USA Cycling Criterium Pro National Championships: Labecki Retains Elite Women’s Title, Bassett Wins Men’s, Patrick Wins Under-23 Women’s Race

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Project Echelon Sweeps the Podium in the Elite Men’s Criterium at the 2024 USA Cycling Pro Road National Championships, Labecki retains Elite Women’s title and Patrick wins Under-23 Women’s race

CHARLESTON, West Virginia (May 17, 2024) — The 2024 USA Cycling Pro Road National Championships continued Friday evening with the Elite/U23 Women’s Criterium and the Elite Men’s Criterium. With rain forecasted for the evening, riders would not only have to battle the demands of the six corner criterium but would also have to navigate the elements.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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ELITE & UNDER-23 WOMEN’S CRITERIUM

The Elite/U23 Women’s Criterium saw 76 riders from across the nation line up to compete for the coveted Stars and Stripes jersey. Returning champion, Coryn Labecki (Tustin, Calif.; EF Education-Cannondale) was the first rider called to the line. With rain predicted to start shortly, riders had to strategically place themselves toward the front. The pack stayed together for most of the race with the occasional rider dropping off the back. Fount Cycling made several moves throughout the race. This caused the group to stay strung out, leaving Elizabeth Dixon (Chicago, Illi.; Fount Cycling Guild) room to break away. Dixon managed to stay away until the last 100-meters of the race. Labecki gave it everything she had out of the last corner to claw her way around Dixon to cross the line first. This win now makes Labecki a 74-time National Champion. When asked about this momentous win she said, “I love racing crits and I love winning… [I’m] really happy to pull off the win there. I needed a lot of patience today, and I think the rain also helped me win as well.”

Elizabeth Dixon finished the race in second, and Kendall Ryan (Ventura, Calif.; L39ION of Los Angeles) rounded out the podium in third. Chloe Patrick (Carson, Calif.; UCI CTW: Cynisca Cycling) was the first U23 rider to cross the line, followed by Mia Aseltine (Littleton, Colo.; Competitive Edge Racing) in second, and Katherine Sarkisov (North Potomac, Md.; UCI CTW: Cynisca Cycling) in third.

Many of the riders who competed tonight will be lining up on Sunday, including Labecki who knows that the course will bring an entirely new set of challenges. “Sunday is a whole different ballgame now. There’s a lot more climbing on Sunday than there is today, but obviously, you know, you take a lot of confidence from a win. [My] sprint is really strong. So, I can take that and bring it into Sunday,” said Labecki.

Elite Women’s Results:

    1. Coryn Labecki (Tustin, Calif.; EF Education-Cannondale)
    2. Elizabeth Dixon (Chicago, Illi.; Fount Cycling Guild)
    3. Kendall Ryan (Ventura, Calif.; L39ION of Los Angeles)

Under-23 Women’s Results:

    1. Chloe Patrick (Carson, Calif.; UCI CTW: Cynisca Cycling)    
    2. Mia Aseltine (Littleton, Colo.; Competitive Edge Racing)        
    3. Katherine Sarkisov (North Potomac, Md.; UCI CTW: Cynisca Cycling)

ELITE MEN’S CRITERIUM

With exactly 100 riders on the start line, tonight’s Elite Men’s Criterium was one to watch. Racers stayed together for most of the night with the occasional team sending a rider or two up the road, but it didn’t take long for Project Echelon to take complete control. As racers flew around the corners in downtown Charleston, the Echelon train was at the front almost the entire time. With just two laps remaining, the train was interrupted when the third and fourth rider on the Echelon team went down at the front, but this gave the rest of the team an opportunity to get a gap. Rolling across the line in a one-two-three train, the Project Echelon Racing team swept the podium. Stephen Bassett (Knoxville, Tenn.; Project Echelon Racing) was officially crowned champion. When asked about the team’s race tactics Bassett said, “Yeah, that was the plan [to stay out front]. Especially, I think that was the plan regardless of weather. And then with the weather, it just makes it a lot easier and safer for us to just assert position early.” Brendan Rhim (Norwich, Vt.; Project Echelon Racing) crossed the line in second, and Scott McGill (Fallston, Md.; Project Echelon Racing) rounded out the podium in third.

Results:

    1. Stephen Bassett (Knoxville, Tenn.; Project Echelon Racing)
    2. Brendan Rhim (Norwich, Vt.; Project Echelon Racing)
    3. Scott McGill (Fallston, Md.; Project Echelon Racing)
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