Bishop, Compton win short-track mountain bike titles
Jeremiah Bishop of Harrisonburg, Va., who is headed to the Beijing Olympics, brought home his second national title in the month of July, winning the pro men’s short-track contest today, the final day of competition at the USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championship in West Dover, Vt.
In the women's short-track event, Katie Compton of Colorado Springs, Colo., was the winner. Adam Craig of Bend, Ore., won the super-D competition, while Gerritt Beytagh of Fletcher, N.C., and Melissa Buhl of Chandler, Ariz., won the men’s and women’s downhill, respectively.
"It's always been one of my goals to be a rounded, complete rider," Bishop said on the USA Cycling website. "I’d prefer to win a cross-country title, but this is a close second."
At the start of the men's short-track event, then-reigning champion Ryan Trebon of Ventura set the pace but eventually was overtaken after his breakaway companion, 2008 Olympian Todd Wells of Durango, Colo., suffered a flat. Those overtaking Trebon included Bishop and fellow Olympians Adam Craig of Bend, Ore., and Jeremy Horban-Koebelski of Boulder, Colo.
Bishop managed to hold off a surging Barry Wicks of Santa Cruz to take home his first short-track national title with a time of 24 minutes 16 seconds. Wicks was eight seconds behind that.
In the pro women’s short-track contest, Compton got off to a great start and not even 2008 Olympian Mary McConneloug (Saturday's cross-country champion) could close the gap. Compton won in 26:15 while McConneloug, Saturday’s cross-country national champion, finished 34 seconds later.
-- Debbie Goffa
Photo: Jeremiah Bishop, center, exults after winning the short-track title. Credit: Michael Piniewski, courtesy USA Cycling