Cyclocross

Dec. 2, 2018

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North Carolina Cyclocross #something. It’s been a wet season and today was! I decided not to warmup on the course at all, just too muddy, I brought the wrong tires, and I forgot my pre-race fuel. So as you might have guessed, I didn’t have a great day. I raced the 50+ Cat 1,2,3 and started at the back of the field, it is a very long straight field (and today muddy) start, I was about 5 from dead last at the first turn, and spent the next 45 minutes there. I did pass a couple of 40+ racers that started a minute in front of me, but for the first time was lapped by the leader, so I did one less lap, and I was fine with that!

It’s funny what you think about while racing, today I was remembering the mountain bike season start and the super muddy Tsali race and next week the cyclocross season might be ending in the snow and sleet!

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Nov. 10, 2018

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North Carolina CX #7 – NC State Championships or my second Cat 3 race.

I had a terrible start and was dead last for almost half a lap! I finally started picking racers off and worked up to 4th and closed in on 3rd… but I couldn’t find my rhythm and kept having to dap, skateboard, and generally miss every line, so I was passed by a couple of riders. I finished 6th, but 2nd over 50 racer.

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I played with off camera flash before my race.

Nov. 4, 2018

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NCCX #6 – Pinehurst…. or lots of sand!

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My first Cat 3 race: There were 9 of us, after 8 call ups, I was alone on the second row. We start and I sprint to 4th and pushing third till the run up. I fell back to 5th as I had a slow dismount/remount and hit the first up/down sand pit (above picture)

The race is longer than any cyclocross race I have done, I was racing younger guys, and I had to wait all day for my start (I went early hoping for one more Cat 4 race)

To sum it up, I am very pleased with my race, I challenged 3rd for 2 of the 6 laps, finished 1 spot off the podium, I gapped 5th on the last lap and can race with these boys!

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Oct. 28, 2018

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NCCX #6 Boonetown Throw Down

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The course was very wet. in fact in spots I was a cartoon character, turning teh cranks over, wheel spinning, but not moving forward at all. On one hill climb, I was pedalling and going backwards.

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5th second place this season, but today I was disappointed, the guy that has won every race was “cat-ed” up and no one in field has beat me this year… I got a horrible start, missed my pedal and fell to about 7th off the line. I sprinted my way and by the first time over the barriers I had a lead of about 10 yards, but as soon as we hit the real slop, a guy on a mountain bike was on my tail. We traded the lead over the first lap until I crashed on a railroad tie, and he rode away… I never caught him! I was first on a cyclocross bike!

 

Oct. 21, 2018

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Race #3 of NCCX – as you can see second again.

Race report: This week was in Davidson, another new course for me (I skipped last year) and another interesting start. I got the call up and moved way left of the previous winner to avoid being chopped again. I didn’t get a great start and missed my pedal, so my sprint was me catching up, as we closed in on the first right turn, a guy to the left of me kept squeezing over, I gave a little elbow to make sure he knew I was there, then he leaned into me, so I had to lean back…. That pissed him off and he started yelling at me. WTF! This guy is no where near the podium, why so aggressive? Anyway, I got around him and settled into second place…. halfway through the lap I see a rider miss a turn and it’s the leader… I bury myself to build a gap (why I don’t know, since he is WAY faster than me) and come to the end of lap 1 in the lead… but he passes me and third place is on my heels… my mind starts negative thoughts “maybe I can finish third this week” – wait forget that and I hammer the next flat and build a gap over third… the rest of lap 2 and 3 I continue to build my gap over third while passing riders in the field in front of me. In fact, I would have finished 4th or 5th in the field that started 1 minute in front of ours.

Again a great day racing bikes!

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Finished the day at D9 Brewing – sampling flights of sour beers!

Oct. 14, 2018

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Race #2 NCCX and the same results, same three on the podium and in the same order.

The race was at Lions Park in Raleigh and I have always liked the course, even I have have never had a good result there. This year they took away recovery dirt road on the back, made the bog hill a run up with barriers and made the lap a hair longer. I got the call up today, so I started on the front row: The start, yesterday’s winner got a good start and then did a “dick” move and cut right in front on me, but karma got him and he dropped a chain or cross chained or something…. all I know was suddenly he was moving and was right in front of me, and I had to cut hard not to pile into him.

The mechanical also meant I had the hole shot and after the first left turn I was in front before we hopped the curb into the woods. All I could think of was go, go, go… I have never been in the front of a CX field and wasn’t sure how hard to go vs “popping” – whatever I was doing was working I was building a gap and finished the first lap with over 100 yards lead. After halfway through lap 2 I saw yesterday’s winner and he was gaining, and by the next switch back he had closed the gap why faster than I expected…. I learned, he is MUCH faster than I am so I concentrated on my line and he caught and passed me before the run up, I stayed with him for a bit, but just not as fast as he is. Lap 3 was fast, third place didn’t close in on me, and I wasn’t gaining at all on first. I am still happy with my second second of the year!

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‘cross = early starts!

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The run up, last year it was ride-able, this year Tim added barriers.

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Fun stuff

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Sept. 1, 2018

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Cross is here, at least in Virginia. GoCross, a UCI weekend on a permanent course in Roanoke. The lap had a stair run up, long sand pit and flyover. My race started well, call ups were based on registration order, so I was deep in the field in about 48 place. I worked my way up to top 15 before the sand pit and was riding through it when the rider beside me fell into me, knocking me over the tape and out of the sand…. I spent the rest of the race picking off riders and being passed by 3 people on the last lap to finish 20th of 50+ starters. This was an open Cat 4 race, so I was racing 19 -99 year olds, but finished 4th among the 50+ year old riders. I was happy for my first race of the year!

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Roanoke is called the Star City of the South because of this huge star over looking the city.

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Feb. 3, 2018

(Photo by Jay Capers)

Waffles and watching the women’s World Championship Cyclocross race from Valkenburg in a language I have no hope of understanding…. American Katie Compton was leading in lap 3 but finished 2nd. Still great for USA riders to be in the front of the field. 2 more were in the top 10 – 6th Kaitlin Keough and 8th Elle Andersen