Thursday, January 31, 2013

Masters Cross Worlds

Today was the Masters Cyclocross World Championships race for me. Overall it went pretty well and I ended up 5th. At this point I'm really not sure how I feel about that result. On one had it's pretty good considering 3 weeks ago I could barely walk. On the other hand I really wanted that podium. But was not to be and I have to live with that. Conditions were the toughest Ive ever had to race in. So tough that we only did 3 laps during the 40 minute race. Oh well, on to tomorrow and Marks race. A bu nch more KC folks race tomorrow in totally different conditions as the mud changes to frozen ruts and snow.Have to give a shout out to Steve Tilford for winning my race and Dean Parker and Doug Long for podium spots in their race.

The start of my race, I'm sucking air all ready

More running than I needed to do.

What a mess

Steve Tilford, Jeff Appletans, and I pre-race
Off to bed, another early start tommorrow.
Thanks for the pics and the cheers, JP, Travis, and the rest of the KC gang. Cant forget to say thanks to Mark for his help in the pit.

Monday, January 21, 2013

One week to go until Cyclocross Worlds and it appears that I might just get to ride next week. I was pretty worried that my calf wouldn't heal quick enough but I saw the doc today and got the clearance to ride. I guess that's not quite true, he said in a weeks time I should be healed enough that I shouldn't make it any worse by racing. So for the next week its ibuprofen, ice, and ems (electronic muscle stimulation). I really think the ems unit has made all the difference in getting my leg healed. I've been using it every day from the time Ive been injured and my calf felt better after just one treatment. It's going to be interesting to see how I feel in a weeks time.

Love the doctors at KCOI. I know quite a few guys riders who have been here for various reasons.

I saw this picture of Andy Hampsten the other day and it reminded me of the pre -epo era of cycling. I still remember watching Hampsten climb on the front one year and he was off the back the next year.  Bummer, glad to see the sport heading back the cleaner side.

More as the we get closer to go time.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Pictures and video from Cross Nationals

Our best set up yet. 10X20 heated tent. 1 section for riders and 1 section for mechanics.

Tim and Sue Butler. Friends and power couple from Portland. Sue won in her 1st race back after back surgery and Tim was 3rd in his race.

Mark Legg checkiing out Katie's bike. That's after 1 pre-ride lap on Saturday.

Ellen Noble, 17 yrs old and is 2nd in the singlespeed race, 16th Elite (2nd U-23), and Jr 17-18 National Champion. This girl is the real deal and still one of the nicest people I have ever worked with.

Katie with the win. Matt Roy said it best, "had to be in the top 3 of the hardest races I've ever worked". Working the pit was brutal but totally worth it.

Pulled this video off the Cyclocross Mag site. Shows the course conditions but best of all it shows Matt Shriver winning!
So that's it for Cross Nationals.......on to the World Championships!

2013 Cyclocross Nationals

As I sit here in the sprinter rolling back home from Cross Nationals I’m not sure how I feel about how the week went. On one hand the whole Trek CXC team had great results and on the other had I’m injured. I really do love the whole team aspect of cyclocross and the icy, cold conditions showed that a great team brings great results. 3 National Champions, 2- 2nd , and a 3rd is proof that it works. The riders that didn’t podium showed up, rode hard and scored top 10/top 20 results.

Results are great but that’s not all there is to cyclocross. Working the pit for other riders is something of an art and it’s something that every rider should do. Believe me, working the pit in a dry condition September race is nothing like what we just went through in Madison.

This is what went down for us in the Elite Womens race. As a team we had Katie, Ellen, and Abby. Of course our focus was to get Katie the National Champions jersey but we support all our riders the best we can. At race time both Abby and Ellen had 2 people in the pit for them with their 2nd bike. Katie had 4 people and 2 bikes. Course conditions at start time were partly cloudy with temps in the low 20’s. The sun was melting the top layer of ice on the course making for slimey mud on top frozen ruts. From previous races we knew that the mud was going to freeze on the bikes so the riders were going to pit often. Our plan was to not wash the bikes because everything was freezing as soon as you walked away from the washer. To our surprise we were told that there was no water before the race even started making it a moot point.

So the race starts and Katie got a great start and was leading before she hit pit 1. At this point I have no idea what’s going on with Ellen and Abby since I’m pitting for Katie along with Jay, Mark Legg, and Matt Shriver. Katie starts taking bikes going through pit 2 and will continue to take a bike every half lap the rest of the race. At first we went with the no water plan but half way through the race the washers were back running and they had hot water. I think the temperature was dropping as the race went on because the ice/mud build up became impossible to get off the bike unless you used the washers. Here is where pre-race prep comes in. Mark Legg tunes Katie’s bikes and sealed cable systems along with a few other Pro touches ment that we could use water and not worry about cables freezing. We started washing bikes halfway through the race and using deicer on contact points, derailluers, and pedals.

In the end Katie had no bike issues and won her 9th National Championship. Matt Shriver was soaked from washing bikes and Mark Legg, Jay and I were a muddy, frozen mess. Was it worth it, you bet it was.
It got even better after the race when I found out that Ellen ended up 16th (2nd U-23), and Abby was 18th. Pretty incredible rides against a fast field in tough conditions. Kudos to the rest of the guys for keeping Ellen and Abby rolling with no issues.

