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: