Recap: DCCX Day 2

Kerry Werner (Kona Endurance) swept the weekend and Carla Williams (Joe’s Bike Shop) took her first victory at a UCI-inscripted cyclocross race on day two of DCCX 2017, another UCI Class 2 event at the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, D.C. In dry, dusty and warm conditions similar to the preceding day, but with much of the course run in reverse, both racers won solo by convincing margins.

Though not frequently seen on the professional cyclocross circuit, Carla Williams is no stranger to DCCX success, having won both days of the 2014 weekend (the last year before the race gained UCI status), and is also a two-time National Endurance Series champion on the mountain bike. Determined to improve her start after missing the lead group the previous day, she made it to the back of leaders Allison Arensman (J.A. King p/b Blue Ridge ‘Cross), Cassandra Maximenko (Van Dessel) and Arley Kemmerer (Fearless Femme). Just after the finish line of the first lap, the leaders crashed and tangled, and only Williams, riding in fourth position at the time, was able to skirt it cleanly. Kemmerer — the winner of Saturday’s race — was able to get up and running quickly enough to make it back up to Williams, and the two would trade the lead to consolidate their gap on the rest of the field. Just after seeing two laps to go, Williams found herself at the front with a gap, due in part to Kemmerer’s softening rear tire. While Kemmerer experienced further issues with her backup bike, Williams padded her lead, eventually taking the win by over 40 seconds. Behind, Maximenko forced the pace of the chase group, eventually breaking it apart, and took the final podium spot over Arensman and Jennifer Malik (American Classic).

A determined Kerry Werner took the holeshot and drove the early proceedings, much as on the previous day. Instead of waiting for a selection to form, he extended a small gap on the first lap into a sizeable one by mid-race, and he looked to be riding away for a start-to-finish victory. But when he flatted his front tire, the chase group of Anthony Clark (Squid), Tristan Cowie (Triple Oaks Racing) and Justin Lindine (Apex/NBX/Hyperthreads) — who, with Werner, constituted the previous day’s winning group — rode up to and passed him just before entering the pit area. Within half a lap, he reattached to the leaders (pictured above), and was able to take partial recovery in the draft and observe his competitors. With under three laps to go, Werner opted to ride a loose dirt pitch which the rest of the group chose to run, and took advantage of their brief fatigue to create what would eventually become the winning move. Clark came around Cowie in the sprint for second place, much as on the previous day, and Travis Livermon (Maxxis-Shimano) and Bjorn Selander (Borah Teamwear) separately caught a fading Lindine for fourth and fifth positions. Werner, however, has now won the last four elite men’s races at DCCX.

Full results are available through USA Cycling. More coverage from DCCX will come later this week.

Lead photo © 2017 Bruce Buckley.

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