Monday, September 28, 2009

Ithaca Grand Prix of Cyclocross!

What a great race! JB Hancock, his wife, and family have really come up with something special in the middle of Michigan. With all the features of a world class cross course, and the flare of events like the Iceman that really some up the culture of bike racing, the Ithaca GP of CX is a must do event for anyone that truly enjoys cyclocross. If you have not made this event yet, please add it to your calendar for next year -- and thank me later. Team Sandbag was fortunate enough to help present the race, and what a great year to do it! By the looks of the results, the race had doubled if not tripled racers! So if we're lucky again, hopefully we will be invited back to host next year's event. Another cool thing about presenting the event was that it really got our team involved by helping out, learning a little about racing and setting up for cyclocross.

The day of the event was perfect. We had several team mates in the C-race. Curt who finished a very strong 5th in a large field of 24, Benny, Lee and of course Nolan doing the race for the 2nd year in a row and taking home 2nd place in the Junior class! In the B-class we had TP and myself. And In the Single Speed class, we had Brad doing his first ever CX race and finishing a very strong 6th place! And because I don't know any better, I had to double up and hopped in the SS class also.

At the Start of the B-race, I was feeling gooooooooood! it was a fast start and a prime on the line. I really did not want to blow myself up on the prime, but once we went I was sitting near the front. Then Eric Kohler pulled past me on his single speed and took the cash. I was still setting near the front and marking all the fast guys in the class and looking for wheel to sit on. We went through the amphitheater stairs in a large group. I jumped on my bike, tried to take the inside corner. Touched a wheel, and then jack knifed my wheel and went down. A few guys landed on top of me, and by the time I got up I went from top 5 to about 14th. I did not panic, but I had my work cut out for me. So I turned the power on and started picking off riders one by one. Even though I was using a ton of energy to get back into the game, I was feeling stronger and stronger. I made my way back up to 6th place and was ready to make my move to take 5th and then my rear tire popped! NOT AGAIN!!!!! And this time I just rolled past the pit! So that meant I had to run and entire loop with my bike on my shoulder before I could grab my pit bike again. So needless to say I finished dead last.

But there was hope! I still had the single speed race to do. I there was any amazing 15 racers in the class! WOW! Again the whistle blew and I found myself pulling the lead to the prime and here comes Eric Money Bags! Quickly the fast guys sorted things out. Eric was gone off the front, Wayne Cook as fast as every right behind him. Some guy I don't know, and Pat Russel. I was able to stick on Pat's wheel for most of the race, in which I was very happy to do. Pat is fast and can whoop on me any day of the week. So to hang with him lets me know where my training has taken me so far! A few laps around the park and I was still sitting in 5th. The the 3rd place guy stopped in the pit and grabbed his pump. I took advantage of this and put the power down to try and grow a gap as big as I could. I was able to stay away for the entire race, but was letting Pat slip away in the final 2 laps. I came across the line in 4th place with a large gap. So I felt like I redeemed myself and had a great race. Especially going into the Munson CX night race next weekend.

If I can keep air in my tires, it is game on at Munson!


TP said...

Chunky you work very hard, brother!

Sorry about the flat in B's and Congrats on redemption on the Le'Basturd!

Curt said...

Saturday night lights. Cant wait.

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