Johnson, Dombroski take Southampton Day 1
Tim Johnson (Cannondale-cyclocrossworld.com) leads a team sweep and Amy Dombroski (SRAM-Primus Mootry) takes the women's race.
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By Fred Dreier
Tim Johnson and his Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld.com teammates Jeremy Powers and Jamey Driscoll made winning appear easy at Saturday’s Whitmore Landscaping Super Cross Cup, held at Southampton Youth Services Park. The three men in green swept the podium of the UCI C2 race, which is the ninth round of the 2009 North American Cyclocross Trophy (NACT) series.
Johnson, Powers and Driscoll overpowered Kona-FSA’s Ryan Trebon, who had to settle for fourth place.
“It was fun out there — the course was super fast,” said Johnson, who won his fifth round of the 2009 USGP. “Ryan has always been our number one threat. He crushed it last weekend so we obviously knew he was going to be a factor.”
From the gun Johnson and Powers sprung to the front of the race alongside Trebon, the Giant duo of Carl Decker and Adam Craig, Josh Dillon (RGM-Richard Sachs) and Chris Jones (Champion Systems). The Kona rider took a few early surges to try and break free, but with the long, fast course having no mud and only one barrier section, the group stayed together.
“Ryan was whacking us over and over again — he was ripping fast,” Johnson said. “Then Jeremy and I took turns attacking but nothing would stick.”
The day’s pivotal moment came at the course’s midpoint when Trebon bobbled a corner on the climb and then lost his chain. Powers and Johnson sped off, leaving the Kona rider to fix his bike.
Johnson eventually distanced himself from his companion, taking home the victory. A resurgent Driscoll then moved back up to Trebon. The two battled for the final spot on the podium, with Driscoll taking it in the final meters.
With the win, Johnson snagged enough points to earn the series title — his first on the NACT.
Amy Dombroski (SRAM-Primus Mootry) grabbed the biggest win of her 2009 cyclocross campaign, winning the women’s race after battling with Kelli Emmett (Giant). The pint-sized Dombroski earned her victory one weekend after grabbing second at the U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross in Treton, New Jersey. Emmett grabbed second with a resurgent Georgia Gould rounding out the podium.
Dombroski sprung to the front of the women’s race alongside Maureen Bruno Roy (MM Racing-Seven), Mary McConneloug (Kenda-Seven-NoTubes) and Laura Van Gilder (C3 Sollay). After a lap Dombroski attacked the leading group and earned an early gap — but the Sram rider said she saw a surging Emmett closing on her.
“I sat up a bit because I thought I’d recover a bit on her wheel and then attack again,” Dombroski said. “I knew I had some matches left.”
But instead of setting the pace, Emmett attacked. Dombroski chased after the Giant rider, and put in a dig of her own.
But Emmett proved difficult for Dombroski to shake, clawing back to the Sram rider’s wheel after each acceleration. On the last lap Dombroski finally put in her winning dig, gaining eight seconds after surging up the course’s largest hill.
“Kelli was riding wicked strong,” Dombroski said.
The victory is a major step forward for Dombroski, who in 2008 nearly won the NACT overall after taking victories in Gloucester. Dombroski has finished second twice on the USGP this season. She’s struggled in Saturday races, often posting her better result after having a day of racing in her legs.
“It seems like everything has been a cluster for my Saturday races — my legs have no snap or something goes wrong,” Dombroski said. “I did some harder openers on Friday and I think that helped.”
Finishing sixth was Canadian Natasha Elliott (Louis Garneau), who secured the series title.