Pro Team Race Reports
World Cup Victory in Belgium for Catharine Pendrel!
Houffalize, Belgium UCI World Cup #2 (April 15, 2012) Once again, Catharine Pendrel took the elite women’s victory at the arguably most-classic World Cup venue of the season, in Houffalize, Belgium. Georgia Gould’s 12th place was the top American spot, and Katerina Nash ran a lot to 49th place after a major chain-related mechanical.
This well-attended event, in its 17th year, attracted over 10,000 spectators to the drippy Ardennes forest, and featured a completely redesigned and rugged course.
Catharine Pendrel has lead up to this event with some downhill skiing, mountain biking with her husband, and last week attended the Luna Team camp and summit in the Clif Bar hometown of Berkeley, CA. After the chilly and somewhat muddy training camp, “Kika” Pendrel stated, “I headed back home for a couple days of good training on perfect dirt to have me feeling fast for Houffalize.”
Catharine went on, “The course (in Belgium) favors an aggressive descender who doesn’t fear steep climbs.” Pendrel took the win on her custom-painted 2012 Orbea Alma hard tail (with 26 inch wheels) and commented, “I call it my fancy bike, but it doesn’t mind getting dirty at all.”
Frenchwoman Julie Bresset, who contested Catharine part of the race, took second, ahead of third place finisher Maja Wloszczowska. The two frontrunners battled fiercely, but eventually the rainbow stripe adorned LUNA pro extended her lead to a huge 48 seconds at the tape. With that successful third (out of five) lap attack, Pendrel also took the lead in the overall world cup series, tying with Wloszczowska at 410 points.
"I just felt awesome today," stated Pendrel to a reporter at Cyclingnewscom. "It was a good course, I really liked it. It felt a lot like my trails at home, and definitely had steep climbs. There was one section that I knew Julie [Bresset] was really strong on, so my focus of the race was riding that section as smooth as I can, and then just go as hard as I could on the climbs. Ten years ago, Alison Sydor won here, so it was good to finally get a Canadian win again."
To surrounding friends, Kika went on without hesitation, "Even better than that, the Belgian chocolate also tasted pretty good last night!"
Here are final top five results:
1 Catharine Pendrel 1:31:15
2 Julie Bresset (Fra) 0:00:48
3 Maja Wloszczowska (Pol) 0:01:24
4 Pauline Ferrand Prevot* (Fra) 0:01:30
5 Blaza Klemencic (Slo) 0:01:50
Georgia Gould on her way to top American
Next up for the LUNA Pro mountain bikers is the wildly popular and sometimes moist Sea Otter Classic, in Monterey, CA. Please visit us at the team booth!
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