Putney Cider House Classic – Root 66

Putney Cider House Classic – Melone and Quinlan Win Cider House Classic: Tautfest and Quinlan Crowned 2015 VT State Champs

The 2015 Putney Cider House Classic followed much of last year’s course staged from the Putney School in Putney, Vermont.   Last year’s event was on virtually all new, freshly-cut trails made by local expert trails builders.  This year it followed essentially the same course with a couple additional singletrack sections that cut out some double track routes.

The pro/elite and expert categories were treated to 9+ miles of awesome yet very challenging singletrack.  There were several sections of fast, flowing sections with smoothly banked turns and many more sections of typical Vermont root-strewn trails and pitchy climbing.  All in all, the course had over 1,300’ of climbing per a lap which was certainly felt by race end.

Cider House Classic offers up endless Vermont one-track

Cider House Classic offers up endless Vermont one-track

Racecourse designers were welcome to racer input as they have lots of land to work with to make the course even better, although most racers seemed quite happy with the current course.  An added bonus, racers received a slice of delicious homemade apple pie, homemade ice cream and apple cider for post race recovery.

In the Elite men’s race, New England’s powerhouse, Billy Melone (ATA Cycles) set a pace that could not be matched.  Noah Tautfest (Bicycle Express) and Neal Burton (ERRace) chased in the opening sections but instead battled it out for 2nd and 3rd.  Burton had a small edge over Tautfest but burped his tire and had to stop to put some air in and thus lost his gap.  Melone finished 1st in 1’34”, Tautfest in 2nd in 1’37” and Burton in 3rd in 1’38.

The Elite women’s race had Karen Potter (Pivot/Epic Brewing) take the hole shot but was overtaken shortly thereafter by local rider, Kate Northcott (West Hill Shop) and Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express).  Northcott held the lead for much of the first lap but Quinlan proved the stronger rider of the day passing Northcott for the win.  Quinlan finished in 1’55”, Northcott in 2nd in 1’58” and Potter in 2’01”.

Kimberly Quinlan and Noah Tautfest earned the Vermont State Championship wins.

Click Here for full results from all categories


Kenda Cup East #3 – Vermont

Millstone Grind, Websterville, Vermont

Kenda Cup East #3

Written by: Karen Potter

The warm and remarkably dry weather the Northeast was enjoying came to a rapid end overnight Saturday. Warm, humid 85-degree temperatures changed to frigid 48 degrees and heavy rain for race day catching several racers off guard and unprepared for the cold, wet conditions. While the downpours had passed before the elite racers took the course, rain was still falling at the start of the race making for difficult conditions on an already technical course. Mud would cake up racers’ tires making traction very tough. Conditions improved somewhat once the rain stopped early in the race.

In a remarkable feat of grit and ambition, series leader, Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) made the long trek from central Pennsylvania to Vermont to make it 8 days in a row of racing. After coming in 3rd overall in the Trans-Sylvania Epic Stage Race, Anthony was able to maintain her lead in the Kenda Cup East series with a 5th place finish at Millstone despite the frigid temps and muddy conditions adding to her fatigue.

Crystal Anthony grinder her way toward home

Crystal Anthony grinder her way toward home

It was Elisa Otter (Bicycle Express) showing off her Vermont skills taking the hole shot and hammering away from the rest of the field to take the win. She had no problem handling the very technical course in the slick, muddy conditions. Karen Potter (Pivot/Epic Brewing) followed behind Otter into the singletrack but could not keep her pace once in the woods. Kathleen Harding (Rare Disease Racing) had Potter in her sights most of the race but was unable to close the gap, finishing in 3rd to Potter. Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing) followed up in 4th.

In a the Elite Men’s field, series leader, Billy Melone (ATA Cycles) won his 3rd in a row but not without a bit of a struggle. Tom Sampson (Adigga Racing) lead the race with a significant gap to Melone, but Melone was able to bridge up to the front and take the win. Sampson faded in the final lap to finish 4th. A sprint finish ensued for 2nd place between Noah Tautfest (Bicycle Express Racing) and 18-year-old Charles Faucher Robert (Pivot Cycles-Ote) with Faucher edging out Tautfest. Tyler Berliner (ENGVT) finished in 5th.

Kenda Cup East Round 2 – Weeping Willow EFTA – Ipswich, Massachusetts

Crystal Anthony and Billy Melone Continue Domination of Kenda Cup East

Written by: Karen Potter

The second stop of the Kenda Cup East took place Sunday, May 17th at a popular New England course in Willowdale Forest in Ipswich, Massachusetts.

