Summerhill finishes happy 13th in U23 cyclocross World Championships
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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Summerhill finishes happy 13th in U23 cyclocross World Championships

by Bjorn Haake at 11:49 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Cyclocross, World Championships
American has to overcome flat front tire and crash

danny summerhillIt is rare that a rider is beaming after a 13th place. But Danny Summerhill did exactly that when he finished the U23 cyclocross World Championships in Germany in that position. The American was hugged amid smiles, after a hard-fought race that was better than the results sheet might let on.

Summerhill seemed on his way to repeat his previous success. "It was a great race. It reminded me a lot of 2007, when I got silver," he told VeloNation. "I was up there, sitting top three for a couple of laps." Then disaster struck for the Colorado-resident. "I flatted my front tire right next to the pit." In cyclocross, there is no going back on the course, with two pits set up on the 2.8-kilometer long circuit. "I had to go a whole half lap without a wheel."

Summerhill dropped way back, but consistently picked up rider after rider. "I was down in 30th place maybe and then I chased up to 13th," he said. Not all went smooth during his chase back towards the front part of the race. His legs were covered in mud, with a bit of blood mixed in on his left shin. "I slid out on the ice. I went a little too hard, too fast."

Summerhill was so excited to get back into the race that even the crash didn't affect his mood.  "The course suited me well. The first hill probably hurt the most." After that, it was pure joy. "The second long one [climb] was fine and everything else was fun. It was sketchy and technical but I had a good time."

Asked if he had regrets that his strong chase didn't bring him an even better result, Summerhill did not dwell on his bad luck too much. "I just have regrets that I flatted but other than that it was good. I had a great day."

Summerhill would have liked the whole winter to be like today. "My season was up and down. I didn't have as good a season as when I was a junior. It is nice to at least be able to finish on a good note."

The break won't be too long as the Garmin-Cervélo rider has a busy road season ahead of him. "I am looking forward to getting on my bike and ride in the sun," he said.


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