North Carolina Cyclocross

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. 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!

Dec. 17, 2017

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North Carolina Cyclocross race #13 in Southern Pines. I always have a good day on the sandy course behind Sandhills Community College and today was no different. I got a call up, so I got to start on the front row and battled in the top 10 early. Each lap there was 5 spots I had to get off the bike, a couple of them just pure evil. I held on for 10th!

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After my race, I joined Clay, Kay and Jeff for a nearly 3 hour road ride…. when we got back, I played with panning before helping break down the course!

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Thanks to Clay for this picture of me racing and cheering me on!

Dec. 10, 2017

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Sunday’s race, same 8:30 start. All those muddy tracks from yesterday are now frozen. It was down to 19 degrees overnight (Glad I have good sleeping bags!) and I couldn’t even ride the course on my warmup. I even considered not racing….. for a second.

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Again I had an easy start (read I was not aggressive) and it took awhile to get around less technical riders, but making a new track just off the edge of the frozen ones worked, the up/down/up/down whoops were still not ride-able. But I finished a touch better today, up to 12th.

Click to Watch a GoPro Video of my Lap

Dec. 9, 2017

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Up early for the 8:30am start. I slept great in the Flippac, despite the cold and snow all night.

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Frame grab from the GoPro on my body from one of my many falls.

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Carry the bike.

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My race was just OK< it was fun, but since I have not been racing, I didn’t have an aggressive start and ended up behind folks who couldn’t ride stuff I could.

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I finally settled into my on the bike, off the bike, carry the bike, push the bike, repeat. There was so much snow and we were the first to race, I was pulled after only 1 lap or almost 30 minutes. Finished 17th.

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As the day went on, a race groove was formed and then became a mud track.

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The moment you regret making your racing kit white!

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Save the bike!

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I am not sure what was worse? Deep snow or mud….

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If you fall, at least make a snow angle a heckler yelled and she did it!

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Nov. 13, 2016

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Back to ‘cross. The season is half over and this was only my 3rd race. The first two showed I had no speed, but today was better. I love the course at Salisbury and after starting next to the last row, I climbed through the field to finish 30th of the 49. With the talented racers in my field, I was happy, had a great battle with several guys I used to race around, and even caught and passed the jerk (work friendly term) that rammed into me on the first lap.

 

Oct. 15, 2016 (The rest of the day)

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The day started before dawn for the drive to Lenoir and the first race of the 2016-17 North Carolina Cyclocross Series. Turns out tennis does not help one bit for cycling – I finished about 5 from dead last, but this picture from Sam captures the moment… this is the last lap and coming out of the last turn, the lap before I had caught this guy but took a beer hand-up (illegal, but it’s ‘cross) and had to work to catch him again, as I started my sprint, the chain slipped (why I am about to go over the bars) so no fun sprint to the line for us.

Then Sam and I visited Henry River Mill Village (it’s own post) and headed for a hike a part of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail to the Upper and Lower Gragg Prong Waterfalls and Hunt-Fish Falls. We got a late start, and I decided to turn around before it got dark, as it was it was after 5:30 when we got back to the truck.

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Cruising along dirt roads in the mountains

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Finally we got on the foggy Blue Ridge Parkway and headed for a campground for the night.

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Dinner, a small fire, a quick card game and off to bed!

 

Jan. 16, 2016

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The final race of the cyclocross season. A muddy course at Tanglewood Park.

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This mud hole was after the asphalt road climb. Left was the way to go, right was a lot deeper.

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Why do you read your camera owners manual? To find out it can do 20 frames per second as a motor drive.

 

So I did some mud splash details.

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One of the great traditions of ‘cross is heckling. North Carolina is a southern state, so everyone is nice…. good thing I moved back. Normally when I heckle Wes Richards he glares at me (he is normally leading/winning his race) but today I got a smile….

 

 

Jan. 3, 2016

 

Race #13 of the North Carolina Cyclo-Cross was in Charlotte. As always, the course featured mud, sand, a big run up and a lot of fun. I played around with off camera flash and panning. My race was OK, after spending all week on the couch with my back, I laid back at the start and tried to pick off as many as I could…. finished 38th of the 46 finishers. I am still not racing as well as last year : (

Nov. 1, 2015

11015podAA wonderful morning drive to Boone.

11015podBTough to see but 2 dozen turkeys (right in the woods) were around this shack, but they ran when I stopped.

11015podC_EthanAI like the course in Boone, around an old fairgrounds and dirt track. The race starts and almost immediately feature a run up (I hate this one)

11015podCWith all the rain, the course was a little “snotty”

My races? I was not DFL, but I could see him. I rode hard but just don’t have any speed. But I had a great solo trip, camping, racing with friends and a little hiking.