Bramhall
Mary McConneloug (Kenda-Seven-NoTubes) and Jeremy Powers (Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com) rode to victory once again in day two of the Bay State Cyclocross.
The 12th stop of the Verge New England Championship Cyclocross Series (NECCS) in Sterling, Massachusetts, served up perfect late-fall New England weather and an exciting new spin on a classic course at Chocksett Middle School that took riders through a never-before-seen woods section and up a freshly built set of stairs.
McConneloug got off to a fast start, built a gap and held it with a combination of power and finesse on the technical circuit. Behind her, series leader Maureen Bruno Roy (MM Racing p/b Seven Cycles) rode in second position in front of a trio of Minuteman Road Club riders — Andrea Smith, Anna Barensfeld and Ann D’Ambrusio.
A rolled tubular well away from the pit followed by a second mechanical dropped Smith from contention, leaving Barensfeld and D’Ambrusio to work together. On the finishing straight, though, there was no teamwork as the two sprinted for third place; Barensfeld narrowly got the best of D’Ambrusio for her first series podium.
Powers’s victory on Saturday was certainly impressive, but on Sunday he was nothing short of dominant. By the end of the first lap, through a combination of a strong start, deft handling and massive strength, Powers was alone on the front and there he stayed until raising his hands in victory.
Behind him once again was series leader Dan Timmerman (Richard Sachs-RGM-Radix), seemingly ready to take another second place behind the Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com racer. Timmerman’s hopes were dashed as Justin Lindine (Bikereg.com-Joe’s Garage-IF) made a break out of his chase group, made contact with Timmerman and subsequently left him in the dust.
Once again, Lindine rode with absolute ferocity to second place, matching his previous best result in a Verge race. Timmerman held on for a comfortable third and the assurance that, as long as he shows up to NBX next weekend in Warwick, Rhode Island, he will win the series title.
The Verge NECCS shifts to Warwick, Rhode Island for its finale, the NBX GP of Cross, December 5-6.