Second Annual Folsom Bike’s El Dorado Hills CX
12 October 2013
Always Racing Hard
Hollie McGovern (Real Wheels/Cycleution) was victorious in the small field for Elite Women at Folsom Bike’s El Dorado Hills Cyclocross Race. McGovern didn’t quite get the hole shot but by the second corner had the lead and never needed to look back.
To her credit, McGovern continued to push hard “as though she was still chasing from second place” and secured a dominant win. Monica Harris (Fun Sport Bikes Cycling), continuing her two-a-day racing at ‘cross events, took second place in the second annual race.
Avery Morin (Bear Development Team) put in an early charge to challenge McGovern but fell afoul of a sand trap on the former golf course. Morin went over in the sand of the course barrier and eventually retired from the race with an injury.
Men at Work…and Play
In a ‘cross race, it is unusual to see the first and second placed riders vie for dollar-hand-ups. However, such was the ferocious early pace, set by Jared Kessler (Folsom Bikes) and Keith Hillier (Team Rambuski Law), that they could settle into hard and steady riding with a mammoth lead.
At start/finish, there were several bottles on the ground with dollar bills and both Hillier and Kessler made attempted grabs. Despite winning the race, Kessler was unable to line his pockets with free cash and acknowledged Hillier as the winner of the competition within a race.
“We were talking to one another,” reported Kessler, “and by the third or fourth lap, and a few digs from both of us, we had such separation that I told Keith [Hillier] it was just him and I for the whole race. Then we just had some fun with it.”
“I was testing him a little bit,” continued Kessler. “This is my first time racing with him [Hillier] on a ‘cross bike. I’m new to it and he’s the local hot-shot. I just wanted to see how I fare.
“As a Mountain Biker, I really liked the course. It’s challenging. I like the steep up hills and the descents.”
As the race laps dropped away, it became time for Kessler and Hillier to settle the matter. Kessler attacked Hillier on the red dirt of the climb and managed a small gap.
Unfortunately, for themselves and the spectators, Hillier flatted on the descent and had to run most of the remaining lap. Acknowledging the disappoint after the race, Kessler crossed to make it tow-for-two for Folsom Bike’s, after last year’s win by Max Jenkins.
After losing the chance to duke it out with Kessler, Hillier then fell back into third. Chris McGovern (Real Wheels/Cycleution) passed Hillier on the final gravel straight to take the second step of the podium. This added to McGovern’s earlier victory in the Master’s A race where he came from well behind, after a first-lap flat, to overcome a 30-40 second gap and win.
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