Sunday, October 28, 2012

Boss Cross 3 and KC Fun

Pretty fun weekend here in KC. Spent Saturday morning hanging out with the family and got a few things done around the house. Rolled out of the house just in time to arrive at the Riverside race venue and get a few laps in as a warm up. Got signed up and soon it was race time. I was terrible off the start but after a lap I ended up in 2nd place with Joe all ready pulling away. I knew Andrew was back there somewhere and no doubt he was charging to the front of the race. At that point I tried to run a steady pace and hold a gap over the chasers but sure enough Andrew was slowly catching me a little every lap. With 3 laps to go Andrew caught me and I planned to just ride with him to the end of the race but I bobbled on the barriers and gave him a gap. That was pretty much it, race over. Joe wan, Andrew 2nd, me third. Pretty happy with the race and how I rode. I had the Quark Power meter on my bike so it should be interesting to see what the data looks like.

After the race we headed down to the Plaza for the Water Fire Festival. Hours of dancers, music, and singing, and tons of FIRE! Pretty fun evening for the whole family.
Should be an interesting week for training. I have Cyclocross Specific Intervals on my workout schedule for the first time this year. I guess its time to get serious.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Flatwater Cyclocross Weekend

So many choices of where to race last weekend, in fact, too many choices. There were races in Lincoln NE, Tulsa OK, Des Moines IA, or Kansas City. Looking at results from the races it appears that there were so many competing races that it diluted the fields at all the races. Not a good thing for the promoters.

My choice was to head to Lincoln Ne. Mathgeek had to study for a exam so needed to get the boys out of the house for the weekend. Whenever I travel out of town to race with the boys I've found it tough to focus on the races. Going into the weekend I was fighting a cold and since I had the boys I decided to do the masters race. It worked out pretty well. I could race before the kids got bored of being at the races and there wern't too many people out there early so I could keep track of what they were up to.

I have to say that I allways enjoy the the Pioneers Park venue and nothing beats coming back home to race. Seems like the weekend flies by and I never get a chance to see all the people that I want to see. Thanks to the Burke's for giving us a place to hang out and to John Lefler and the crew for putting on the race.

Jay running the barriers. 3rd on day 1

Curly was our photographer all weekend. I still have to figure out how to put some video on here.

Podium for the Masters Race. Won both days as Paul and Randall battled all weekend to fill out the podium.

Curly shot this picture, not too bad for a 10yr old!

Day 1 Open Podium

Nate the bunnyhopper in action
Fun weekend. Got to race, hang out with the boys, and see some friends. Only thing that would of made it better was it Mathgeek was there with us. Next time.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

SmartWool USGP Ft. Collins

Last weekend was the Smartwool USGP of Cyclocross in Ft. Collins. Joe and I drove out and met up with Nebraska crew on Friday afternoon. After a quick lunch we headed out to set up the TREK Camp and pre ride the course. Overall the course design was same as last year and it was just as bumpy and dry as it was then. There was some rain in the forecast but not much so we were thinking it was going to stay dry. Little did we know the the rain was on the way.

It rained some Friday evening and a bit more overnight. In the morning the course looked awesome. The rain had turned the dry moon dust into a tacky, solid course. I rode the course a few times between races and then rode the trainer before my race. During that time on the trainer the rain started again and only stopped just before my race. I rode over to the start area and not too much later we were in the grid getting ready to start. I looked over and saw Mark yelling something about tires. The race started and I soon found out what  Mark was saying. Going into the 2nd turn I found out that the rain had turned the course to a slimey, slippery mess. Not knowing that conditions had changed the first thing I did was crash. Wrong tires at the wrong pressure moved me from 3rd place to somewhere in the 20's. Here is where smart, experienced teammates come in handy. After the crash my bike was messed up from getting run over by half the field so I went into the pit for a bike change. Mark had changed my wheels to ones with Challenge Limus mud tires. Perfect tires and the right pressure and now I could ride. It was a battle but in the end I got up to 5th.My teammate Mark Legg continues to dominate the 45+ race and won again.

After my race I worked the pit for the 35+ race where Mark was 3rd and Matt was 18th.Then helped Mark Legg pit for Katie Compton's win. After that Joe was in the Elite Mens race. Whew, it got to be a long day!

