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Winning Weekend for Jesse Swift and the Gates Carbon Drive Team

December 11, 2011

View of Lyons cyclocross course from hillside

[updated 12/12/2011]

It’s been a back-to-back cyclocross win weekend for single speeder Jesse Swift on the Gates Carbon Drive Team. Yesterday he won the E2 Cross of the North in Loveland, Colorado. He won the last of the Boulder Cyclo-cross series, race #5, today in Lyons, under a setting sun.

Single speed entrants get ready to race in Lyons, Jesse Swift center, Carlos Casali right (photo by Mary Topping)

Single speed start line, Boulder Cyclocross Series race #5 in Lyons (photo by Mary Topping)

The sunlight had already started to fade when the single speed men took off at about 4:05, just behind the senior men 3 group. According to Co-Race Director Lance Panigutti, ninteen riders registered for today’s race, a number that’s grown since the start of the series.

Most of the snow-covered course, including the start, ran along the athletic fields behind Lyons High School. One section of the course snaked along the side of a hill that rose behind the fields; here the riders’ path wove through grassy areas covered in a few inches of sugar snow.

Frost dusted sections of the course, and as the sun sank more riders slid out on some icy areas. They pedaled through plenty of muddy sections, but according to Swift, it didn’t cake up thickly on tires like the Loveland mud of yesterday’s race. The course didn’t feature any barriers.

On the first lap of the single speed race Joe Saperstein never lost sight of Swift. By lap two Saperstein had found Swift’s wheel.

Run-up in Lyons, first lap, Jesse Swift leads, followed by teammate then Joe Saperstein (photo by Mary Topping)

The announcer provided Swift with an important piece of information during his commentary half-way through the race. Saperstein’s trademark, he said, was to ride in the leader’s slipstream until the last lap when he’d overtake the leader. Saperstein lived up to his reputation; he passed Swift on the last lap just before the run-up on the hillside. On the way to the finish line Swift traded places with Saperstein in the growing darkness and rode to first place.

Jesse Swift leads Joe Saperstein on another hillside section (photo by Mary Topping)

Joe Saperstein on Jesse Swift's wheel before the steep run-up; Joe passed Jesse here on the last lap (photo by Mary Topping)

Jesse Swift wins just ahead of Joe Saperstein in Lyons

Saperstein has won two of the Boulder Cyclo-cross series races, in Valmont Park and at Interlocken. Going into today’s race Swift’s teammate Carlos Casali wore the single speed series leader’s jersey. Final results for the series were not available at the time of this story, but it’s likely that with his sixth place finish today Casali will retain the series leader’s jersey for the Gates Carbon Drive Team.

Jesse Swift, Carbon Gates Drive Team, just after winning in Lyons (photo by Mary Topping)

Listen to Jesse’s race summary and future racing plans in this post-race video.

Jesse Swift and Joe Saperstein after Boulder Cyclo-cross series race #5 (photo by Mary Topping)

Many thanks to Bob Pearce for his assistance with photos.

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