Canada’s Kabush takes third at Iceman Cometh
For the last 26 years, the Iceman Cometh Challenge has been among the highest, most prestigious points on the U.S. mountain bike calendar for North American elite riders.
For the last 26 years, the Iceman Cometh Challenge has been among the highest, most prestigious points on the U.S. mountain bike calendar for North American elite riders. Customarily held on the first Saturday of every November, the event draws a deep field from across the United States and Canada — British Columbia and Ontario, primarily, along with 36 American states. Fast, technical and grueling, the event has evolved over the years to become the single largest point-to-point mountain bike race in North America.
This year, as 2015’s competitors descended on Kalkaska, Michigan, was yet another world-class reason why.
More than 5,000 riders, divided into a range of classifications, lined up at the start in Kalkaska this year, beginning a 48-kilometre trek to Traverse City, Michigan. Along the course, riders contended with abandoned rail beds, skiing trails — specifically, the globally-known Vasa Nordic ski trail — dirt roads, and for much of it, technical two-tracks as the route winds through Michigan’s Pere Marquette State Forest. Essentially a “road race on dirt,” as the event’s website reads, that route is divided into one exhilarating stretch after another, culminating in the “Ice Breaker,” the ultimate climb to the finish.
It was a day dominated by some of the season’s most impressive names in the mountain bike world, and several of those names were Canadian.
In the Pro/Cat 1 Women’s division, the podium was claimed by Chlo Woodruff of the United States, ahead of compatriot Georgia Gould, a four-time American mountain bike national champion and LUNA Chix Pro Team veteran. Gould powered her way to second place, three seconds behind Woodruff’s winning time of 1:53:14. Taking third, meanwhile, was Gould’s teammate Katerina Nash, representing Czechoslovakia, who completed the course with a time of 1:53:30.
The Pro/Cat 1 Men’s division, meanwhile, saw a trans-border battle play out.
Nearly on top of one another, Troy Wells and Jeremiah Bishop of the United States claimed the top two spots on the podium, with times of 1:36:14 and 1:36:15, respectively. In third, powerhouse Vancouver Islander Geoff Kabush, representing Canada, put the Iceman course — and his 2015 season, officially — under his rubber a little under ten seconds back, claiming the final podium spot in 1:36:23.
Canada was also represented in the top 10, with Derek Zandstra’s sixth-place finish four seconds behind Kabush. In 15th, Toronto’s Cameron Jette rolled across the line with a time of 1:37:41.
Pro/Cat 1 Women
1 Chloe Woodruff (USA): 1:53:14
2 Georgia Gould (USA): 1:53:17
3 Katerina Nash (Cze): 1:53:30
4 Erin Huck (USA): 1:53:32
5 Kaitlyn Patterson (USA): 1:53:55
Pro/Cat 1 Men
1 Troy Wells (USA): 1:36:14
2 Jeremiah Bishop (USA): 1:36:15
3 Geoff Kabush (Can): 1:36:23
4 Todd Wells (USA): 1:36:27
5 Russell Finsterwald (USA): 1:36:27
6 Derek Zandstra (Can): 1:36:27
15 Cameron Jette (Can): 1:37:41