Page, Compton win elite 'cross crowns

Jonathan Page rode to a third consecurtive title
December 12, 2004 (Portland, Ore.) –
A cold and windy day in Portland set the stage for Jonathan Page to ride away with his third consecutive national cyclo-cross title this afternoon. Earlier in the day, Katie Compton beat all the favorites in the exciting upset that was the elite women’s race.

Page, who pulled away from the field in the first lap, used his strong legs to master the wind and the mud this afternoon. Early in the race, Ryan Trebon (Corvallis, Ore.), teammate Barry Wicks (Corvallis, Ore.), Todd Wells (Durango, Colo.), Marc Gullickson (Boulder, Colo.), and Mark McCormack (Foxboro, Mass.) were among the elite group of chasers. Trebon became the man to make the race interesting as he broke away from the other chasers and went in pursuit of the defending champion. After a few laps of hard chasing, Trebon was able to catch the leader. “It took me a while to find my rythm,” he told announcers later. “On this course, you’re on the gas the whole time. There’s no recovery.”

With two laps to go, Page attacked and opened up another gap on the tall racer from Oregon. This time, he stayed away until he rode away with the victory. Trebon improved upon his 2003 bronze medal performance by finishing in second, while Todd Wells took bronze and Barry Wicks secured fourth. In what would be his final race before retirement, Marc Gullickson claimed the final spot on the podium.

Katie Compton bested the favorites for the victory
The elite women lined up before the men for their thrilling turn in the mud and an unexpected outcome. A talented field with forces such as Gina Hall (Ashland, Ore.) and Ann Knapp (Des Moines, Wash.) toed the line first, but it was Katie Compton (Colorado Springs, Colo.), who started on the fifth row, to steal the spotlight.

2004 Olympian Mary McConneloug (Chilmark, Mass.) set the early pace and broke away with Compton, Hall, and Knapp. The leader fell behind in the second lap however as Compton picked up her pace and went off the front. Hall and Knapp chased hard for the remaining laps but failed to make any significant gains on the leader.

Compton, who rode tandem with Karissa Whitsell to a bronze medal in the Paralympics, was excited with her victory saying, “This was just a good day. Good legs. Good race.” Riding solo on such a windy day makes it difficult to stay away but Compton was powerful. “I tried to keep the pressure on,” she explained. “I could hear Ann coming. I heard the people cheering for her.”

“It was a surprise,” Gina Hall commented after her silver medal finish. “It’s really good to see another really strong rider. It’s good for the sport.” Knapp claimed the bronze medal while McConneloug and yesterday’s new Master’s National Champion Sarah Kerlin secured fourth and fifth respectively.

Gina Hall and Ann Knapp chased hard, but never caught Compton
Earlier in the day, Bjorn Selander secured a national title in the Junior Men’s 17-18 race. Showing his form early on, Selander rode at the front with the likes of Teejay Van Garteren (Missoula, Mont.), Mitchell Peterson, and Brady Kappius (Littleton, Colo.) until he was able to break away. “Brady Kappius and I were riding side by side,” the winner explained afterwards, “When I passed him, I just kept going and didn’t look back.” The third lap proved to be the decisive point in the race as Selander increased his lead. By the bell lap, he had 20 seconds on his nearest threats and powered through the final stretch for the win.

Today’s events marked the end of the 2004 U.S. National Cyclo-Cross Championships. Photos of all the action will be available here.

Elite Men
Jonathan Page
Ryan Trebon
Todd Wells
Barry Wicks
Marc Gullickson

Elite Women
Katie Compton
Gina Hall
Ann Knapp
Mary McConneloug
Sarah Kerlin

Junior Men 17-18
Bjorn Selander
Nicholas Weighall
Brady Kappius
Mithell Peterson
Peter Stetina

This Article Published December 12, 2004 For more information contact: