2019 Speed of Light WorldTour: Cyclocross AND Singlespeed Night
Due to a few schedule squeezes, Cyclocross and Singlespeed Night were squeezed into one. Pick your poison…any poison.
One gear or skinny tires? Last night, a dozen or so riders went for a little something special. In the last specialty-bike night of the year, it was an eclectic mix of singlespeeds and ‘cross bikes toeing what was the first truly sandy start line of 2019. Usually, we’ve seen most of our fastest times for SOL by the end of June, and those sand pits get deeper and wider as summer rolls on. As they get more Tatooine-y, times tend to slow up, affected by Tour Competition motivations and other factors.
Suffice it to say, speed wasn’t an issue last night. From the gun, John O’Hearn’s 3-D printed singlespeed (we should really do a write-up on his set-up) was in the mix…and ahead of it. Conventional wisdom would have expected O’Hearn to suffer on the early climbs…but he didn’t. Then, he should have gotten dropped on the downhill portion of Special K…but didn’t. He didn’t get dropped on the Power Section, either, even with the final selection of Jeff Owens, Cody Sovis, and Sunset Scott throwing down an 8:05 time, one of the fastest ever recorded. It wasn’t until Anita’s that Owens’ and Sovis’ plethora of gears and O’Hearn’s decided lack thereof saw him dropped, and by that time, he was safely ensconced in third place and double points for his heroic effort.
The raft of specialty bikes saw some really strong rides, most of them coming from singlespeeds. Garrett Jenema was sixth on the day with his singlespeed, just a short ways back from TC’s most die-hard cyclocrosser Kent McNeil. Brad Pauly and Dan Ellis slid home in 11th and 12th places on ‘cross bikes, with Ryan Reiter, Patrick Cotant, and Will Unger doubling their points as well in the top twenty.
The Cyclocross crown stays with Cody Sovis, however, after he turned in a solid 34:7 behind a comfortable (and slightly sniffling) Jeff Owens. Both riders were feeling the effects of a brutal Tuesday Night Ride and the first hot day of summer. Temperatures were nearing 90 degrees, and plenty a rider went #FullSchleck to find a little relief from the heat and humidity.
Both Sovis and O’Hearn were all-in throughout the themed nights, and those points have moved them well clear of the field on 208 and 205 points, respectively. Giro winner Jeff Owens is at 161, with Dan Ellis, Brad Pauly, and Garrett Jenema all over the 100 point mark. Kent’s cyclocross exploits vaulted him into the top ten on 90 points, SOL World Champion Kyle Macdermaid, absent since May, now tenth on 87.
There will be no SOL next week in observance with the Fourth of July, but we’re coming back at it hard with Stage One of the Tour Competition on July 11. For the Tour, our KOM is the infamous Boonenberg, with the Sprint/Points classification centered around the Power Section .The Stages will be held as follows:
Stage One - July 11 - Sprint Stage Double points on the Power Section
Stage Two - July 18 - Mountain Stage Double points on the Boonenberg
Stage Three - July 25 - The Queen Stage. Two laps!
Stage Four - August 1 - Time Bonus Stage 20, 18, 12, 8, 4 second time bonuses on the line