BIG BEAR LAKE, Calif. – Senior Veronica Laughton captured her second consecutive and third overall national championship in the dual slalom to highlight day two of the USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships for the Lees-McRae College cycling programs. At the end of day two, the Bobcats are in third place in the team omnium.
The day began with qualifying for the downhill races that will take place on Sunday. Before she won her national championship in the dual slalom, Laughton finished first in the downhill with her teammate Maria Doering not far behind finishing fifth. As for the men's qualifying, David and Jake Kahn led the way for the Bobcats with David placing eighth and Jake finishing 11th.
The short track races followed the qualifying for the downhill. Andrew Sparks led the way in the men's race finishing 13th with teammates Nick Sdrenka (21st), Liam Flanagan (25th) and Brendan Bengston (30th) finishing in the upper half of the 72-rider field as well. As for the women's race, Doering led the way finishing eighth with Madysen Rails not far behind placing 12th.
In the dual slalom, Laughton obviously led the way for the Bobcats. The California native's win in the event is the 59th national championship in the history of the cycling program and the third for her as an individual.
"We are thrilled to see Veronica deliver on another national title for the team," said LMC Head Coach Tim Hall. "She was flawless throughout the race against outstanding competition from Lindsey-Wilson, Colorado Mesa and Marian. She has the ability to turn it up a notch when it's all on the line."
At the conclusion of day two, the Bobcats sit in third place in the team omnium standings. Lees-McRae, which has 368 points, is 10 points ahead of Brevard and only trail Colorado Mesa (450 points) and Fort Lewis (432 points) heading into the final day.
"Our goal now is to finish off the final day strong and hold on to third place in team omnium," said Hall. "Our downhill seeding success gives us a lot of confidence on Sunday, and our team relay squad has been solid all season."
The Bobcats will wrap up their trip to California on Sunday with the downhill races and the team relay events.