Sunday dawned cool and sunny but it would soon warm up into a beautiful day. The USGP crew had made some changes to the course that were pretty fun. The mud was gone and the course was fast. From my warm up rides on the course I knew that I had some really good lines on the downhill and I was fast. I also knew that I was going to pay for my efforts the day before on the climbs. It was going to be critical to get a good start and hit the downhill section first so I was focused on a good start. Unfortunately I decided to test the theory that says 2 objects can not occupy the same spot at the same time. I was flying around the outside of the first left had sweeper and in prime position to take the lead in the tight right hand turn that follows. The only problem with my plan was that the lead rider saw me coming and chopped me into the wood poles on the inside of the turn. Naturally I lost that battle and down I went. The end result was just about the same as Saturdays race. Not quite as far back in the field and it only took a lap to bet back to the front of the race. At this point I was in 3rd right on the 2nd place riders wheel........until we started climbing. 2nd place just rode away and I knew it was going to be a battle to get a good finish. Flying down the downhills and crawling up the climbs allowed me to hold my position for most of the race but by the end I was fighting for 5th place with 2 other riders. It was close but  I managed to hang onto 5th while my teammate Mark won again.

The 35+ race was super exciting as Mark took the hole shot and built a good lead. As the race progressed his lead began to shrink and on the last lap it was down to 7 seconds. He won and Matt was 12th, in fact the TREK Cyclocross Collective had 4 riders in the top 16! Pretty happy the mud was gone as there were 2 of us working the pit for 4 riders. Next up was Katie and she again won with a substantial margin. The elite Mens race was was fun to watch while working for the 3 Trek riders in the race. Joe was out there having a blast on the downhill and just having fun.

I do love coming to Ft.Collins as the vibe is great and seeing our transplanted Nebraska/Kansas buddies is fun. So now I'm home and I guess I brought home a cold with me. Bummer but I'll get over it.

Mark has the leaders jersey in the 35 + race.

J Pow crushing the Elite field

LVB had a great weekend at the races. He led most of Saturdays race and ended up 5th. Then he rode hard for 2nd on Sunday. All while putting up with a house full of TREK guys. Thanks for putting us up!

Here's the TREK compound. Pretty fun being parked beside the big TREK tent.
Next up, heading for Lincoln to (hopefully) race. Have to see if I can shake this cold before then.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

360 Cup

What a crazy time its been since Gateway Cross Cup. The shop was super busy, and I was just fried from all the travel. Just like last year Mathgeek had the end of quarter starting that Friday so I was a single dad for the for the next week. I was all set to head up to Boss Cross but in the end it was best that I skipped the race. The following week the shop was super busy and my training sucked. Going into the 360 cup weekend I was a little worried about my fitness but I was really more interested in how JoBro was going to do in his first cross race of the year. Big changes for him this year. He grew a ton since last season so a new bike was in order. New shoes since his feet are now bigger than mine, and a switch from Shimano to SRAM. He got on his bike and didn't know how to shift it. To say I was a little distracted with him racing would be an understatement but I really didn't mind.

The crew from 360 Racing did a great job with their race. Quick, easy registration, a great course, and the one and only John Lefler announcing. Pro all the way. I did the 40+/50+ race since I had family in town for the weekend and oddly enough it went well. I'm still working through a gearing change from last year and I think I finally have it figured out. I ended up winning and felt pretty good in the process so that's a good sign for this weeks USGP races.

After my race JoBro went and even after a number of crashes he finished 3rd in his race. He had a great time and is ready to race again.

Helmets on for safety! Hats off to Steve and Andy for finishing 2nd and 3rd after working all day putting on the race.

Kind of wondered what Katie was riding since we have 2 of her bikes in KC.

The Nebraska boys continue to pick up podium spots.
JoBro in action. I still can't get over how big he looks on the bike. Shouldn't surprise me, he can wear my clothes now. Jup, that's my kit hes racing in.

Jobro is wondering how long it's going to take for him to get as fast as Christopher.
Just about time to head out for Ft. Collins for round 3-4 of the USGP of Cyclocross. Hoping for some mud to equalize to altitude advantage the Colorado boys have.