Mud, Sun or Rain, SRAM Athletes Shine in Providence
As he prepares for his biggest-ever European racing campaign, Jeremy Powers of Rapha Focus confirmed his standing as the nation’s top male cyclocross racer this weekend at the Providence Cyclocross Festival. J-Pow, as ‘cross fans know him, took a convincing victory in Saturday’s UCI Elite Men’s race race.
In fact, SRAM-supported pros swept the Elite men’s podium Saturday with Tim Johnson and Lukas Winterberg of Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com taking second and third respectively. The second by Johnson was his best result of the still-young season. On the Elite Women’s races, Rachel Lloyd of California Giant – Specialized was consistently near the front with a second place on Saturday and third Sunday with Katie Compton winning both days.
These athletes relied on SRAM’s new 1X11 Force CX1 drivetrain, which provided a smooth ride with plenty of gear options over the undulating twisty course in Providence, RI. They also each rode SRAM HydroR hydraulic disc brakes with Zipp 303 Firecrest Tubular Disc-brakes.
Over two days of racing, the Providence Cyclocross Festival challenges athletes with a wide array of course conditions, including tacky packed mud, to slick rain-soaked mud on Saturday to quickly drying conditions on Sunday.
Powers typically races with a 44-tooth Force CX1 X-SYNC™ chainring. He pairs that with an 32-11 WiFLi cassette for a wide range of gears for any terrain or situation on the ‘cross course. “If anyone needs more than that, I don’t know what to tell them,” Powers said. “That’s a huge range.” Powers years ago had tried a single-ring system because of the potential advantages and simplicity but the technology had not yet caught up with the idea, so he said he’s happy to ride a purpose-build 1X11 drivetrain for cyclocross with Force CX1. “It’s a lot more simple. That’s the main thing. It’s very quiet,” Powers said.
Powers will head to Europe for much of the season focusing on World Cup events beginning this month.
SRAM sponsored pros we’re not the only ones riding Force CX1 last weekend in Providence. Many racers across ages and racing categories are discovering the advantage of a single ring, purpose-built cyclocross drivetrain. In Providence, SRAM also held a free drawing to give away six free SRAM Force CX1 “hop-up” kits to convert any SRAM road drivetrain to 1X10 or 1X11. Watch for more coverage on SRAM News on how to “hop-up” your SRAM cyclocross.
All race photos by Wil Matthews Photography