Sunday, September 30, 2007

Bloomer CX

4th place today in the B-race. I'm rather dissappointed with that result for some reason, despite the fact that 4th is the best placing I've had in a 'cross race since I was 17 years old and demolishing the B's. Today I wasn't firing on all cylinders; I would attribute that to this past week's training block being the toughest of my life. Training through races can be tough mentally.

So there were only 16 of us at the start of the race today. I expect that number will increase next week at Stoney as the C race had 6,093 racers. As usual I got a good start and sat in the top 3 throughout the first 3 laps. On lap 2 or 3 I was sitting second wheel to Roger Bowser when he took a spill on the off camber turn from the tall climb by the velodrome. I managed to hold a front wheel stand for what felt like an eternity before I stumbled. Kristie and my dad (both spectating today...) said 7 people passed us right there. In addition, the eventual winner attacked and held the gap for the remainder of the race.

The following few laps saw a consistent chase group of Roger, Cory Stang, and the eventual 3rd place winner (name?). Cory had some tire pressure/traction and chain issues, Roger chased back to us and we mounted an unsuccessful chase and ended up sprinting as a strung-out group for 2nd through 4th. I guess I can't be dissappointed with 4th, considering all the elements at play today.

With focus, my training will get me where I should be. It is always tough racing when you know you shouldn't expect much. I definitely felt it a few times there today.

All the pics are from Kristie. Having a sweet cheering section helps when the legs get heavy! I was absolutely exhausted on the way home, and apparently so was Kona.

See ya at Stoney.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Just wanted to post a few comments I got in regards to the race...

"Great job putting on the race last weekend! Man...that was cool. There's something to be said for a race that you can't stop talking about......The course was great, the band was rockin' was a great atmosphere. I think I sped up everytime I got close to the band and running the stairs. The band was SUH-WEET!I hope to do it again next year. Thanks again for putting this together!"

"Huge props JB for putting on what I though was the best race atmosphere I've EVER experienced at a 'cross event in Michigan in my 10+ years...Thanks again!!"

"Three words to describe the race in Ithica today: AWESOME, AWESOME and AWESOME. Everything from the course, the band and the weather were picture perfect."

"The LIVE band "nervz end" was rocking in the "amphitheater of Pain" right next to the course pounding out classics from Mettalica, Soundgarden,Creed, AC/DC , Pantera etc through out the race. I swear my heart rate would jump 10 beats every time I had to ride near that stage. AWESOME"

"I hope this race gets bigger in years to come. The band and overall atmosphere was pretty cool....what a cross race should be, I'll be back."

"Good job with the race today. It was a really fun course and everything went really smooth, except for me not winning the alpha q fork!! The band was really good also. I hope you can host the race again next year."

"The first race I will be doing is the Ithaca Grand Prix of cyclocross. This is a new event and I am looking forward to the race. Being that it is the first race of the year it is going to hurt. I know this, and every year I look forward to this pain. I forget how much it is going to hurt, but I will be quickly reminded once on the bike."

Thanks again to everybody who came out and supported the event!

See ya.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

2007 Ithaca Grand Prix of Cyclocross - Report

2007 Ithaca Grand Prix of Cyclocross - Woodland Park

Matt Jankowiak and myself

Wow! What a great day for an event. The weather, although a bit chilly at 7:00 a.m., was a perfect fall day. Saturday was equally as nice, although a bit colder during the course preparation time.

Matt Jankowiak, Jeff Weinert, Matt Baroli, my dad, and I went to Woodland Park at 3:00 on Saturday to start setting up the course. 5 hours later we put the finishing touches on everything and were off to a pasta buffet at my house. Deb, Shannon, my buddy Sam and girlfriend Maureen, and Kristie prepared a great dinner after a long day of course preparation. We were all pretty much exhausted and we had an early start today so it was a pretty short night with every bedroom in my house full (that's a first!).

This morning I drove out to the course with a truck load of registration and course fixing materials. Let's not forget the sweet prizes from our sponsors...those made the trip too. I also brought my bike, with hopes of racing in the Elite Men's race today. That would proove fruitless as I was pretty exhausted from the busy days prior.

My buddy Darin came over to the park as we were putting up the final signage on the course, setting up registration, and setting up the concession stand. Before I knew it the 10:00 race was upon us and the band (Nervz End) was setting up.

The start of the 10:00 race saw 8 "C-men" and one junior 10-14. Unfortunately, no B-women showed, so they missed out on some sweet prizes. The 10:00 race did 3 laps on the great course that we set up. As I expected the entire race blew apart very quickly. Results are at the bottom of this page.

By the time Nervz End was playing the atmosphere of the park started to increase, with the Elite's arriving and the 11:00's warming up. Again, the 11:00 start time came quicker than I expected. Down to the starting stretch I went with my checklist, prepared for our biggest fields of the day.

