The Big Picture: NBX Grand Prix of Cyclocross Elite Women (Day 2)

After fading late the day prior, Emma White (CyclocrossWorld Development Team) struck back hard at day 2 of the NBX Grand Prix of Cyclocross to take the win. She and Ellen Noble (JAM Fund/NCC/Vittoria) both went clear of the field in the first moments of the race, followed by Jenna Greaser (JAM Fund/NCC/Vittoria). After trading early attacks, Noble was eventually unable to respond to White and would have to settle for 2nd. Behind them, Greaser rode virtually all race solo – trailing White and Noble, but well ahead of any chasers. Her consistent performance over race clinched the 3rd spot on the podium.White wasted ZERO time getting to the front to set a fast pace, seemingly looking to make up for yesterday’s second place.

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© 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

Before I’m even set up to shoot for lap 1, and White was already driving the pace with Noble hanging on her wheel and a substantial gap (7 seconds! First half a lap!) ahead of anyone else.

Usual fast-starter Greaser was also ahead of the rest of the field with a slight gap, too, beginning her long and solitary TT to 3rd place.

Through the logs, White and Noble were still together, with the gap to Greaser only increasing.
Through the logs, White and Noble were still together, with the gap to Greaser only increasing. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
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Greaser through the logs, now 9 seconds behind White and Noble. Arly Kemmerer (Level Eleven p/b PB2) briefly caught Greaser, but not for long. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

 

Down on the sand, White and Noble were still together…

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© 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
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© 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

…but Greaser had dropped Kemmerer, now riding around 8 seconds down.

Over the next lap, Noble and White would stick together, neither particularly keen top attack yet.

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© 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
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© 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

And then. IT HAPPENED. White absolutely dropped the hammer to put in a crippling attack against Noble, riding with the same explosiveness that launched her and White to their early lead:

On the beach, Noble was still managing to hang on.
On the beach, Noble was still managing to hang on. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
But half a lap later and White is GONE and Noble looked to have cracked, now riding almost 20 seconds behind White.
But half a lap later and White is GONE and Noble looked to have cracked, now riding almost 20 seconds behind White. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

In the fight for 4th and 5th, back at the beach:

Lysakowski got her front wheel caught in the sand before dismounting and crashed, forcing Kemmerer to take the long way around.
Lysakowski got her front wheel caught in the sand before dismounting and crashed, forcing Kemmerer to take the long way around. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
Despite the setback, Lysakowski was still up and running ahead of Kemmerer by the sand’s exit.
Despite the setback, Lysakowski was still up and running ahead of Kemmerer by the sand’s exit. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

A lap later, again at the sand, and the situation was largely the same: White smashing, Noble damage controlling…

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Greaser time trialing, © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
and Kemmerer and Lysakowski battling.
and Kemmerer and Lysakowski battling. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
While the top 3 podium spots were all but set, the fight for 4th and 5th was coming to a close. After leading Kemmerer for much of the race, Lysakowski finally began to fade and would finish 5th, letting Kemmerer slip away for 4th.
While the top 3 podium spots were all but set, the fight for 4th and 5th was coming to a close. After leading Kemmerer for much of the race, Lysakowski finally began to fade and would finish 5th, letting Kemmerer slip away for 4th. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
Greaser: 3rd place on the podium. 1st place in course color coordinating.
Greaser: 3rd place on the podium. 1st place in course color coordinating. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
White was able to easily cruise in for the win, a whopping 34 seconds ahead of Noble.
White was able to easily cruise in for the win, a whopping 34 seconds ahead of Noble. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com
Post-race, Noble was still smiling despite a little blood.
Post-race, Noble was still smiling despite a little blood. © 2015 John Kavouris www.johnkavouris.com

Apparently the mix of a little dry air, a little dust, and going HARD all race will do that to you. Which is kind of awesome.

And despite the 2nd place finish, Noble had plenty to smile about, indeed, securing 1st overall woman in the Verge Cyclocross Series, as well as the U23 women. Last rider to perform such a feat? One Tim Johnson!

Congrats to Emma for the win, and Ellen for series victory! Up next, the Elite men with the exciting conclusion of the weekend in Warwick.

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