Soule, Bascio on Top at U.S. Adaptive XC Champs
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Saturday's sprint race kicked off the first day of ConocoPhillips U.S. Adaptive Cross Country Championships in Kincaid Park in Anchorage. Andy Soule (Pearland, TX) and Monica Bascio found themselves on top after day one.
"It was a cold one, but it was good fast snow because it's transformed snow that the race crews have really done a lot of work on, so it goes really fast," explained Head Adaptive Cross Country Coach Greg Rawlings. "It was a level playing field because everyone had good, fast snow."
Frigid temperatures mixed with perfect snow conditions proved to be the right combination for Soule winning the first of three races in Alaska. Soule edged out teammate Sean Halstead (Ephrata, WA) by three quarters of a ski length to take the top spot on the podium.
"Andy is skiing at the top of the field, the top five, and we saw that our other two guys are right with him, proving our changing of training programs since the fall and their hard work have really paid off," said Rawlings. "Based on Andy's results in Europe, we know that these guys are looking good."
With the sprint race's distance set at 700 meters, Soule adjusted his strategy to fit accordingly. The field was separated in the two major climbs with Soule coming out in the lead.
"Our sprint is only 700 meters here, so it was basically an all out fast turn over keeping the speed up the whole way," said Soule. "There are two notable climbs and it was important to climb all the way over the top and carry good speed."
Greg Mallory (Portland, OR), who won the prologue, finished a solid race closing out the top three to join fellow teammates Soule and Halstead on the podium. Australia's Dominio Monypenny came in fourth, followed by Eric Frazier (Jacksonville, NC) in fifth, rounding out the top five.
In the women's race it was all about Bascio. Bascio competed a solid race to take the win in the first of three races in Anchorage.
Spectators, as well as the athletes, have Sunday off. The U.S. Adaptive XC Championships pick back up on Monday.
"It was cool," said Rawlings. "We had a lot of spectators which is good exposure for us."
ConocoPhillips U.S. Adaptive Cross Country Championships
January 2, 2010
1. Andy Soule, Pearland, TX
2. Sean Halstead, Ephrata, WA
3. Greg Mallory, Portland, OR
4. Dominio Monypenny, Australia
5. Eric Frazier, Jacksonville, NC
1. Monica Bascio, Evergreen, CO