Cameron, Brubaker win Kruger’s Kermesse Farm Crit
SAUVIE ISLAND — The Kruger’s Kermesse Farm Criterium bid a dusty welcome to Oregon’s cyclocross season Sunday at this U-pick farm on Sauvie Island northwest of Portland. Molly Cameron took the win in the Men’s A event after soloing the last half of the race in front of last year’s Cross Crusade winner Sean Babcock (Team S&M) and River City Bicycles’ Ian Brown. Speedvagen’s Tina Brubaker took the Women’s A win alone ahead of River City Bicycles’ Amy Campbell and Brigette Brown.
The nearly 2 km dirt course had no barriers or run-ups but featured plenty of finely ground dust, especially on the backside near the cornfields and farmhouses. Traversing hard-packed farm roads and some lesser-traveled paths, most riders chose ‘cross bikes for the day.
River City Bicycles’ Davey Yeater animated the men’s race early with a burst from the line that strung out the pack and started making an immediate selection. Aaron Olson, who got his road racing start in Oregon before riding in Europe with T-Mobile and Saunier-Duvall and then coming back to the states with Bissell and Colavita/Sutter Home, made the move to bring back Yeater. Cameron was the only rider able to eventually get on his wheel.
With Yeater dispatched and spit out the back of the chasing groups as well, Olson and Cameron powered on until Olson met with some untimely luck and apparently flatted, leaving Cameron alone at the front to press home the advantage the pair had worked for.
“Aaron brought Davy back, and then that was the race after that,” Cameron said. “Aaron had a gap and I got up to it. I saw Ian and Sean back there behind me and I was just totally cross-eyed. I mean I was just lucky that Aaron flatted or he would have put the screws to me today, for sure. It was a fast road race there, you know.”
With Brown and Babcock trading off powering the chase, Cameron kept the pace high and maintained a fairly consistent 15- to 20-second gap by riding the hard section hard and trying to recover whenever possible.
“There’s like 50 feet of elevation, and I was making a point of hitting it as hard as I could on that part,” Cameron said. “Then there’s a downhill section where you can kind of recover. I was going as hard as I could, I mean all out, then I’d get to the top and catch my breath for a couple seconds.”
It was a strategy that paid off for Cameron, who crossed the line alone ahead of Babcock in second and then Brown trailing in for third.
BRUBAKER CONQUERS CLOUDS FOR WOMEN’S WIN
In the Women’s A race, Speedvagen’s Tina Brubaker joined River City Bicycles’ Amy Campbell and Brigette Brown on the front as the trio circled the hard-packed roads around the pumpkin and melon fields that dotted the first three-fourths of the course. The riders hung tight together for the first half of the race until Brown got hung up in traffic from fields that had started minutes before the women.
“There was a guy that Brigette couldn’t get around in the last corner and we kind of gapped her off a little bit,” Brubaker said.
From that point on, it was a battle of two accomplished road criterium riders; Brubaker most recently wining the Ironclad Hillsboro Criterium and Campbell finishing second at the Vancouver and Franz Bakery criteriums.
“We had a good one-two going,” Brubaker said. “It was a tough battle. It’s a really hard and fast course.”
But the battle was cut short in the closing laps by mechanicals. First Brubaker broke her front derailleur, then Campbell suffered a more catastrophic dropped chain when a piece of metal lodged in her drivetrain. Campbell removed the debris and replaced the chain, but the delay gave Brubaker enough of an advantage to solo the last three laps for the win.
“I looked up and saw that she had just dropped her chain,” Brubaker said, “but then I saw her get off her bike and I was like, “Alright, I just gotta keep riding.’”
Campbell was back in the race quickly enough to hold onto her second-place spot, with Brown crossing the line next for third.
Check out the PHOTO GALLERY for this race.
Kruger’s Kermesse Farm Crit
Sunday, Aug. 29
1. Molly Cameron (Portland Bicycle Studio)
2. Sean Babcock (Team S&M)
3. Ian Brown (River City Bicycles)
1. Tina Brubaker (Speedvagen)
2. Amy Campbell (River City Bicycles)
3. Brigette Brown (River City Bicycles)
MORE PHOTOS HERE: http://cyclingaction.exposuremanager.com/g/2010_cyclo-cross_photos