ECCC Week 6: Women’s A

By John Herrick (UVM Cycling)

Amidst Amish horse carriages and summer-like weather, the woman’s field raced a criterium and mass-start hill climb on Saturday, April 6 and a road race on Sunday, April 7 in Shippensburg, PA.

The Campus Criterium

Rugile Kaladyte, Rochester Institute of Technology, jumped the woman’s field in the final corner of the University of Shippensburg’s Campus Criterium, coming in first place.

Rugile Kaladyte, Rochester Institute of Technology, Carren Stika, Pennsylvania State University, and Elspeth Huyett, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania sprinting for the finish. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

Rugile Kaladyte, Rochester Institute of Technology, Carren Stika, Pennsylvania State University, and Elspeth Huyett, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania sprinting for the finish. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

The woman raced for 50 minutes on a 0.7 mile, two corner course that passed through Shippensburg’s campus on Saturday. The course had a tight corner before a quick ascent to the finish line.

Rose Long, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, took the first prime lap with 15 laps to go. Long continued to gather sprint points, finishing first in three of the four sprint laps, which were largely contested between her, Hayley Wickstrom, University of Pittsburgh, Leslie Lupien, Dartmouth College, and Jasmine Hansen, U.S. Military Academy.

Rose Long, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, taking a sprint lap. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

Rose Long, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, taking a sprint lap. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

With one lap remaining, Emily Paxson, University of Vermont, attacked the finishing roller, but later went down in a crash at the bottom last corner. Wickstrom also went down in the same crash, about ten riders back from the front.The sprint was then between Kaladyte, Carren Stika, Pennsylvania State University, and Elspeth Huyett, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. Kaladyte, who had been inconspicuous the entire race, swung up the right side of the field for the win, closely followed by Stika in second and Huyett in third.

South Mountain Hill Climb

Later that afternoon, Rose Long won the South Mountain Hill Climb by nine seconds.

The South Mountain climb, also know as the Big Flat, is a steady, seven-mile climb with a few steep sections and a flat finish. The race started with 15 riders, but was narrowed down to seven before the climb’s last kicker. Rose Long, Leslie Lupien, Emily Paxson, Hayley Wickstrom. Michelle Khare, Dartmouth College, Mariana Brown, Yale University, and Jasmine Hanson, approached the final steep section together.

Before the climb leveled out, Long attacked group and rode solo until the finish for first place.

Wickstrom and Lupien opened up an early sprint. Lupien held off the group for second, followed by Paxson who finished in third place.

Horse Kill Road Race

Once again, Rose Long proved that not even Shippensburg’s fastest Amish horse-drawn buggy could match her uphill speed when she won Sunday’s race.

Sunday’s Horse Killer Road Race was a rolling, 54-mile course with one steep, stair-stepping climb followed by an immediate decent before a flat, windy stretch to the finish. Going into the final lap, a group of five began the day’s climb together. The riders included Long, Hansen, Paxson, Wickstrom, Lupien, and Michelle Khare.

Rose Long, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, followed by Hayley Wickstrom, University of Pittsburgh, up the Horse Kill Road climb. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

Rose Long, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, followed by Hayley Wickstrom, University of Pittsburgh, up the Horse Kill Road climb. Photo: Jan Valerie Polk.

Long attacked on the second of the climb’s three steps with Paxson on her wheel. However, Long crested the climb alone. She then braved the windy stretch until the finish, taking first place. Paxson and Hansen chased less than a minute behind for the remainder of the race. 

Within the final kilometer, Paxson opened up a sprint with 200 meters remaining. However, Hansen came around her for second place. Paxson finished third place, more than a minute in front of the field.