BEAVER, Utah, (July 9, 2022) – The Crusher in the Tushar presented by The Creamery, welcomed a field of approximately 800 riders representing 37 states and eight countries to Utah’s Tushar Mountains outside of Beaver, Utah on Saturday, July 9.
In the pro women’s race, Haley Smith and Sophia Gomez Villafane took an early lead, but there were multiple changes of the lead with Ruth Winder and Sarah Sturm also featuring in the lead group. Smith was the first woman to reach the top of the Col d’Crush QOM point. Smith went on to take victory eight minutes ahead of second place finisher Emma Grant.
“I didn’t know what I was going to be capable of, but I felt confident I could give it a good run,” said Haley Smith, the women’s first place finisher of Crusher. After being asked about how she felt at the finish line she continued, “It's a hard day to plan for nutrition, I didn’t want a hydration pack because of the heat so I only had two bottles and had to ration my water and at the end I think I was at my max effort with nothing else in the tank.”
In the pro men’s race, Keegan Swenson and Howard Grotts escaped off the front early on, chased by Cole Paton. Swenson was solo by the time the course reached Circleville, and he also reached the KOM point at the top of Col d’Crush in the lead. Swenson crossed the finish line first with a massive winning margin of more than 11 minutes, setting a new course record. The action didn’t stop there as Cole Paton, Griffin Easter and Peter Steina were in a sprint to the end for second through fourth place.
When asked about riding solo during a majority of the race, Keegan Swenson says, “It was nice, I don’t mind racing alone, you get to ride at your own pace.” The men’s leader in the Life Time Grand Prix series presented by Mazda continues, “this one felt good, in my home state and I think the course suits me well. As I’m getting excited for Leadville, this is definitely a good training race and pretty comparable to the climbing.”
- Haley Smith, of Uxbridge, Canada with a time of 4:56:23
- Emma Grant, 30, of Boulder, Colo. with a time of 5:05:02
- Sarah Sturm, 32, of Durango, Colo. with a time of 5:05:42
- Keegan Swenson, 28, of Heber City, Utah with a time of 4:02:24
- Cole Paton, 24, of Durango, Colo. with a time of 4:13:53
- Griffin Easter, 30, of Park City, Utah with a time of 4:13:59
- Rach McBride, 44, of Vancouver, Canada with a time of 5:20:40
Full race results can be found here.