Dendel Takes Her First Victory Since Turning Pro and Schouten has First Win of the Season

1 Article and more photos on June 2, 2013 Wausau, WI. The third race on the 2013 Subaru-sponsored Wisconsin Off-Road Series (WORS) calendar was the newly renamed “Red-Eye Rendezvous” at Wausau’s Nine Mile trail system. This fast pace event is characterized by crushed red granite rolling double-track, tight single-track and a treacherous technical climb known as the Ho Chi Minh trail. The race is also a fan favorite due to its easy access for spectators to snap photos and cheer for their favorite athletes. The Belgioioso Elite Women’s race started with a series of fast open double-track lanes that challenged racers to hang with the leader. In this case, the leader was Cooper Dendel (Border Grill). Dendel, who just upgraded to pro status this spring, pushed the pace of the Cat 1 women right from the start. Andrea Matter (Gear Grinder) said “I love the technical stuff.. get me in the rocks and the mud and I’m a happy camper.” Matter, who is the wife of Brian Matter (RACC/Trek), gives credit to her husband for her single-track know-how. But even with Matter’s ability in tight trails, she was not able to catch Dendel who excelled on the fire roads. Her skills in the single-track and her speed on open roads were a winning combination for the event in Wausau. This was Cooper Dendel’s first win since turning pro. Lori Sable (Team 65? / W&S) went back and forth between in placemen, but held onto the 3rd spot on the final lap. Matter grabbed the second step of the podium .5 The Belgioioso Elite Men’s race looked like anybody’s game from the beginning. The lead group was larger than usual due to the amount of open trail for the men to regroup. The front pack included Darrin Braun (Adventure 212/Specialized), Corey Stelljes (Racc/Gear Grinder), Matt Shriver (Trek Midwest Team), Nathan Guerra (Vision Pro Cycling), Tyler Gauthier (Border Grill), Tristan Schouten (Rolf Prima Wheels) and Casey Hildebrandt (Spooky Bikes/ Twin Six). Hildebrandt’s addition to the lead pack surprised many people, even the pro racers that he was hanging with. Some think he is a kid plucked from obscurity, but his knowledge of the trails in Wausau rival anyone out there and he really showed that he could ride them as well as any pro. The tightly formed pack stayed together until the third lap where Tristan Schouten planned his attack. In previous laps he pushed the pace on the long climbs, but in the third lap decided that he would keep pushing until he broke away. Matt Shriver was not going to let Schouten take off on his own and hung on his wheel until the end. The sprint finish ended is Schouten’s favor, but Shriver had a very strong 2nd place finish coming in less than a second behind. In the final lap, Nathan Guerra also made his move to take the third spot. The next scheduled race on the WORS calendar is Jun 16, 2013 at CamRock park in Rockdale, WI. The Battle of CamRock is a blend of wide and fast flowing single-track that runs through open fields of prairie grass, wooded single-track with bermed turns, and more technical single-track with a touch of roots and rocks. The Battle of CamRock’s course contains some great downhill sections that will have you begging for another lap.   Photo of Men's finish by Melissa Kennedy Photo of Cooper Dendel by Extreme Photograpghy
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