Warm and dry weather coming into the race made for a dusty course with lots of loose corners. The 9.5-mile course entailed a few small climbs but mostly fast, windy trails making cornering at speed a much needed skill.

Predicted rain the day before did not transpire and despite being near the seacoast where temperatures are usually cooler in the spring, race day turned out to be quite warm. With elite racers doing three laps on the 9.5-mile course, hydration and nutrition were critical factors.

Local racer, Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) was favored among the women’s field. With her fitness peaking for the Transylvania Stage Race starting next weekend and racing on her home turf, she took charge from the start and soloed strong to the finish in 2:42. Elisa Otter (Bicycle Express) and Karen Potter (Pivot/Epic Brewing) tried to hold her wheel but couldn’t match Anthony’s pace on the opening climb.

Otter held onto second place until the final lap where lack of eating caught up with her. Potter gained on her towards the end of the second lap and was able to overtake Otter early in the final lap to finish 2nd in 2:49. Otter held onto 3rd place finishing in 2:54 with Bryna Blanchard (Wyndham Mountain) closing in for 4th in 2:55. Ellen Noble rounded out the Elite Women’s podium finishing in 3:02.

Billy Melone (ATA Cycles) continued his winning streak finishing in 2:22. Dan Timmerman was able to mirror Melone’s pace in the first lap but mechanicals kept him in chase mode and used up any energy reserves he had to challenge Melone for the win.

Timmerman finished 2nd in 2:25. Neal Burton (ERRace) couldn’t match Melone and Timmerman’s pace and found himself in no man’s land riding solo to third place in 2:27.

Christopher Ziegler and Matt O’Keefe (ATA Cycles) rounded out the Elite Men’s podium finishing 4th and 5th respectively.

Full results found here: http://www.barttiming.com/summer/results15/willow15-1.pdf

Kenda Cup East Race #1

Fat Tire Classic – Root 66 Race Series – Kenda Cup East Race #1

Written by: Karen Potter

The first round of the Kenda Cup East was held Sunday at the Root 66 Race Series Fat Tire Classic in Farmington, Connecticut. It was a course that highlighted aerobic fitness with smooth, fast rolling singletrack winding through the woods with minimal rest. The five-mile lap has a cyclocross feel with the seemingly constant accelerations needed out of the endless number of corners.

Race day was another cool spring day in New England and pleasantly dry. Both men’s and women’s elite fields had great turnout from all over the northeast.

The men’s elite race started insanely fast as getting the hole shot was an important factor, although there were sections of double track for passing in some spots.

Billy Melone (ATA Cycles) proved his fitness to be solid as he soloed start to finish in 1:53:32.

Behind him the battle for the remainder of the podium spots was intense with a large pack riding together until attacks splintered the group.

Christopher Hamlin pulled away from the chase group to finish in 2nd in 1:55:16. Third, fourth and fifth came to a sprint finish with Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) taking the sprint in 1:56:30, followed by Dylan McNicholas (Polartec) four seconds back and Brendan McCormack (CCB Racing) taking 5th one second back.

The women’s elite race started equally fierce and fast with Crystal Anthony (Riverside) jetting off the start line winning the sprint to the singletrack. She was followed by Elisa Otter (Bicycle Express Racing). Otter kept Anthony in sight for 2 of the 5 laps but could not match Anthony’s fitness.

Anthony went on to win in 2:09:57. Otter maintained 2nd in 2:12:41.

Karen Potter (Pivot/Epic Brewing) started slow off the line and had to make her way through the field in the opening lap but was able to make her way through and sit in 3rd for the rest of the race finishing in 2:14:40.



Elite Women

Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) 2:09:57

Elisa Otter (Bicycle Express Racing) 2:12:41

Karen Potter (Pivot/Epic Brewing) 2:14:50

Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters) 2:16:48

Joanne Grogan (1K2GO Coffee/Burris Logistics) 2:17:15


Elite Men 

Billy Melone (ATA Cycles) 1:53:32

Christopher Hamlin (Bicycle Express Racing) 1:55:16

Dan Timmerman (Riverside) 1:56:30

Dylan McNicholas (Polartec) 1:56:34

Brendan McCormack (CCB Racing) 1:56:35


Full results here: http://www.root66raceseries.com/RT66/Results.html