Recap: Bruins, Tritons spar for podium spots at Western collegiate races

UCLA and UCSD ran the show in the third weekend of racing for the Western Collegiate Cycling Conference, coming up with wins both days and securing more points for the conference omnium.

The Bruins climbed to the top of the podium Saturday at the notoriously grueling Boulevard Road Race, which features a 22-mile loop and 1,500 feet of climbing per lap. Sunday’s lightning-fast Rock’em Shock’em Triton Grand Prix provided wins for the Tritons on their home turf.

Boulevard Road Race

A small Women’s A field combined with the Women’s Pro 1/2/3, leading the race to be determined by whoever could hold onto the Pro 1/2/3 bunch the longest.

California State University-Channel Islands’ Amy Benner ascended to the top of the podium, followed by UCSD’s Kat Ellis and University of California-Davis’ Danielle Haulman in second and third respectively.

The Men’s A category garnered a larger field than the Women, and following the long descent, the climbers quickly took control on the first lap and thinned the field.

UCLA’s Eric Bryan claimed the victory with his teammate Robert Pearce in third. Alex Bumpers of UCSD took second.

The combined group of Women’s B and C group stayed together through the descent and first half of the race. With 10 miles to go, UCLA’s Maddy Ward and UCSD’s Alexandra Reich (both Bs) broke from the group.

Ward put time into Reich up the finishing climb to secure the Bs for another Bruins win. In the chase group, Katherine Nadler broke away from the rest of the Cs to claim first for the Tritons.

With a small group, the Men’s B stayed together until the final climb where Sam Quinby sprinted to a first place finish for UC Davis.

The Men’s C and D combined group saw a pack finish with UCLA’s Alex DeRoche taking first for the Cs, and UCSD’s Jeff Dahlen taking first for the Ds.

Rock’em Shock’em Triton Grand Prix

Undoubtedly the most exciting race at the Rock’em Shock’em Triton Grand Prix, a zippy, four-corner and flat office park criterium, was the Men’s A field.

The race began with immediate attacks from UCLA and UC Davis. After 20 minutes of racing one of the repeated attacks was able to stick for the rest of the race, lapping the remainder of the field.

In the final sprint it was UCSD’s Eric Geier that rode away with the victory, followed by UC Davis’ Scott Cohen and UCLA’s Matt Ojeda in second and third.

The Women’s A race followed suit with repeated attacks throughout the race, though none of them lasted much more than a lap due to the small size of the field.

In the final lap, UCSD teammates Esther Walker and Kat Ellis were able to form a small break in the final turn to take first and second, respectively, followed shortly by Benner.

Photo: Eric Geier (UCSD) posts up for the win at the Rock’em Shock’em Triton Grand Prix.

Photo by Steve Cohen Photography: