Keegan Swenson and Lauren Stephens crowned first-ever US National Gravel Champions

Loose sand, strong winds and some negative racing made for a "mentally challenging" race.

Swenson and Stephens win inaugural Gravel National Championships in Gering, Nebraska
(Image credit: USA Cycling)

The first-ever USA Cycling Gravel National Championship was held in Gering, Nebraska, on Saturday, Sept. 9. On the line was not only the coveted Stars-and-Stripes jersey but also the largest gravel prize purse yet as well as an automatic entry into the UCI Gravel World Championships

The inaugural field drew competitive fields for the elites and amateurs alike with gravel pros like Keegan Swenson, Alexey Vermeulen, Pete Stetina, Payson McElveen, Lauren De Crescenzo and Lauren Stephens all vying for the honors and a slice of the $60,000 Elite prize purse. 

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Anne-Marije Rook
North American Editor

Cycling Weekly's North American Editor, Anne-Marije Rook is old school. She holds a degree in journalism and started out as a newspaper reporter — in print! She can even be seen bringing a pen and notepad to the press conference.

Originally from The Netherlands, she grew up a bike commuter and didn't find bike racing until her early twenties when living in Seattle, Washington. Strengthened by the many miles spent darting around Seattle's hilly streets on a steel single speed, Rook's progression in the sport was a quick one. As she competed at the elite level, her journalism career followed, and soon she became a full-time cycling journalist. She's now been a cycling journalist for 11 years.