Monday, October 20, 2008

Pineland CX : "almost" a win

This Saturday was the "hometown" race at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester Maine. Hosted by the Maine Cycling Club, this is one of my favorite venues. 30+K of grass xc ski trails and open fields.

The course set was moderately technical, but very "heavy" with a good bit of elevation and long grass.

Sat was the first real "fall" day in Maine : frost on the grass and cars, the warm up would require some "Belgian knee warmers", along with thermal gloves and jacket.

The line up was first come first serve, so I lined up front row. The whistle is blown, and I drill it, get the whole shot...then miss a shift. My teammate Ryan leads into the grass, and I am second. Ryan is MONEY in the tech stuff and staying in front of me till the grass section across the damn. I then drill it, pass him and set off on my own...

After 3 laps, I am 10sec up on big AL and Wheels, thinking I would see 3 to go, I would keep pushing on...then I saw 4 to go. So I drifted back, let them catch me, then sat on. Al was setting a nice comfortable pace, then a stick in the spokes and he lost his I attacked. Wheels came with, and we were off. I could hurt Wheels on the steep, and harder sections, then he would roll back to me on the tech sections. I had plans to drill it up the climb to the finish, but Wheels and I called a truce and decided to split the cash. So we cruised in, hand-in-hand. Of course he rolled across JUST in front of me, and got the credit for the win.

All in all a FUN race, on a gorgeous day. Post race, I got my cash, then spent it on lunch with the fam at the Pinelands cafe.

Below is a pic courtesy of Don McEwan:

Friday, October 17, 2008

Gloucester Verge Series Races #3 and #4

If you saw my 10/8 post, you know I have mixed feelings about racing in Gloucester MA for the traditional UCI CX weekend. I have never really been "in" the races down there. Usually illness or poor starts conspire against me.

For 2008, I thought the trend would continue with an early week "bug" hanging around till Thursday. I hit it hard with all the homeopathic remedies I know...and maybe they worked, or at least my brain thought they did!

Sat Elite Masters 1/2/3 Race: I got a front row call up, and nailed the whistle pretty good, to slot into third behind Johnny B. and Curtis B. Through the twisty's and into the run-up, I drop back a few more slots. The legs are good, but not great. I settle in a group with Roger A. and a few Corner Cycle guys (including Kevin H.). I am making a few mistakes in the corners, and having to close back up. Then Roger attacks, and the rubber band is snapped. I drop to a group with John M. and a few Westwood dudes. I basically sit on, and let them duke it out...with 1 lap to go I am hurting and they gap me a bit. Coleman Oconnor goes by...and I drop to 11th. I would finish solo there. Full recovery post race. Recoverite, dry clothes, compression tights, and calories. straight home for some family time and R&R.

Sun Elite Masters 1/2/3 Race: similar call up today. This time I NAIL the whistle, clip in like greased lightning (did I mention I love M970 Shimano Pedals?) and hole shot to the dirt. This was key, as they added a steep runup into the first 2 min of the course. I hit this in 3rd or 4th (Mark Mc. and Johnny B. lead). I surf this second group (Roger A, Mark S, Dan C) then let a gap go in the twisty's and get caught by the same group as Sat. I have good legs today, but the teams (corner cycle and westwood velo) are controlling so I just sit on the back. With a lap to go, I should have punched it up the road to lead into the runup as I am fastest of the group here, but I dont. Then, on the next barrier section, I kick the pedal while in the big:big combo, and the chain drops...DOH! With 2 min to race, I am trying to pedal the chain back on, it jumps up quick, but the gap is 20 bike lengths. I charge HARD down the backstretch near the ocean, and just as I catch on the 4 guys start drilling it...I am gassed. I cant respond and roll in for 10th.

All in all, I will take these results. I scored Verge points at both days, and maybe even moved up 1 spot. I am healthy, and the courses get better for me (Noho and Sterling).

I don't have any photos this week, but check for a bunch of great shots of the event.

This weekend : hometown race at Pineland, then Canton!

Pic : post race euphoria:

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Not the only thing...

there were other races this past weekend, besides Gloucester New England worlds!

3 PBMC Athletes toed the line at IM Hawaii World Championships.

Mother natured returned this year with strong winds and heat, the first time in 4 years or so.

Alex Mc., Blake B. and David L. all dug deep and got it done. congrats to you all!

Coach Kurt

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

LOVE - HATE = Gloucester

Love : the super bowl of CX in the Northeast, great local, close to home.

Hate : poor starts, poor fitness, a flu bug in 2007 (=dnf on Sat last year)

and for 2008...the cold that my 3 little ones has is creepy in.

I know I will be good for Gloucester 2009 though.