LOUISVILLE, Ky. (VN) — Ryan Trebon gritted out a painful hour in Louisville Sunday, narrowly forfeiting his Exergy U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross overall lead to Jeremy Powers after a pre-race crash nearly forced him out of Sunday’s final race in the Derby City Cup.
Trebon (LTS-Felt) crashed hard during a reconnaissance of the course prior to the elite women’s race Sunday. As he made his way through the rolling, winding section of forest midway through the circuit, a gust of wind made his front wheel light as he rounded a sharp bend. Trebon came down with his bars turned and crashed hard on his left knee.
He rolled gingerly back to the LTS van in the infield of Eva Bandman Park and stretched out inside, his knee wrapped with ice. Team manager Dusty Labarr scrambled for medical support an hour before the start of the men’s race.
“I thought for sure I wasn’t going to be able to race,” Trebon told VeloNews after the elite men’s tilt.
If not for the series leader’s jersey on his back, Trebon, the runner-up on Saturday, might not have made the start. He took ibuprofen, mounted the trainer for warm-up and was on the front line, wearing a single leg warmer, for the gun.
“Just finish. I just wanted to finish the race and do well,” he said. “Yeah, I wanted to try and salvage the series and not lose so many points. That was the main determining factor for today.”
Trebon stayed with the front chase group, trailing Geoff Kabush (Rocky Mountain-Maxxis), for the first lap, but started going backward quickly. He eventually sank out of the top 10, but began pulling time back as the race wore on.
After an early test failed miserably, Trebon walked the single set of barriers and the steep flyover steps every lap, cursing the pain in his knee.
“It’s just really swollen. I could pedal; I wasn’t getting everything out of my legs and so I was definitely hurting pedaling, but the barriers and stairs I couldn’t run at all,” he said. “Every time I was thinking, ‘Fuck, I don’t want to get off my bike.’”
Trebon eventually settled into 10th and rode alone for the closing laps. Beyond the finish line he dismounted, bent over his saddle and spoke with Labarr. Trebon wore the pain on his face.
Back at the van, he pulled his leg warmer down, exposing a mess of bruising and swelling over his kneecap. When asked if he started feeling better late in the race, he said absolutely not, especially in the dry, bumpy sections in the field surrounding the pits.
“Not at all. I was just suffering. I was just trying to salvage something for the day and the series, not to lose so many points that I’d have to play catch-up in Bend,” said Trebon. “It’s pretty uncomfortable. It’s so swollen; when we were bouncing it was just jiggling and was so painful.”
With his 10th-place finish, Trebon relinquished his series lead to Powers (Rapha-Focus), but by only six points. With 226 points and the final two rounds December 10-11 in his hometown of Bend, Oregon, Trebon will have time to recover.
“It happens. At least you try, right?” he said. “I was just suffering. I wasn’t happy either way. There was no joy out there today, just pain.”