What's Cool In Road Cycling

Juniors Seize the Day for Seven Titles during Road Amateur Nationals

Amateur Road National Championships presented by Papa John’s returned for a second day in the Bluegrass State at Louisville’s historic Cherokee Park. Women’s and men’s juniors took over the 7.9-kilometer course under cloudy skies and brightened the day with dazzling performances in seven categorized races.

The Men’s Junior 17-18 race featured the largest field of the day, 124 riders, and the most circuits in the park, 15 laps for 115 kilometers. Six riders went clear with six laps to go, building a significant gap that grew to to one minute and 30 seconds. From this selection, Cole Davis (Folsom, Calif./NCCF/Team Specialized Juniors) won the national championship and an automatic spot on the world championships team to compete in the Junior 17-18 event in Norway in September. He covered the course in 2:52:53. Kevin Vermaerke (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calf./LUX/Stradling p/b Specialized) finished second in the sprint finish, followed by Charles Velez (El Dorado HIlls, Calif./Data Driven Athlete Racing) in third.

The Women’s Junior 15-16 Stars-and-Stripes jersey was awarded to Megan Jastrab (Apple Valley, Calif./Swami’s Junior Development Team), who recovered from a solo crash on the first lap to rejoin the eight-rider breakaway. Jastrab, last year’s Junior 13-14 champion, worked at the front with Katie Clouse (LIttleton, Colo./Visit Dallas DNA Cycling) for most of the seven-lap, 54-kilometer race, then outsprinted the Colorado rider for a narrow victory in a time of 1:36:20. Jane Tullis (Rome, Ga./Frazier Cycling Team) rolled in just one second back for third.

Alijah Beatty (Washington, Iowa/Northstar Development Cycling) moved to the top step of the podium this year in the Women’s Junior 17-18 race. The 2016 silver medalist covered 84 kilometers over 11 laps in 2:45:20 for the victory. Megan Heath (Alpharetta, Ga./Rally Cycling Devo) and Summer Moak (Phoenix, Ariz./Sho-Air TWENTY20 Development) followed in the lead group of 12 riders in second and third, respectively, with the same time.

The top prize in the Men’s Junior 11-12 road race was taken in a sprint by Walter Rozek (Folsom, Calif./Reliable/Taco Bell Racing p/b Kinetic Cycles). He covered the three-lap, 23-kilometer event in 42:46. Wesley Haggstrom (Clemmons, N.C./Hearts Racing Club) finished a wheel back for the silver, and William Cucco (Federal Way, Wash./Seattle Cancer Care Alliance Cycling Team) earned bronze, just one second off the pace.

Luke Feuerhelm (Merrill, Iowa/Central Junior Cycling Devo) soloed to the line to capture the title for the 30-kilometer Men’s Junior 13-14 contest, in a time of 47:59. Will Sharpe (Katy, Texas/Northwest Cycling Club) sprinted to the line 37 seconds later for second place, edging Adin Jose (Milpitas, Calif./ Velo Reno p/b Western Lithium), who earned the third podium spot among the 62 contestants.

In the Women’s Junior 11-12 road race, Lilly McLeod (Brooksville, Fla./Sho-Air TWENTY20 Development) rode a strong three laps and finished a bike length in front of Alexa Stierwalt (Maineville, Ohio/ProChain Junior Development) for the win in 44:06. Divya Verma (Breinigsville, Penn./T Town Elite) rode alone to third place, seven seconds back.

Carmen Davidson (Byron Center, Mich.) made the winning charge in the final 100 meters to win the Women’s Junior 13-14 category. Olivia Cummins (Fort Collins, Colo./Melton Design Build/GS Forza Cycling) finished second with the same time of 56:38. In the following group of three riders, Makayla MacPherson (Corona, Calif./Swami’s Junior Development Team), who was second last year, captured third.

Racing concludes Sunday with 12 categorized events in downtown Louisville for the Amateur Road National Championships presented by Papa John’s and the Professional Criterium National Championships. A new 1.5-kilometer course features a start/finish on W. Main Street near N. 7th Street. There are six distinct corners on this serpentine course. Heading east on W. Main, the first section uses S. 6th, W. Market, and S. 5th streets then travels east on W. Main for one block to connect to N. 6th St., W. River Rd, Washington St., N. 8th St. and a final pass back on W. Main St.

Events begin Sunday at 8 a.m., with the pro women racing from 5:45-7 p.m. and the pro men racing from 7:15-8:45 p.m. The awards ceremony follows at 9 p.m. Live streaming will be available on Sunday for U23 and pro criterium races beginning at 3 p.m. on the USA Cycling YouTube Channel. Fans can also follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, @USACycling, using hashtag #RoadNats (Thurs. to Sat.) and #CritNats (Sun.).

Follow #roadnats and @One2Go_Results on Twitter for live updates each day of the event.

A full schedule of events and course maps are provided online:
– Amateur Road National Championships presented by Papa John’s www.usacycling.org/2017/amateur-road-nationals
– Pro Criterium and TTT National Championships

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