Season Preview: 2018 Vittoria Northeast Cyclocross Series presented by Clif Bar and Cycle-Smart

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PRESS RELEASE
8/7/2018

For Immediate Release
Contact:
Lauren LeClaire
Vittoria Series Media Coordinator
LaurenLeClaire@gmail.com
508-868-6301

BOSTON, Mass. (Aug. 7, 2018) - The 2018 Vittoria Northeast Cyclocross Series presented by Clif Bar returns as a UCI series for the 2018-2019 cyclocross season. Well-known for its long running history in the Northeast, the Series continues to grow with the support of returning title sponsor, Vittoria. Cyclocross fans can follow the calendar through four weekends of competition on classic courses each unique to their different parts of the region in Gloucester, MA, Northampton, MA, Suffern, NY, and Warwick, RI. Riders will race for the coveted overall Vittoria Series jersey provided by Verge Sport.

"It's been almost 20 years now since the New England Cyclocross Series torch was passed from Tom Stevens to me," noted Series President Adam Myerson, "and it feels good to see what we've been able to do in that time. With the support of Vittoria, Clif Bar, Cycle-Smart, the Series staff, and the individual organizers, I think we'll be setting the standard again this year for big events that can effectively serve riders at all levels. I'm excited about it."

A schedule change this year will impact the women's and men's elite fields. On day one of each race weekend, the elite women will take the final time slot of the day with the pro men racing just before them. On day two of competition, the race order will be reversed.

"Cycle-Smart was the first UCI organizer to provide equal prize money to women way back in 2003, and we are always looking for ways to make the sport better for women," Myerson said. We've struggled with the schedule for years in terms of the men's race always being the headliner, and love the approach Trek CX Cup has taken by putting the women as top billing. We decided to follow their lead and put the women last on Saturday while keeping the men last on Sunday. We think that approach will provide balance and should work out great."

Celebrating its 20th year, the CRAFT Sportswear Gran Prix of Gloucester presented by Ipswich Brewing will kick off the 2018 Series October 13 and 14 in scenic Stage Fort Park. "There are a lot of memories in between starting in 1999 as a 150-rider, single-day race and lining up for the 20th edition as the lead-off to the northeast UCI cross season," said Gloucester Executive and Technical Director Paul Boudreau. "We're excited to celebrate 20 years of Gloucester with our cyclocross family." Registration for the event will open Tuesday, August 8 at noon EDT on BikeReg.

This year's Verge Northampton International, on November 10 and 11, hosts one of New England's favorite races and the oldest UCI race in the US. "Even though this is the 28th edition of the race, we are always looking for ways to improve both the course and the race experience," said Race Director, Cycle-Smart's Alec Donahue. "Our kids' races run by the Northampton Cycling Club have grown to be one of our best and most popular features, aside from our famous rooty run up in Look Park."

Returning to the series for a third year is Supercross Cup, November 17 and 18, in Suffern, NY. With its "World Cup-style" venue at Rockland Community College boasting rolling hills and tricky off-cambers, Supercross tests even the most steel-nerved of racers. But what sets Supercross apart is truly its amenities, notes Race Director Myles Romanow. "We have a great relationship with the venue, a full college campus, that offers locker rooms, hot showers, and even indoor space for our kids' activities if we face inclement weather." In addition to a host of activities for young children not yet of racing age, Supercross will offer free race registration for juniors.

The Vittoria Series grand finale will be at the NBX Gran Prix of 'Cross. Goddard Memorial State Park in Warwick, Rhode Island December 1 and 2. The final chapter of the Series showcases the essence of cyclocross in New England with its twists and turns, rooty descents and the legendary long beach sections.

The Series continues to grow and push the boundaries of the development of the sport thanks to involvement from sponsors such as Vittoria. "Vittoria is excited to be back again for another season as the title sponsor of the premier Cyclocross series in North America," said Kev Avery, Vice President of Marketing and Product at Vittoria North America. "Adam Myerson has truly built something special, and we are honored to be the tire of choice! Look for the Vittoria Terreno line of clinchers and tubular tires on the podium!"

Watch the races unfold in person or by following tweets at @VittoriaSeries. Follow on facebook for race weekend highlights at facebook.com/VittoriaSeries. For more information visit http://www.necyclocross.com.

 

  Curtis White, the 2017 Elite Men's winner charges up a muddy run-up at Supercross Cup in Suffern, N.Y. Photo: Marco Quezada

Curtis White, the 2017 Elite Men's winner charges up a muddy run-up at Supercross Cup in Suffern, N.Y. Photo: Marco Quezada

  Ruby West captured the win at the NBX Gran Prix of 'Cross and the overall Vittoria Series victory in 2017. Photo: Angelica Dixon

Ruby West captured the win at the NBX Gran Prix of 'Cross and the overall Vittoria Series victory in 2017. Photo: Angelica Dixon

 

Series Calendar

CRAFT Sportswear Gran Prix of Gloucester presented by Ipswich Brewing

Stage Fort Park, Gloucester, MA

October 13-14

 

The Verge Northampton International

Look Park, Northampton, MA

November 10-11

 

Supercross Cup

Rockland Community College, Suffern, NY

November 17-18

 

NBX Gran Prix of 'Cross

Goddard Memorial Park, Warwick, RI

December 1-2

 

Series Competition Categories

Elite Men

Elite Women

U23 Men

U23 Women

Men 3

Women 3

Masters 40+ Women (Cat 1-4)

Masters 50+ Women (Cat 1-4)

Masters 40+ Men (Cat 1-4)

Masters 50+ Men (Cat 1-4)

Masters 60+ Men (Cat 1-4)

Juniors 15-18 Men

Juniors 15-18 (Cat 3) Women

Juniors 9-14 Boys

Juniors 9-14 Girls

 

About Northeast Cyclocross Series

The Northeast Cyclocross Series is a UCI level cyclocross series produced by Cycle-Smart, Inc., and is made up of four premier event weekends in the Northeast that attract national and international caliber athletes to compete for an overall leader's jersey. Both professional and amateur athletes compete throughout the fall in Gloucester, MA, Northampton, MA, Suffern, NY, and Warwick, RI.

