Friday, November 26, 2010

Jingle Cross Rock Friday Night

Ended up taking 11th in the Cat 2 field!  Course was absolutely a beast - without question Mt. Krumpet was the hardest hill / downhill I've ever raced on.  During my pre-ride I wasn't able to ride the switchback downhill completely in all four of my mid-afternoon laps.  The frozen tundra of Iowa City was getting more and more torn up with each passing rider.  The fall line was scary - if your front tire didn't grip around the turn you were got a great face full of snow fencing followed by a nice roll down the hill.  Even swapping to the green Michelin Muds was not much of a help earlier in the day, and I wasn't able to get on the course between the races before the 2/3's due to the early call-up.

So the entire family came out to freeze in the wind - swept county park.  I started on the front row due to a super quick trigger finger at 1:00 a.m. back in September.  It was great hitting Mt. Krumpet in the top 5 to avoid what was never ending carnage.  After never successfully descending Krumpet during my warmup I hit the hill with a full head of steam on the first lap.  Fortunately I picked a good line for each of five laps and never faulted.  I may not have been the fastest heading down the hill but I stayed on my bike, which was worth a lot.  I waited around for results but after an hour they were not in sight and I was hungry for leftovers.  Ended out nearly missing out on a top 10 but snagged 11th, which I was very happy with.

Here are a few pics and a video from today.
After dropping down the sketchiest downhill I've ever tackled on a 'cross bike you were treated with a quick double barrier set and a quick trip back up.

A view from Mt. Krumpet looking over the infield

The whole family braved the cold - here is the post-race shot

A view up Mt. Krumpet.  We started from the top left and took the switch back down off to the right.  Off camber the entire way and slick like ice.  Lots of big crashes...
To give you an idea on how insane Mt. Krumpet was - here is a video posted on Cyclocross Magazine's report of Day 1:


Racing tonight at 5:30 local time...course is frozen pretty solid and one of the downhills is very, very sketchy.  Pre-ride through one of the barns:

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Jingle Cross Rock

From the race promoters:

"The Grinch has awoken! He is staring down from atop Mt. Krumpit at the course construction.

And onto Iowa City, the world on cross bikes decended.
And it upset the Grinch, he was most certainly offended.
And he stood their puzzling and puzzling until his puzzler was sore.
"If these Who's ride my Mountain, I'll settle the score!"
The Grinch winced and frowned.
"who dares to race me, "he exclaimed," who will throw down!"
As the hour drew near, and the time ticked on the clock.
"I'll show YOU the meaning of cyclocross," said the Grinch, "Welcome to the Jingle Cross Rock!"

(sent on behalf of the Grinch)"

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Bloomer Park

Fun race course today - Bloomer always keeps you on your toes!  Long debate on whether or not to race today - finally decided it would be worth the trip since there are so few races left in the season.  Mike and I threw our stuff in the truck and headed down.  It was WAY colder in Alma than it was when we arrived at the park.  But Bloomer never disappoints and it was a really fun course today.

My race started alright and I was able to maintain pretty consistent lap times throughout the race, which is definitely an improvement from the early season races.  Ended up in a group with Patrick Russell and Pete Thompson, and we rode around the park together for the better part of 45 minutes or so.  Andy Weir remained just out of touch and despite pushing it deep into the red zone we weren't ever able to claw back more than a few seconds from him.

The race came down to the final lap and Pete put up quite a fight.  Every section of the course I hoped to gain a bit of time on Pete wouldn't give an inch.  Going into the final set of barriers I figured it would come to a sprint but Bloomer isn't exactly very sprint friendly.  Even so, Pete had great positioning going into the final dirt section before the shelter and he was able to hold me off.  After the two were relegated for an after-race tiff I ended up 13th out of 23 starters.  23 starters in the second-to-last Tailwind Elite race of the season?  WOW.

Next up - Jingle Cross!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Stoney Creek 'cx

10th in the A's at Stoney Creek - I'm pretty sure that is the first time I've ever cracked into the top ten of an elite Tailwind event.  Maybe once when I was a junior, but definitely not since I started racing again.  Last week I broke my rear shifter and its replacement has not yet arrived.  I showed up to Stoney with my 29'er and the Singlecross, figuring one of those would suffice on the day.  Well apparently I'm still having some shifting issues with the 29'er and the SS was not going to be my best option.  Thankfully Wayne let me slap my seatpost on his 56cm CruX Carbon and off I went.  Surprisingly the 56 didn't fit nearly as bad as I thought it would - I noticed the skinny 42 cm handlebars more than the lack of stretch in the TT.  Regardless, it pretty much saved the day because my SS would have made for a long 60 minutes.

The start was pretty clean and I settled into the group of guys that I would usually be around.  But this time within two laps I was up with Rich Stark, and I never manage to hang around with him too terribly long.  Tim Saari was floating around back with us but after a lap or two Tim started to spring and Rich started to fade.  Long story short, the last six laps I spent pretty much alone between two groups of pretty strong racers.

Danny Gerow and Adam York got tangled up in one of the post-road turns, giving me a carrot for the last lap.  But at that point I was pretty cooked trying not to let Andy Weir catch me so my chase was not the strongest.

Big hand goes out to Jay, who had an awesome race to snag 2nd on the day!

Next up may or may not be Bloomer - it depends on how much I feel like driving since we'll be heading shortly after to Jingle Cross!

Sunday, November 07, 2010


Too bad the attendance for Icecross today was not very good.  Weather was fantastic and the course was unique, to say the least.  Laps were in the 3:30 range!  Technical like no other course I've ridden.  The course started with a short straightaway followed by a banked, fast, off camber turn.  A bit more fast trail connected to a small section of singletrack before the triple barriers.  After winding through a few camp sites the course headed across the covered bridge into the skills park.  The sand played havoc all day in that section but was a blast to ride.  Too bad I threw myself on the ground on the last lap.  During the fall I drilled my shin on my front TRP's so hard that I undid the straddle cable.  Also, since I drove the bike into a hilly sand pile, my brake lever snapped off.  Stoney might be a day on the 29'er or I might just ride the Singlecross...

Jason Loetz took the win.  I slotted in 2nd, followed by Osgood and Seaman.  
Mike rolled well today after a solid effort on Saturday
John sweated out last night's party
Front shifter still working at this point exiting the skills section
Ahh...refreshing...  Man, I love Icecross.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

National SS Championship?

Singlespeed Championship

For all of you singlespeed racers, there’s some big possible news on the horizon that will have a serious consequence on your National Championship plans...  Read the rest HERE!