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Saturday, November 13, 1999 -- Morgantown
Story and photos by Don Parks
WVU Cycling Club Cyclocross Race #3

[Coverage/Recap] [Results] Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4]

Ernesto Marenchin
Beauty day for a ride in the park
The third and final race of the WVU Cycling Club fall cyclocross series was blessed again with superb late autumn weather. Cloudy skies with temperatures well into the fifties prevailed for the 10AM start on Saturday morning. This made for great biking conditions on the well groomed trails of Morgantown's White Park. The course consisted of a little over one mile of single and double track trails with plenty of twists, turns, hills and man-made barriers to keep it interesting. After a little racing, the comments were that it was a fast track and the most fun of any in the series.

Getting the first start were the Class C riders who set out to conquer 30 minutes of racing, or about 5 laps. This morning's race also included three women racers, the best turnout of females in the series.

Mandi Williams
Mandi conquers another hill
Jumping out to an early lead was 14-year-old Eric Durst. Durst continued to extend a big gap on his rivals as he went on to take first place. The battle for second had David McKain chasing Drew Hanna for most of the race, but Hanna was able to keep his advantage as he went on to take runner-up honors.

Among the women it was the young and talented Jennifer Shogren, in her first year of racing, taking the victory and finishing fourth overall in the Class C race. Also out there proving their mettle were Mandi Williams and Laurie Johnston taking home second and third place, respectively.

Class B race
No one's letting Chad get away
Next to take to the course, and this time for 45 minutes or about 9 laps, were the Class B riders. In what was the days most exciting racing, Chad Cherefko led a tight group of four through the first three laps at a tremendous pace. He couldn't shake his chasers as the next laps saw the teenage tandem of Nick Waite and Kevin Leyh pull into the front and take up the the first two spots. By the sixth lap they were leaving Cherefko behind to battle with Collin Fridley for third.

The final laps of the race saw Waite put the hammer down as he dropped Leyh on his way to the Class B win. Leyh easily held on for second. Meanwhile, after briefly dropping back to fourth, Cherefko regained some strength and passed Fridley back to capture third.

Gunnar Shogren
No stoppin' Gunnar... you can't even slow him down!
The final race of the day had the Class A field taking to the dirt for 60 minutes which meant upwards of 16 laps. Perennial West Virginia mountain biking race winner and pro rider Gunnar Shogren was in attendance and ready to prove himself once again. He quickly took up the lead position with only Marc Glass hanging on to his wheel early. After several laps Gunnar's smooth transitions out of the saddle, over the barriers, and back on the pedals were beginning to put a gap on Glass. With no mechanical problems among the leaders, Shogren, Glass and Ernesto Marenchin went on to place first, second and third, respectively, with plenty of distance between them.

Many thanks go out for the WVU Cycling team (Scott "I'm a Swimmer" Zwizanski, Steve "The Bus Driver" Gergely, Chad "Coffee Boy" Cherefko, Lief "Fluffer" Hands, and Dave "Good Guy" Steiker) for their hard work in organizing the race series. More thanks go out to the folks that helped them out, specifically, Pathfinder, BOPARC, Gergely Construction, and Wamsley Cycles. Look for more racing from the WVU Cycling team coming this spring. Rumor has it that they're planning a weekend road race for April.