 

About Vittoria Industries North America

Vittoria Industries Ltd. is an international group that acquired the famous premium cotton tubular tires producer Vittoria Spa in 1990. Vittoria has built highly reputable partnerships within in the cycling industry and created a distinct brand image. Today, Vittoria Industries is the world's leading manufacturer of bicycle tires with an annual production of approximately 7 million tires and 900,000 high performance tubulars and cotton tires. Its research and development center develops the best racing tires at all levels. Vittoria's worldwide commercial operations are shared among three distinct regions: Vittoria SpA is responsible for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America (EMEA & LATAM). Vittoria Industries North America, Inc., is responsible for North America. The group holding company, Vittoria Industries Ltd, carries out manufacturing and R&D at its fully owned Lion Tyres Thailand Ltd factory in Bangkok.

Weekend Preview

CRAFT SPORTSWEAR GRAN PRIX OF GLOUCESTER
KICKS OFF VITTORIA NORTHEAST CYCLOCROSS SERIES
PRESENTED BY CLIF BAR

The CRAFT Sportswear Gran Prix of Gloucester presented by Ipswich Ale Brewing returns for a 19th season and features the opening weekend of competition for the Vittoria Northeast Cyclocross Series presented by Clif Bar and Cycle-Smart. The legendary Gloucester event is a classic New England cyclocross race hosted by Essex County Velo at historic Stage Fort Park.

Elite Category 2 races, sanctioned by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), will be held both days for professional women and men. These races will provide points for USA Cycling's Professional Cyclocross Calendar (ProCX). Along with additional points earned for the Vittoria Series overall competition, winning athletes will be awarded coveted Verge leaders jerseys at the Gloucester event.

Both Men's and Women's Elite races will feature exciting racing between many of the top pros in the sport. For the men, expect to see Aspire Racing riders Jeremy Powers and Spencer Petrov at the front end of the race. A Massachusetts native, four-time U.S. national champion Powers cites Gloucester as one of his favorite events. 

"As always, I'm very excited to come back to the classic that is Gloucester again this year," said Powers. "It's always a favorite race of mine, with family and friends being able to attend. I can't help but think of racing here years ago when I lined up as a young junior rider racing with the masters and dueling with Jesse Anthony and now I'm bringing my son for the first time, so I'm very excited about that!" 

As for the racing, Powers is hoping for slick conditions. "Competition will be in full force, but that is the same as always and I hope to have a strong race and put on a good show for everyone that comes out to watch and cheer us on. It's looking like we might even have a little bit of rain in the forecast. One of my best memories was from the 2012 event held in the rain."

Starting off the season with huge victories at KMC Cross Fest and Charm City Cross, current ProCX leader and U23 National Champion Tobin Ortenblad (Santa Cruz/Donkey Label Racing) will be a favorite in the Elite Men's race. "I left home in Santa Cruz in early September for a huge block of racing which started in Rochester, then went to the midwest World Cups, and finally out here for the East Coast races," said Ortenblad, who is from Santa Cruz, Calif. "Gloucester will be my final weekend before heading home for a little break. I did it two years ago and loved the course and location. Not to mention it's a legendary venue. The weather is beautiful right now and I'm looking forward to one more weekend of racing in New England before heading home. The past couple weeks of racing have been incredible so I'm hoping to bring some of that confidence and fitness into this weekend."

Other riders to watch in the Elite Men's race will include Anthony Clark (Squid Squad), Curtis White (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com), and Jack Kisseberth (JAM/NCC). White scored back-to-back wins in Gloucester in 2016. Kisseberth is coming off of a podium performance at KMC Cross Fest and a solid seventh place finish on day 2 of Charm City Cross.

For the women, expect to see a classic New England duel between youngsters 22-year-old Ellen Noble (Aspire Racing) of Kennebunkport, Maine and 20-year-old Emma White (Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld.com) of Delanson, N.Y. These two have been racing each other at Gloucester since they were beginners. Last year, Noble took the win on day 1 of Gloucester, while White rode with consistency taking two podiums over the weekend. It could be a tactical race between the two.

Also in the fight for the podium will be French Olympian Christel Ferrier Bruneau (SAS-Macogep) and local favorite Crystal Anthony (Maxxis Shimano Pro Cyclocross) of Beverly, Mass. 

After the Vittoria Series begins in Stage Fort Park this weekend, racing will continue with the second event in Western Massachusetts with the Verge Northampton International, on Nov. 11 and 12. This race is one of New England's favorite races and the oldest UCI race in the U.S. Returning to the series for a second year is Supercross Cup, Nov. 18 and 19, in Suffern, N.Y. After a successful debut year in a new location, Supercross returns to the "World Cup-style" venue that featured rolling hills, tricky off-cambers, and clenching descents that tested even the most steely-nerved 'cross racers. The Vittoria Series grand finale will be at the NBX Gran Prix of 'Cross. Goddard Memorial State Park in Warwick, R.I. will host the final chapter on a course that is the essence of cyclocross in New England - twists and turns, rooty descents and the legendary beach sections.

 

Lauren LeClaire
NECXS Media Coordinator