By: Kelly Fox (USA Cycling)
Madigan Munro (Boulder, Colo.; Boulder Junior Cycling) went down in history today after earning a bronze medal behind the Dutch pair of Anrooij and Pieterse at the inaugural UCI Junior Women’s Cyclocross World Championships.
The race started out with U.S. rider and eventual eighth place finisher Lizzy Gunsalus heading towards the front with Munro and Cassidy Hickey also in the top 10. By the second half of the first lap, the two Dutch riders were off the front while about five riders, including Gunsalus and Munro battled for the final podium spot. As they approached the back side of the course featuring several run-ups, Munro made her move passing a French rider. Though they battled for about one lap, Munro pulled ahead and extended her gap 25 seconds ahead of eventual 4th place finisher Millie Couzens of British Cycling.
“It’s all still a bit surreal,” said Munro, “I was really excited coming into the race so, I’m proud of my result and excited for more. It was definitely a tough course, it took a lot of attrition and endurance to get through all laps strongly, but it was really challenging and a really fun day.”
“I’m extremely proud of all the riders who lined up today. What Maddie was able to accomplish is really impressive. We came into today with high hopes and these athletes have exceeded them,” said Jesse Anthony, Cyclocross Manager for USA Cycling. “Cyclocross in the U.S. is really becoming something special. There are development programs throughout the country who are mentoring and producing phenomenal riders and it’s really exciting to see. To have two juniors from different parts of the country and two different development programs both place in the top ten today is a testament to the work that is being done locally by people who truly care about the sport. We are just grateful to be able to partner with them and give these talented athletes even more opportunities to develop.”
Racing continued with the U23 Men’s race where reigning National Champion Eric Brunner (Boulder, Colo.; Blue Stages Cycling) was the first U.S. rider to cross the finish line in 13th followed closely by Gage Hecht (Parker, Colo.; Aevolo/Donnelly) in 16th.
The final race of the day was the Elite Women’s Race where Katie Compton (Colorado Springs, Colo.; KFC Racing/Trek/Knight Composites), Clara Honsinger (Portland, Ore. Team S&M) and Rebecca Fahringer (Concord, N.H.; Kona/Maxxis/Shimano) took the start line. Three Dutch riders quickly went off the front as a group of five riders, including Compton chased. Throughout the course, the three Dutch continued to lengthen their gap, Compton broke away from the rest of the group to settle securely into fourth place in her 15th Elite World Championship race. Fahringer, who got caught up in some early race crashes managed to come back strong and earned 13th place, bettering her 16th place finish from 2019. Honsinger’s race unfortunately ended before it even started as another rider’s pedal went into her front wheel.
Racing continues tomorrow starting with the Junior Men at 11am local time, followed by the U23 Women and concluding with the Elite Men.
The Team USA roster is as follows:
Magnus Sheffield (Pittford, N.Y.; Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld)
Andrew Strohmeyer (Mount Airy, Md.; CXHairs Devo)
Nick Carter (Minneapolis, Minn.; KCCX)
Jared Scott (Boulder, Colo.; Boulder Junior Cycling)
Katie Clouse (Park City, Utah; Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld)
Hannah Arensman (Brevard, N.C.; J.A. King)
Shannon Mallory (Bellingham, Wash.; Northwest Women’s CX Project)
Kerry Werner (Advance, N.C.; Kona/Maxxis/Shimano)
Stephen Hyde (East Hampton, Mass.; Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld)
Curtis White (Delanson, N.Y.; Cannondale/Cyclocrossworld)
For more about the 2020 UCI Cyclocross World Championships, please visit the event website at: https://dubendorf2020.ch/en/