Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Verge #5 and #6 : Cycle-Smart International

Northampton is one of my favorite CX locals. Look park is gorgeous, the courses are super, and the town of NoHo is typical cute New England.

Logistics for the weekend were tough. Figure in a 4 hour drive, with Halloween being Friday and I had to juggle a few things. Erika and I tag teamed the kids to get through dinner, trick or treating and bed time so I was on the road by 8PM. 2.5 hours later I was in MA at the in-laws. 6AM wake call for a 10:30 start in NoHo.

Sat Race: front row call up as I am 7th in points in Elite Masters. I get an ok start, but not my usual "holeshot". No prob, I slot in about 8th and we cruise the first lap. I have good sensations and stay in that group for the first lap. Just as we make the 180 onto the pavement to end the lap, i punch it hard, spin the tire a bit, then it hops onto the pavement and "rolls" the tire! Doh. Luckily only a small (5-6inch) section pops off. Meanwhile Todd C. from Westwood Velo is yelling his head off as I try to pull it back on...um Todd, I didnt want to roll the tire chief....I get the tire on, and chase like a MF'er for 1.5 laps. I then latch onto the group with Mark B. from Ottawa, a couple of Westwood dudes (including todd), and a few Corner Cycle guys. My teammates Big Al and Stephan are in there too. I go to the front and push the pace, trying to dislodge a few guys as the laps wind down. On the last lap, I drill it and get a small gap, that I hold to the finish, for 9th. This was a VERY had race for me and I was dry heaving for 5+min after. A recoverite and a coke with a spin cool down and I was on the road to the inlaws.

Sun Race : the course was reset and SWEET, kudos to the guys at Cycle-Smart for 2 great courses. During warm up, I knew I had good sensations and was looking to make the front group asap. At the start I nail the clip in (I love Shimano XTR pedals btw...), and am second wheel into the dirt behind Roger A. A few guys slot in front of me as I had to dismount at the sand when Roger swerved, including Mark Mc. He and Johnny separated themselves and now the race was on. The only mistake I made on the day was NOT rolling off the front of our group with Roger and Dan C. These 2 stayed 10sec in front of my group the whole race...good racing by them. I was in the group with Kevin H, Mark S and Curtis B. We worked pretty well together, but to be honest Mark and Kevin did most of the work. With 2 to go Curtis tried a dig...then dropped a chain (did I mention I hate single rings), just then the 3 of us accelerated and Curtis was off. with about 1/2 lap to go, Mark tried to let Kevin roll off a bit, but I punched it around him and got on Kevin's wheel through the twisty's up top. Kevin led onto the pavement and braked very hard in the 180 corner. this forced me to lock up the rear wheel and a small gap opened and I could not come around him. 6th place on the day.

All in all, a GREAT weekend with solid rides and a few $$ earned.

Next up some smaller NE races before Sterling Verge race on the 29th.


Brendan said...

good work

CCC said...

You looked SOLID on Sunday, dude...great riding.