The legend of the Turkey Trot ‘Cross grew wings in 2014, as an already engaging course was made even more rousing with the arrival of the region’s first significant rain event in, oh, forever. Turkey Trot presented by Montrose Bike shop has been taking place at Glendale’s Verdugo Park for nine years now, making it the longest-running CX race in SoCal. There are numerous compelling reasons for this.
The Thanksgiving-themed festival atmosphere is always a draw, but what brings in the participants year after year is the venue. The SoCalCross Prestige Series staff puts the terrain here to full use, and the result is a roller-coaster ride that seems to bring out the holiday cheer in everyone. The rare addition of cool, overcast, occasionally showery skies this time around just added to the entertainment value.
Words and images by Philip Beckman/PB Creative
The 28 Elite Men who took their mid-afternoon start may not agree with that assessment. The heaviest precipitation of the day began just as they rounded the first turn, and for the next hour it never let up. The course quickly went from dry—even dusty in spots—to a slippery, tire-packing, lens-spackling test of bike handling skills.
Kyle Gritters (Rock N’ Road), Jean-Louis Bourdevaire (Blackstar) and Brent Prenzlow (Celo Pacific/Focus) all led early, with Rex Roberts (Velo Allegro), Spencer Rathkamp and Jason Siegle (SDG/Bellwether/Krema Peanut Butter) joining them to make it six strong in a break after three of seven laps.
That group was reduced dramatically during the next two laps. Bourdevaire—just returned after several weeks off with an ankle injury—and Rathkamp—one of the best technicians in these parts—were off the front, with Prenzlow chasing frantically. At the bell these soggy three were together; the crowd was on its feet.
Despite Rathkamp’s desperate attempts to slip around Bourdevaire’s wide bike and capture his first series win, the Frenchman exited the final turn in front. Rathkamp could only watch from just a wheel back as Bourdevaire celebrated. Prenzlow rolled in alone for third, followed by Gritters and Siegle. The top five finished within the same minute. The consolation prize for Rathkamp was the U23 victory, extending his series lead in that category.
Amanda Nauman (SDG/Bellwether/Krema Peanut Butter) had to contend with no such dramatics. Under dry conditions, Nauman outgunned the Elite Women’s field at the start and was never headed—as has been the case in every SoCalCross event she’s entered this season.
Young Summer Moak (Felt/K-Edge) floated in a solo second place for all four laps of this race, keeping tabs on a tussle for third between Lindsay Jones (Aloha Mountain Cyclery) and Christine Pai (Knobbe Martens Intellectual Property Law). They finished in that order, while Holly Breck (Incycle Bicycles) rounded out the podium.
1. Amanda Nauman (SDG/Bellwether/Krema)
2. Summer Moak (Felt/K-Edge)
3. Lindsay Jones (Aloha Mountain Cyclery)
4. Christine Pai (Knobbe Martens IP Law)
5. Holly Breck (Incycle Bicycles)
1. Jean-Louis Bourdevaire (Blackstar)
2. Spencer Rathkamp (H&S Bicycles)
3. Brent Prenzlow (Celo Pacific/Focus)
4. Kyle Gritters (Rock N’ Road)
5. Jason Siegle (SDG/Bellwether/Krema)
Only two events remain on the SoCalCross Prestige Series schedule, that being the Santa Cross doubleheader weekend at Pierce College in Woodland Hills, 12/13-14.
Cyclocross Schedule on SoCalCycling.com