Monday, May 31, 2010

This is a new one

Crux on CX Mag

Preview of the new 'cross race-specific bikes from Specialized on CX MAGAZINE!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


It's only been hot for a few days but I'm ready for the cool breezes and cowbells of October already.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Brighton Day 2 and Final Results

This past weekend turned out to be a great few days of bike racing.  On Saturday we took to the Torn Shirt loop for a time trial before heading onto the freshly mowed field for the short track event.  The Torn Shirt loop was short, and in only my third lap the Stumpjumper Comp 29'er rolled nicely into second place.  With only 65 seconds separating the top five in the Expert 19-29 class, I was looking forward to the short track event.

There was a distinct camp of 'cross racers present itching to roll out the 'cx rigs for an early season test.  I was no different and planned on racing the Tricross for the 7-lap short track race.  The Elites and Experts all started together, and there were more than a few mishaps on the 0.8 mile course.  I drilled it as hard as I could for the 21-minute race, just missing the selection at the back of the elite group.  I rolled into the finishing loop in first place, taking back about 15 seconds on my deficit for the series total.

Today the weather was once again great and I was prepared to take to the Murray Lake trail for the longer XC race.  Kristie joined me which was awesome.  I ended up taking one bottle hand up today from her, which was pretty key.  The Experts were slated for four laps, and they would all prove to be difficult.  Going into the race I figured I needed about 25 seconds on first place in order to take the overall stage race title.  I knew this would be difficult after leading the first lap, unable to shake the top five in the "GC".  Going into lap two I was unable to follow an attack from the race leader, and a fresh pair of legs took the opportunity to join him off the front.

Laps two and three were about equally difficult, knowing the race was leaving in front of me and I needed to defend second place at that point.  But towards the end of lap three I started to notice a few chinks in the armor of my pursuers, which I planned on exploiting in the last lap.
I dug hard going into the last lap, trying to take as much time on the gravel road parts of the course.  I tried my best to be smooth in the singletrack, but with only one lap prior to the race I was still learning the course on the last lap.  And then, with about 4 miles to go in the race, I saw the series leader going backwards up the trail!  My chasers were slightly gapped off the back, but were chasing hard.  It wasn't long before I swept him up, and just over my shoulder I could see the others closing in.  After 29.5 miles of racing, the series contenders were all back together again, with first place for the XC race up the trail!

I dug hard on a slightly downhill, fast section of trail.  I knew it would be a great place for me to put in some time, as it was the same spot that I gapped my pursuers on lap 3.  I had a pretty good gap going when, with 1.5 miles to go, my legs started cramping.  I did my best to ride through it but my right hamstring was consistently contracting hard every pedal stroke.  I relaxed a bit, stretched, and spun a slightly easier gear, fearing I'd have four guys breathing down my neck in no time.  This race couldn't end fast enough!

I saw the gravel road and rode as hard as I could over the chatter bumps.  Just before rolling up into the park, I glanced over my shoulder and saw the group leaving the woods behind me.  I crossed the line in 2nd, absolutely gassed, but hoping I took enough time to gain the series lead.
In the end I was only about four seconds shy, which frustrates me because it's only FOUR SECONDS!  But then I think about the past three races and know I couldn't have gone any harder, which I guess is a bit of a reassuring measure.  The 29'er definitely helped in making the trail a bit more forgivable, as the drops and chatter-filled descents were challenging all weekend.  It was also great to get the Tricross out yesterday.  If I could have one bike and one bike only, I'd pick the Tricross hands down.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Rust Shaker in the news

The Morning Sun did a brief article here about this year's Rust Shaker.  Now that the rust is shaken off we'll see how the rest of the race season goes!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

New 'Cross Venue

Do YOU know where Tailwind's new venue is for 2010?  Robert does...

Monday, May 03, 2010

Island Lake Demo Day

Yesterday Mike, Little Chris, and I went North from Mt. Pleasant and ventured into some seriously unpopulated areas.  60 miles later we climbed l'alpe de Mt. P and rolled back into town.  Fun ride on some new roads, to me.

This Saturday is the Island Lake Demo Day, which should be a lot of fun again as long as it doesn't rain quite so much this time around.  I'll be at the Specialized trailer helping out as needed, so stop by and say hi.