Wednesday, October 13, 2010

UCI3 Cincinnati Cyclocross Festival!

One good thing about the growth of cyclocross is the growth of big time UCI events right here in our own back yard! With in a 6-8 hour drive, we have the USGP in Louisville, Madison, and of course the UCI3 festival in Cincinnati! I have been really wanting to do this event for the past few years, but have been pushing it off. So this year I decided it was time to see what all the hype has been about. Curt and I made the 6 hour drive down on Friday just in time to catch the pro race at Devou Park in Kentucky. It was brutal. More like a mountain bike course without trees than a CX course. So in the back of my mind, I was kind of happy not to race day 1. So after a good night sleep, we were back on the road to Middletown, OH for day 2 at Somerset Park for the Java Johnny CX race. The park was awesome. It had everything, rolling hills, Long flats and paved sections, sand, and tight twisty technical and I mean technical sections! I was called up and was able to grab a good spot in the 2nd row. So knowing I had 80 other racers breathing down my back I had to nail a good start. I did. Down the drag strip and just missing an early crash, I hit the grass around 10th. I held this spot for about 1/2 a lap as smaller faster riders passed me. I kept the gas on the entire time. I handle the bike very well, through all the transitions, and technical sections, but felt like I could never get into that extra gear to attack back. By the time the race was over, I sucked in tons of dust, and even managed to sprint out a position at the line. I ended up 35th out of 80. Actually better than I thought I got, and happy with the result overall. So now it was on to day 2.

Harbin Park was the site for the final day of racing. The course was more of a drag strip. Not as bumpy, and long straight aways with nice smooth fast rounding corners. The typical power or roadie course. I usually race better on the 2nd day of double day events, and really felt that the course suited my style of racing well. So I was looking for a better result. Again, I was on the 2nd row and in front of 90-100 racers. I got a great start again, but this time the field was more aggressive, and people were doing some very dumb shit to try and get in front! after almost being taken out more than once in the start, I decided that this really wasn't that important and I needed to make sure I went the work the next day. So I backed off slightly and figured that I would be able to pull back most of the jokers as they popped! This was working, the Scott Fabinjanski passed me. This was who I needed to be racing with, so I jumped on his wheel and held on. This worked well as Scott was picking off racers one by one. I was feeling real comfortable with the pace, and was able to match every move. We were getting faster and faster in the 2nd lap, and as I rounded a paved corner 1/2 way through the course and into the grass, my front tire caught the grass and rolled my tubular off the rim causing me to me thrown over my handle bars onto my head and right shoulder. I shook the cob webs out, and thought what the hell happened and where is my bike!?! I quickly found it picked it up and tried to mount it. It would not move! This is when I noticed my tire wedged between my fork and brake arm. My race was done... I walked over to the Wolverine tent thinking it was time to grab a beer, and was offered a new front wheel to finish my race instead. Thanks guys! I was able to get 2 more laps in before finally being pulled. But it was still fun.

The event was great. I have a few bitches but will keep them to myself. Overall the racing was tough, fun, and great experience for racing back at home. I am sure to be back next year. And i would highly recommend doing these races to anyone!

So back home. Back on the trainer. 1/2 way through my training plan. And healing up nicely. next race is a new one in the Tailwind Series. In Linden Michigan. Should be a fun time, and my fitness should be getting close to peak form! just in time for the USGP in Louisville, Vets Park in Ann Arbor, and the ICEMAN!!!

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