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ROSE WINS HER 4th MARATHON
For the 4th year in a row, Rose Grant will wear the coveted Stars and Stripes jersey for another year winning the USA Cycling Marathon National Championships. Finishing in a time of 3:46:55 on her Pivot Mach 429SL and defending her title from 2016, Rose set a strong, steady pace which left only Crystal Anthony, who would go on to finish in second place, to hold on.
“The trail system [Iron Mountain in Arkadelphia, AR] was impressively built, offering amazingly fun and fast flow. Smooth bike handling was a key component to having a solid race on these trails, with limited sections to create separation in a race situation with only short punchy climbs.” – Rose
The course being primarily fast singletrack with short, punchy climbs, made bottle hydration challenging. With the humidity and heat, Rose opted to use an Osprey Syncro 3 hydration pack, mixed with Clif to help with hydration during the 3+ hour race. A mix of Hydration Mix, Clif Gels, and a Clif Organic Energy Food pouch allowed Rose to keep on top of her hydration and nutrition during the race.
Drew Esherick, of Stan’s NoTubes, made the trip to Arkansas to provide race support for Rose. He commented, “The course was really cool. Lots of flow, very fun, but not typically something she’d excel at, no long climbs. Short punchy efforts. Her and crystal had a BATTLE. crystal stuck to her with some unbelievable determination. They were away by themselves by the first feedzone. Attacked each other all day and it came down to a sprint.”
In the end, Rose’s strength, patience, and tactics had her crossing the line first.
WHAT’S NEXT FOR IN THE COMING WEEKS?
“The Epic Rides Grand Junction Off-Road is next on the calendar May 19-21, followed by a couple weeks off from racing, during which I will be gearing up for my local Pro XCT in Missoula.”