Rebecca and Clara have both had amazing seasons and started in the frontline of the grid, and both took full advantage of that as the race kicked off. Rebecca got on the gas immediately made an aggressive attack. It paid off as she led Clara and Katie for the first two laps. As the two Kona riders put more time into the rest of the field Rebecca would start to fatigue on the run-ups and the Sellwood Cycles supported Clara Honsinger would make her move and never look back.
Clara is no stranger to leading CX races, in fact going into the race she was the 2018 U23 National Champion. She made the wise call to go for the Elite jersey instead of defending her U23 title. Clara would hold off an incredibly strong Rebecca and the pair would land two Kona bikes on the podium and take away the gold and silver medals.
“I focused on the “smooth is fast” mantra and focused on finding flow. It was a proper PNW course with tacky mud(is this an oxymoron?!), some pucker-worthy rutted shoots, and the essential off-camber slippery roots. The team(S&M CX) put in a lot of work through this season and it was just up to me to execute the race. ” – Clara Honsinger
“I’m really proud of my race, and couldn’t be happier that if anyone had to beat me on the day that it was Clara. It was Clearly a corse build for Kona’s!” – Rebecca Fahringer
Like Rebecca, Kerry Werner also came into the weekend with a solid season of racing behind him. Not only was the top-ranked rider of the US Pro CX series he was also Pan Am Champ and he was ready to win. With the National Champs in Kona’s Washington backyard, the crowd was going crazy for everyone, but Kerry was very clearly a crowd favorite.
With a front-row position, Kerry also attacked right off the start hooking right into the front group of four. That group of four quickly broke into two groups of two as Kerry and Gage Hecht put on a show of next-level bike handling skills and power.
But things would come undone on lap three. Still holding the race leader’s wheel, Kerry would get tangled in race tape after a bit of loose riding from Gage. The crash would send Kerry over the bars at the bottom of a very, very fast descent. On top of the crash which visibly shook Kerry, his bike got tangled in the tape and by the time he reentered the race and got up to race pace he was back in sixth place.
Kerry is a class act. Well out of touch of the gold medal he could have easily thrown in the towel, but he didn’t, he kept attacking and worked his back to in the second half of the race to finish in fourth place. Winning the hearts of fans the world over.
“Thank you PNW! Y’all threw one hell of a bike party last weekend. A bit of unfortunate luck had me scrambling to regain the front group coming into lap three but that’s the way it goes sometimes. The course was too much fun and the spectators too loud to simply throw in the towel. ” – Kerry Werner
And to cap things off an amazing weekend for Kona in Lakewood, WA at the 2019 Cross Nationals, Seattle local, Scott Funston of Team Holdfast rode an incredibly solid race that earned him the bronze medal in the U23 category aboard his Super Jake.
Kerry and Becca’s season is far from over though, following the race the hopped onboard a flight to Amsterdam for the European leg of their season which consists of no less than 20 races! Be sure to subscribe to Kerry’s YouTube channel to keep up to date with their travels!