Nervz End rocked throughout the day! (Tallon, Right, guitar, is 16 years old!)
The B-men started first with 11 racers. One minute back would go the combined Masters 35+ (5 racers) and 45+ (4 racers), followed by the Elite Women (4 racers) 30 seconds back. The starts were clean for all events except for the Masters categories which saw a bit of a slip up at the top of the course (sorry!!!).

The Killer B's started fast and the race was dominated by Joe Slonecki and Cory Strange...two FAST racers! Leading the masters charge were the usual suspects...Mike Seaman, Matt Baroli, Joe Brown, and Andy Klumb. Anne Schwartz killed the Elite women's field, which was spread out over 3 laps!! Results are below...

Matt Baroli and Mike Seaman charging up the sled hill

Joe Brown rollin'
The main event for the day was the Elite Men's race. Starting at 12:3o, the weather had warmed up nicely in the sunny areas. Wind was picking up from the SE which would make for a difficult back stretch. The race was fast from the gun and within a lap there was a SIGNIFICANT gap between the leaders (Wissink, Weinert, and Sarri) and the rest of the field (Budacki, Cameron, Stark). The leading trio charged around the course churning laps around 6:00. Eventually Sarri's elastic snapped and it was left to the dual "W's" to fight it out. Coming into the last staircase in front of the band it was neck and neck. Weinert took a slight lead at the top but Wissink quickly closed that gap. The charge from 200 m out would prove to be fruitless for Weinert as he popped out of his pedal at the top of the hill to the finishing straight, leaving Wissink alone by about 10 m to the finish. Needless to say, Mike, Jeff, and Tim DESTROYED the rest of the elite field (sorry, I don't have time gaps...). Any chance there'll be a top 10 in store at the UCI's for either Jeff or Mike??

Weinert, Sarri, and Wissink up the sledding hill
At the conclusion of the Elite Men's race the boy scouts plus some GREAT volunteers erased the course in about an hour. Not bad work considering all the flags and ribbon we had out there. The awards ceremony was quickly over, prizes and purses passed out, and it was time to head home to talk about successes and things we'd change.

The bottom line is that today was a great day of racing! 43 'cross die hards showed up to hone their skills pre-Davisburg. Wish we could have seen a few more but we'll get it next year. For those of you who missed it, with the band and the SWEET course it was an event to remember.

Special thanks to Robert Linden and Rick Plite for their help and support in this...and there's no chance in the world this could have been pulled off without Kristie's help and support either!

Hope to see you next year, but for now I'll see you next weekend.


Juniors 10-14
1) Addison Evon

1) Marc Dettman
2) Mark Caffyn
3) Brian Jankowski
4) Greg Johnson
5) Curt Potocki
6) Dennis Bauer
7) Ben Miller
DNF) Dominic Wieczorek

1) Joe Slonecki
2) Cory Strange
3) Tedoro Ramos
4) Patrick Russell
5) Russ Greenwood
6) Matt LaVasseur
7) Tony Wieczorch
8) Jeff Zimmerman
9) Doug Gatto
10) Scott Chapin
DNF) Tom McArdle

Masters 35+
1) Mike Seaman
2) Ray Auger
3) Bob Sisson
4) Adam Slough
5) Brian Mitchell

Masters 45+
1) Andy Klumb
2) Matt Baroli
3) Joe Brown
4) Dennis Dodson

Elite Women
1) Anne Schwartz
2) Rachel Steele
3) Lisa Meils
4) Whitney Kroll

Elite Men
1) Mike Wissink
2) Jeff Weinert
3) Tim Sarri
4) Don Cameron
5) Rich Stark
6) Joel Budacki
7) Todd Frerichs
8) Matt Ashley
9) Eric Muehl

Again, thanks to everyone who came out and helped or raced in this event!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

CX Race Update

It is finally upon us...after months of planning, finding sponsors, and just plain working my arse off, the Ithaca Grand Prix of Cyclocross is a week away!

Things are all in order now for the race. Sponsor's products have arrived, the barriers are made, food and drink for the concession stand is waiting consumption. Our pre-registrations have even increased online! I suppose (hope!) when you offer the biggest cyclocross purse in Michigan other than the UCI races, people will come. Not to mention it will be great for racers to experience a new venue.

Let's hope we get some juniors to the race!! (None are pre-registered as of Sunday morning...) If you're reading this and planning on coming, bring a junior! Had the late great Dennis Cotcamp never brought me to the 1997 cyclocross state championships, I may never have known the sweetness that is 'cross. From there we went to nationals and the Chicago Supercup together. Find a spare bike that fits, or just have them ride a mountain bike. Just bring somebody new into the sport!!

Our volunteer staff is set. The official is set. The details are set. All that is left to do is race!

Hope to see you there...