Results for CXC:

Katie Compton: Elite Woman National Champion
Ellen Noble: Jr 17-18 National Champion, 2nd Singlespeed, 16th Elite Women(2nd U-23)
Matt Shriver: Masters 30-34 National Champion
Mark Savery: 2nd Masters 40-44
Issac Neff: 11th Elite Men
Jay Thomas : 22nd Masters 40-44
Matt Tillinghast: 22nd Masters 35-39
Abby Strigel: 18th Elite women

So, a great weekend for the Trek CXC team. As you can see I am not in the results due to a injury. I have a pulled/torn calf muscle that keeps me from running. On the day of my race I was doing my last course recon lap before getting on the trainer. I took one step on the stairs and felt a pop(seems like I heard it as well) in my calf. It took a long time just to be able get back to the car. Once there we did everything we could to allow me to race but it was just too pain full. It was one of the hardest decisions I've had to make in a long time but there was nothing I could do. Sure did take a long time to pull off the kit and change into street clothes. Over the past few days it has been feeling much better, at least I can walk now. But I'm going to get some expert help to see if I will be able to do worlds in 3 weeks.

So we have just rolled through Iowa City so I’ll just have to post once I get home. More after I get some news from the doc.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Day 2 of Cross Nationals is over and it was a pretty eventful for the Trek CXC crew. Our youngest member of the team is 17yr old Ellen Noble and today she pulled on her 1st National Champions jersey! Pretty emotional time for all of us as she lost her father less than a year ago and she was riding in memory for her dad. Just a great time for all of us.

Tomorrow is the big day for us as Jay, Mark, both Matt's and Lucas all race. It's going to be a busy day in the pit with temps starting above freezing and falling through the day.

No shortage of snow even with the rain last night.

Ellen warming up with mom close by.

Steve Songer from KC. He had a podium finish locked up until a mechanical made him DNF. Huge bummer.

Even with a injured shoulder Steve Tilford won the 50-54 race.
Getting ready to head for dinner then off to a early bedtime. In case you are wondering my leg is improving by the day. Trying to do everything I can to get it to heal . Thanks to everyone for the advise on what to do.
More tomorrow after I thaw out.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Packing up and heading for Madison WI today for Cross Nationals. I really can't say that I'm excited but maybe I will be when I get there. It's going to be interesting to see how the race works out as I'm going old school on my race travel plans. My race is tomorrow and I'm not even leaving Omaha until 4pm today. Yup, KC to Omaha to Madison. 12 hrs in the car, arrive after midnight. It looks like there may be a chance to pre-ride the course around noon but if it's too muddy I may not even ride the course before my 3pm race. I remember doing this when I just started racing and sometimes it worked out, sometimes not. Oh well, it is what it is.

here's the course conditions on Tuesday morning

Still plenty of snow on the course yesterday but by the end of today it should be gone. With the B races and Singlespeeds racing in above freezing temps it should get pretty muddy by the end of the day.
Better get moving and load up the van, time to head north.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Suuuuupercross is here!!!!!!

Yup, it that time of year again, the Supercross season starts tonight!

Need to make this a destination coffee stop ride one of these days.

Winter training, at least the snow is melting.
Pretty excited about the Supercross season starting. I all ready have my tickets for the round in St.Louis.
It's warm is Australia and that means V8 Supercars. Little cars with V-8 motors makes for some really exciting racing.
Speaking of racing, I guess I'll give it a go tomorrow. We have the Winterymix CX race here in KC as a tuneup for Nationals. Should be amusing as the temps are above freezing, the snow is melting and that means mud. Less than excited about heading to Madison WI for Cross Nationals
Current course conditions in Madison. They have been using heavy equipment to remove some of the 20" of snow from the course. With the extended forecast showing a daily freeze/thaw cycle it going to be a muddyfrozenrut kind of course. It's going to be interesting.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Years

Started out thinking this post was going to be a long one but I don't think I want to rehash 2012. I'll just say that it was a good year. The family had a great year and everybody is healthy and happy. I had a great year of bicycle racing with the Mercy crew on the road and the Trek Cyclocross Collective this fall. Pretty amazed that I continue to perform better every year even as I get older. Have to say thanks to my coach Adam at Source Endurance, it just doesn't happen without his guidance.Also have to say thanks to Jay, Kent, Scott and the whole crew at the TREK Bicycle Stores for the support and equipment. Of course none of this happens without the understanding of Mathgeek and the boys. Bicycle racing is a time consuming expensive sport and they let me follow my dreams.

The racing in 2013 starts off early with the National Cyclocross Championships in January and then Masters World Cyclocross Championships in February.

Even Champions fall now and again. Makes me feel better about the race last Saturday. I was definitely off my game and even raced on the wrong tires. I was struggling during the race but after falling 6 times I decided to call it a day. I have figured out that the reason that I was struggling is a hip injury that is killing my power on the bike. Bummer, only 1 week to get it fixed before Nationals.
Fun times at Christmas. I'm not much of a holiday guy but Mathgeek and the boys love it.
On to 2013, best wishes to all for a Happy New Year!