Four-time American national cyclocross champion Jeremy Powers, who uses fi’zi:k M3B shoes and nestles aboard a fi’zi:k Aliante saddle , finished a fine second on day two of the Derby City Cup in Louisville, America.

On the Eva Bandman Park course – venue for the 2013 Cyclocross World Championships. The 2.75km circuit, with wooded and open sections on tarmac, gravel, grass and sand, featuring the Green Monster flyover, which puts tired legs and lungs to the test.

In a repeat of last week’s result at the Pan-American Championships race, Powers lost out to winner and good friend Stephen Hyde, but this time by the smallest of margins – 6 seconds – compared to last weekend’s 22.

Powers had finished eighth on day one of the Derby Cup – disappointing for the legendary 33-year-old racer – but returned to form on Sunday, much to the admiration of Hyde, who also won Saturday’s cyclo mash-up.

‘Powers was riding super well today,’ Hyde commented on Powers’ Sunday efforts. ‘I was actually nervous being out there [at the front] for so long with him riding so well. He’s a really consistent rider and, honestly, he’s been a little more ‘diesel’ than me in the past.’

That ‘diesel’ is refueling rapidly after Powers had two crashes back in September on the final day at the Trek CXC Cup, which briefly affected his form and confidence. On day two, Hyde opened it up with five laps to go but Powers showed glimpses of his true potential by heading up the second chase group. He then laid down the gauntlet by powering up to the lead group of five that included Hyde, before Hyde pushed on with three laps to go.

That could have been the signal for Powers to ease off the throttle but the fi’zi:k rider is made of stronger stuff, and held off 22-year-old Tobin Ortenblad for a superb second.