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Report and Results from Trans-Sylvania Epic

Posted by: Shannon Boffeli |June 9, 2011 3:19 AM
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Trans-Sylvania Epic MTB Stage Race - State College, Pennsylvania

Jeremiah Bishop and Karen Potter Claim Leader Jerseys at TSE

In it’s second year the Trans-Sylvania Epic (TSE) has transformed itself into a premier, national-level event boasting the most competitive pro field of any U.S. mountain bike stage race. This year’s field consists of some of the fastest riders in the States including world cup racers and top National Ultra-Endurance series contenders.

The Trans-Sylvania Epic kicked off it’s second season with a roughly 10-mile prologue today. The course included some short sections of the classic rock and roots the TSE is known for sprinkled in a mixture of dirt road and fast singletrack. Although the course was mostly dry, large mud bogs littered the course, offspring of the abundant rain and flooding that has plagued the east coast this season.

The men started things off with Cannondale rider Alex Grant getting first crack at the course. Grant, who finished second last season, turned in a strong ride with few mistakes.

Ultimately, it was Grant’s Cannondale teammate Jeremiah Bishop who would take the top spot in the prologue. Bishop has been focusing his early season in Olympic distance cross country races and having great success. He won the Pro XCT season opener in California and has recently been racing the world cup scene.

His fitness over short distances was evident today as the Cannondale rider elevated his ride to a different level taking over 3 minutes out of his closest rival.

Justin Lindine ( turned in a surprise performance today taking second. Lindine does much of his racing on the road. His familiarity with stage racing showed today and should make him a contender the rest of the week.

Lindine was followed by the Kona duo of Kris Sneddon and Barry Wicks. The Kona teammates are veterans of multiple stage races and are virtually unbeatable as a team. They both seem fit and their teamwork will add extra dimension to this week’s race.

Drew Edsall took fifth showing that he intends to be a contender for the TSE title again this season.

The women’s event is without a doubt the largest collection of elite-level women to ever compete at a single MTB stage race. This year’s field includes the reigning NUE series champion, reigning Leadville 100 champion, and an ex-world cup racer.

With all the high-profile riders in the start house it was Massachusetts rider Karen Potter (iRide Adventures/ who would steal away the leaders jersey.

"I guess I had some aggression I needed to get out,” Potter said after the finish.

 Despite being first out of the gate Potter turned in an impressive ride holding off 2010 TSE champion Selene Yeager (Team CF).

When asked about the stiff competition this year Potter said, "I wasn’t expecting to win today, I came into this race just hoping to be in the top-5.” And after shredding the singletrack sections Potter now sits atop the TSE leaderboard.

After finishing third at the recent Cohutta 100, Potter has proven she excels when the miles get long so look for her to be in contention all week.

Yeager showed her good form coming in second and is focused on defending her title this year.

Yeager was followed by NUE series champion Amanda Carey (Kenda/Felt) who also said she had a good race today and felt comfortable putting in hard efforts on the prologue course.

Sue Haywood, who has been keeping her hand in the endurance racing game since officially retiring, looked strong in fourth place followed by Leadville champ Rebecca Rusch (Red Bull/Specialized).

Tomorrow’s race is the Rothrock-Cooper’s Gap stage. Riders start the day with a moderate climb out of the camp, followed by a fast, fun decent, some gravel road, and loads of great singletrack, including Cooper’s Gap, which has become the "must ride” area in Rothrock, with long flowing downhills and just enough rocks to keep you on your toes.  You’ll return to the camp on a stretch of gravel road, through a concrete tunnel, and up one more short climb. 42.5 miles. 5300climbing.

Race Notes

- Today’s race produced few casualties. Women’s contender Vicki Barclay was one of the few exceptions as a crash left her with some bruised ribs. She intends to continue racing and should be on the line tomorrow morning.

- Early on it was reported that Ross Schnell crossed the line with one of the fastest times. Unfortunately for Schnell, he had unknowingly missed a portion of the course and his result was later corrected.

Click Here to view our coverage of the 2010 Trans-Sylvania Epic Prologue

Prologue Results

Pro Men

1, Jeremiah Bishop Cannondale 47.56
2, Justine Lindine 51.08
3, Kris Sneddon Kona 51.4
4, Barry Wicks Kona 51.51
5, Drew Edsall Super Cool Bike Shop 52.22
6, Alex Grant Cannondale
7, Jason Sager Jamis
8, Adam Snyder Jamis
9, Ryan Leech
10, Mark Weir Cannondale/WTB

Pro Women

1, Karen Potter iRide Adventures/ 1.01.13
2, Selene Yaeger Team CF 1.01.55
3, Amanda Carey Kenda/Felt 1.02.10
4, Sue Haywood Shenandoah Bikes 1.02.38
5, Rebecca Rusch Red Bull/Specialized 1.03.40
6, Vicki Barclay NoTubes/FTC/Performance Labs
7, Sonya Looney Topeak/Ergon

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