West steps up to elite to win again in Peterborough

Repeat under 23 national champion solos away from field to take top honours in Sunday's C2 event

November 12th, 2018 by | Posted in Cyclocross, News | Tags: , ,

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough

The snow started falling in Peterborough shortly after Saturday’s championship racing concluded and rarely let up through the following days racing.

A strong field of women returned to the start line Sunday for another try at the course, now covered in even more snow than the previous day. In the absence of Maghalie Rochette, who was off to Europe for her next block of racing after winning the elite women’s national championship on Saturday, the women’s race was wide open.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
Ruby West ascends the treacherous Shimano run up

On Saturday, Ruby West rode up through most of the elite women’s field, passing all but the top four riders after starting a full minute behind them on her way to winning a second straight Under 23 national title. Many were wondering what would happen when she had the chance to start even with the elites. Sunday was West’s opportunity, as the under 23 and masters women’s field were all on the start line together.

West wasted no time answering that question. Early in the first lap the Specialized-Tenspeed Hero rider, started pulling away from the field. She rode solo for the entire 45 minute race.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
Olympic track medallist Jasmin Duehring leads Sidney McGill and Catharine Pendrel early on in Sunday’s C2 event

Behind her, a constantly changing battle for the final podium spots kept the crowds on Heckler’s Hill entertained.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
Walter somehow finds solid footing up Heckler’s Hill

Jenn Jackson (AWI Racing) and Sandra Walter (Liv Cycling Canada) jumped out to the early advantage. Before a rematch of Saturday’s medal battle could unfold, Jackson pulled away from Walter, only to be joined by a surging Catherine Pendrel (Clif Pro Team).

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
Jackson leads Pendrel down Heckler’s Hill

After getting caught up in the early traffic, the Canadian Olympian moved her way through the field, picking off rider after rider until she caught the young Ontario rider.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
Ruby West high fives fans on her way to a second win in Peterborough

The final lap, the two were locked wheel to wheel. Pendrel started pulling ahead, with Jackson doing her best to follow the Olympic mountain bike medallist’s lines.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
After finishing fourth on Saturday, Pendrel happy to be up into second on Sunday. Jenn Jackson was within sight of the Olympian but couldn’t hold on to the finish

In the end, experience and tactics won out over power. Jackson’s accelerations across the flats and up hills were matched by Pendrel, who get ahead of the younger rider over the final features, to take the silver behind West.

canadian cyclocross championships 2018 peterborough
West and Jackson after the finish in Sunday’s C2 event

Jackson held on for third, with Walter closing near behind in fourth. Mical Dyck (Naked Factory Racing) repeated her fifth from Saturday.