Katie-Compton-close-up

Katie Compton and Jonathan Page are your 2013 Cyclocross National Champions. But what can we expect from them in Louisville?

Katie Compton cruised to another national championship, and Jonathan Page, too, road to another stars and stripe jersey. Two of the United States’ very best over the years have certainly stamped their names on the season, with Page riding at the top of his career while Compton seems to have found a whole new level.

With Worlds coming up at the beginning of February, Compton now turns her focus to changing a US jersey to a World Champion’s. Her World Cup series victory was perhaps the crown jewel of one of the greatest careers in American history. Her chances at Worlds, however, are dependent on a few particulars. First, Marianne Vos has returned to ‘cross with a flare. She’s dominated her WC starts. Only Compton could stay with her at the super-fast Rome course, and even in the mud she rode confidently and without too much concern for other contenders. The mud would help Compton, but it could also plant Sanne van Passen and Sanne Cant into contention as well, as the Belgian pair have proven themselves outstanding in poor conditions.

Jonathan Page is very quietly the most successful American cyclocrosser on the planet. Though he lacks the attention and glitz of Tim Johnson, Ryan Trebon and the marketing genius that is Jeremy Powers. He doesn’t come up in conversation, skipping the USGP in favor of the full World Cup, but he has consistently finished in the top fifteen and even the top ten this season. While Compton might enter the race as perhaps the second or third pick for the win, Jonathan Page is a longshot. The dark horse isn’t so far off the radar as you might think, however. In the event of a solid start and favorable conditions, Page has the savvy and smarts to make the best of any group he finds himself in late.

Here’s some great footage from the Women’s race.