We’ve been waiting all season for a showdown between Tim Johnson and Jeremy Powers. Saturday’s UCI C1 race in Bend, Oregon provided the first true head-to-head battle between the former teammates. Last year, Powers and Johnson went toe-to-toe in a pair of brilliant battles that decided the USGP overall. With Ryan Trebon out of competition for the time being, the battle has less to do with the overall and more about one of these two riders picking up a C1 win. In the end, Powers prevailed in a sprint finish that he almost bobbled with a premature celebration. As a result of his victory, Powers sewed up the USGP overall for the second consecutive year.
Sunday’s UCI C2 race in Bend was more a battle with the course then a battle between men. In the end, Powers would once again prevail for his fifth straight victory in Bend, after a move on the penultimate lap that separated him from Jamey Driscoll. However, the real story was the chaos and all the crashes. Ben Berden took the hole shot, but crashed on the second lap. As a result Kabush took the lead and Tim Johnson crashed trying to chase him down. Danny Summerhill was the next rider to go down, allowing Driscoll to sneak by and take the lead. He would soon be joined by Powers who managed to avoid the day’s carnage.
The surprise of the weekend came from Danny Summerhill. Summerhill is a strong cross rider, but has been focusing on the road in recent years. The Garmin rider picked up a solid third place finish on Saturday and was in contention for the podium on Sunday until he crashed. Geoff Kabush, who recently found employment with Scott’s MTB team, picked up a sixth on Saturday and a third on Sunday, moving him into second overall in the series. Finally, Tim Johnson appears to be coming into form right in time for nationals and worlds. His crash on Sunday resulted in a jammed chain which cost him roughly 30 seconds. Johnson worked his way up to sixth place by day’s end.
As previously mentioned, Jeremy Powers took home his second consecutive USGP overall after rattling off five straight wins in the eight race series. Geoff Kabush and Ryan Trebon, who missed the rounds in Bend, ended up tied on points. The tiebreaker for the USGP is the most recent event, allowing Kabush to slide into second place overall.
Kingsport Cyclocross Cup (UCI C2)
Travis Livermon took a dominating victory in Kingsport, Tennesse on Saturday at the Kingsport Cup. Livermon, who won the race last year, finished almost 50 seconds over Dylan McNicolas. Adam Myerson out sprinted Ryan Knapp for third place, finishing over two minutes behind Livermon. Myerson’s battle with Knapp was made even more exciting when he got tangled up with Robert Marion (who finished fifth) and ended up wrapped in course tape.