by Trish Albert/Southeastern Cycling
Elks Aidmore is always a favorite stop in the Georgia Cross Series. The course always has a good elevation change, a few roots, a great hilltop heckling spot, and other challenges. Rain several days before the race left the course with hero dirt—that perfect set of conditions. Race day was mostly cloudy but dry.
Ten Elite Women lined up for the first race of the year. Mackenzie Myatt (Team United Healthcare Georgia/706P), Judah Sencenbaugh (Team United Healthcare Georgia/706P), and Molly Russell (Loose Nuts) took off with Judah getting the holeshot. Judah sat in the lead for the first lap. Going over the barriers, Mackenzie took the lead from Judah. Her lead would hover between 5 and 10 seconds for the rest of the race. Mackenzie took the win with Judah in second and Molly coming in a very strong third.
A field of 21 Elite Men kicked off the season at Elks. For the first few laps the men were acting like it was the Tucker Ride instead of a race. About 7 were together until about 3 laps into the race. Nick VanWinkle (Specialized-BMW), Artur Sagat (Team United Healthcare Georgia/706P), Elliot Baring (Baring Performance Management) broke away. The small group behind them chased to no avail. Nick took the win over Artur with a bike throw at the finish line. Elliot rolled in for third a few seconds behind them.