It’s been called Velcro-grass for its sticky nature. Pro rider Jonathon Page described it after the first edition in 2007 “like riding on 5 layers of carpet,” and it’s caused pain to each and every competitor who has lined up in the 11 years since. It’s the grass surface of Desert Breeze Soccer Complex, the home of Clif Bar CrossVegas. Race organizers Watts Marketing announced prominent racers who will line up in the final edition of America’s biggest cyclocross event. In 2018 the event moves north to Reno, Nevada.
Race Director Brook Watts commented, “If you’re a veteran of CrossVegas, you have to come see the final Las Vegas edition. And if you’re just discovering this wonderful event for the first time, you better come check it out in person.”
UCI Elite Men
Prominent racers in the men’s field include riders from both sides of the Atlantic. Spectators can cheer on 2012 CrossVegas winner and perennial American favorite Jeremy Powers of Aspire Racing. From the European side, the powerhouse brothers duo from the Belgian ERA-Circus team, Laurens and Diether Sweeck promise to stir things up. Laurens finished 3rd in the 2016 edition of World Cup CrossVegas, and had two podium finishes in Iowa City this past weekend – including 2nd at the World Cup and 1st in the C1 Race. and is currently ranked 4th in the world. Four-time US national champion Jonathon Page and current US U-23 Men’s Champion, Lance Haidet of the Donnelly Sports Team round out the top spots.
UCI Elite Women
Not to be outdone by the men’s multinational field, the Elite Women’s field also shines with an international presence, led by Czech racer Katerina Nash of the Clif Bar Pro Team. Nash is the event’s only 4-time winner and was winner of the 2015 edition, the first ever UCI World Cup race held in the USA. With her win at the season’s first UCI World Cup in Iowa City, she’s already in top form. But also watch out for Nash’s Clif Bar Pro Team Canadian teammate Catherine Pendrel who is coming off of a stellar World Cup MTB season. Also competing will be 2016 World’s silver medalist French racer Caroline Mani of Van Dessel/Atom Composites, and Ellen Noble of Aspire Racing, silver medalist at the 2017 World Championships in the Women’s U-23 category. And don’t rule out 2014 winner Meredith Miller of Rapha/Canyon, who is emerging from retirement to line up “for fun” as she describes it.
Race Director Brook Watts commented, “It’s a bittersweet year for CrossVegas. We’ve planted deep roots in the park and it’s not easy to move on.”
Meet the Pro at The Double Barrel Roadhouse located “Strip-side” Plaza at The Monte Carlo Resort and Casino from 6:00 – 8:00 pm on Tuesday September 19. It’s a chance to meet some pros, get an autographed poster and enjoy a cold beer.
Racing start Wednesday at 3:30 pm with the USA Cycling Amateur Race for both men and women. The E-Bike Challenge presented by Focus Bicycle follows at 5:00 pm. At 6:30 pm, the bicycle industry race, The Wheelers & Dealers Race presented by Kask Helmets starts. The marquee events of the evening, the UCI Elite Women and UCI Elite Men start at 8:20 pm and 9:30 pm, respectively.