Mountain
National Championships
Mountain - Gravity

Enduro and Cross-Country Athletes Earn 25 Titles at Mountain Bike Nationals

By: Jackie Tyson  July 20, 2018

Snowshoe, W.Va. – The 2018 USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships continued Thursday on two sides of Snowshoe Mountain Resort, beginning with 12 cross-country events in Masters categories. Enduro races crowned 13 champions, including Pro Men & Pro Women. All seven stages for enduro races were completed on the same day.

ENDURO

There were seven timed stages for Enduro National Championships, with all age groups and classes beginning at Noon on Thursday. The first and final stages provided the 4.5 miles of trails and the most descending for the day, with 1,500 feet of elevation drop on each section. Stage three was a short half-mile section in the Snowshoe Bike Park and 500 feet of descending. In all, the seven stages combined for 9.1 miles of trails and 5,409 feet of descending.

In the Men’s Pro/Open division, 28-year-old Seamus Powell (Round Top, N.Y./KHS Factory Racing) made his move on the second stage across the valley section to score a repeat enduro championship. He held off Jimmy Smith (Boulder, Colo./Fuji Factory Team), who improved one position from last year to finish with the silver. Carson Lange (Austin, Texas) rounded out the podium with the bronze.

“There was a lot of pressure coming into it. Seven stages in one day, anything can happen - crash, mechanicals and stuff,” said Powell. “I just worked the whole week with practice, trying to stay fresh, kept my head up and rode fast. I did what I had to do to win. I was really happy with today, I was nervous, there are a lot of fast guys, a lot of local guys, a lot of capable riders, I'm just over the moon. I'm just really happy to defend this.

“This is my fifth national title in my career. When I won Super D, I won that back to back and that was really tough. Then to win this back to back is incredible. It's insane and I love it.”

In the Women’s Pro/Open division, the Stars-and-Stripes jersey was donned by 27-year-old Porsha Murdock (Bend, Ore./Juliana/Sram/Kenda), who last won an age group enduro national title in 2015. Amy Morrison (Auburn, Calif./Fuji Factory Team) was second and Cindy Abbott (Austin, Texas) was third.

“It feels awesome. It's super cool. The jersey signifies a lot, you get to wear the Stars & Stripes for the next year,” said first-year pro Murdock. “It’s totally different than many of the other races that I've done, (it has) a little bit more prestige behind it because it is a national championship. For me the last two (stages) were the ones that solidified it for me. I was behind, I checked after stage four, and I was behind Cindy Abbott. I had to do a little bit of math and that's not my strong suit. I just tried to keep it upright and go as fast as I could, and it worked.”

The 48-rider field in the Men’s 15-18 category was won by 18-year-old Max Beaupre (Sutton, Mass.), followed by Eli Smith (Avon, Colo.) in second and David Kahn (Putnam Valley, N.Y.) in third. Sixteen-year-old Sydney Compton (Charlottesville, Virg.) earned the title in the Women’s 15-18 race. Jazlyn Smith (Breckenridge, Colo.) was second and Isabella Naughton (Flagstaff, Ariz.) was third.

In the 19-29 age group, the men’s race was won by 22-year-old Tristan Broughton (Charleston, W.Va.) and the women’s race was won by 28-year-old Kristy Fiola (Burgettstown, Penn.)

In the 30-39 age group, Jake Fiola (Burgettstown, Penn.) captured the title for men and Kristine ContentoAngell (Bloomfield, N.J.) took the win for the women. 

A pair of riders from Davis, W. Va. earned victories in the 40-49 division, Jason Cyr for the men, and Susan Haywood for the women.

Paul Broughton (Winfield, W. Va.) took the title for the men’s 50-59 group, and Lynn Childers (Barboursville, Virg.) took the women’s title. Joe Fabris (Watsonville, Calif.) won the men’s 60-99 division.

CROSS-COUNTRY

Masters riders ruled the technical course for cross-country competitions on Thursday. The 4.6-mile course provided 564 feet of elevation gain, with a moss section at the northern end, before a descent across rocky, rooty sections to the finish behind The Village at Snowshoe Resort. 

Completing two laps for a repeat victory in the XC Women’s Master 50-54 division was Elizabeth “Libby” Sheldon (Washington, D.C.), who also won this year’s Marathon MTB championship in the same master’s category. Cameron Urban (Kentfield, Calif.) finished 1 minute, 37 seconds back for second, followed another eight minutes by 2018 Fat Bike national champion Katina Sayers (Tully, N.Y.) for third. 

“It was nerve racking but it was also very exciting to be able to do it twice,” said Sheldon about defending her national title. “The pine section was very fun, but I wasn't very good at this year because it was a little bit slippier than last year. And then the climbs were good, and the rocky section was fun. It was all good.”

Laurie Brandt (Montrose, Colo.) successfully defended her title in the Women’s Master 55-59 division, crossing the line 1 minute, 56 seconds ahead of Loretta Simpson (Woodstock, Ga.). Third place was secured by Karen Tripp (Sylva, N.C.)

The Women’s Master 60-64 title went to Beth Hoffmeister (Brevard, N.C.). Following less than one minute behind for second was Ellen White (Tuxedo, N.Y.), and Sue Hanna (Portland, Ore.) secured third place.

Nancy Waddell (New Castle, Del.) won her third consecutive national XC Master title, and the second in the 65-69 category.

In the Men’s Master 65-69 category, Gregory Pautsch (Hayward, Wisc.) sprinted across the line ahead of Doug Long (Chillicothe, Mo.) for the national XC title. West Virginia’s Bruce Wohleber (Elkins, W.Va.) finished third.

The Men’s Master 70-74 title went to Robert Ogren (Bloomington, Minn.), with Thomas Stanowski (Greenwood Lake, N.Y.) in second and Geroge Delgado (Catonsville, Md.) in third. 

Mike Taglio (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) captured the gold in the Men’s Master 75-79 division. Frederic Schmid (Waco, Texas) mastered the course in the Men’s Master 85-89 division, winning his 27th national championship jersey.

Two age groups in the Men’s Master competitions completed three laps of the XC course. The national title in the Master 55-59 field was captured by the Mountain State’s Gunnar Shogren (Morgantown, W.Va.), who took a dominate lead after the first lap.

“I was happy that I had a clean race and I had a great time,” said Shogren, who won a master cyclocross world championship in 2013. The win gave him a seventh USA Cycling national championship, winning three in mountain bike (age categories), three in cyclocross and one in mixed road. 

“It looked like a walkaway but it really wasn’t. Don Seib and I went into the first wood section together and he was riding real aggressive. And then he flatted. I was looking back, expecting him, but who knows. I had a nice clean ride after that, but I think it would have been a really good race between us.” 

Troy Zimmerman (Palm Beach Garden, Fla.) took the silver and Jeff Welch (Lenoir, N.C.) secured the bronze. Seib (Bryant Pond, Maine) did not finish the race.

The national title in the Master 60-64 field was earned by Randy Kerr (Gadsden, Ala.). George Smith (Menio Park, Calif.) crossed the line for second, just five seconds ahead of third-place finisher Dennis Barber (North Vernon, Ind.).

JULY 20 ACTION - DAY 4

A fourth day of racing continues Friday under windier and cooler conditions with junior, senior and masters cross-country, amateur downhill seeding runs, and pro dual slalom by the lake. With the record size fields for the men and women 15-16 cross country fields, the races will be split to ensure a fair and safe race for each group. The women will start at 6 p.m. for three laps, and the men will start at 7:15 p.m. for four laps.

RESULTS, SCHEDULE AND SOCIAL MEDIA