Monday, September 27, 2010

Cross BABY!

so yes...the blogging fell off the face of the planet for 2010 (at least pre-cross racing!).

SORRY! I don't know how you uber-bloggers keep up. For me I manage 3 kids, work, a wife...and a bit of riding/swimming/running.

The summer went by VERY quickly with lots of camps/coaching and a bit of racing. You know, that multi-sport stuff...I like my summers to be know, lazy days, etc.

But the leaves are changing and the sound of cowbells fill the air. It's time for cyclocross.

2010 marks my 16th year of cross, and I am just as fired up as that first race at Hart Park in Bakersfield in 1994!

This year the New England races kicked off even earlier with Quad cross falling on 9/12 and the first VERGE races on the 18/19th of September.

This meant a solid specific prep phase started near mid July for me. I had some solid training weeks and knew the form was ok.

At Quad, I JUST missed the break with JONNY BOLD and Mark the Shark but rolled in for 3rd and my first podium of the year.

Fast forward 1 week to Catamount outdoor center for the first 2 VERGE races on the notoriously tough courses in Vermont. I made the drive Friday PM to avoid sitting in the car for 4.5 hours on Saturday. after some dinner and a few beers with Jason F. in Burlington, I was ready to rock Saturday.

The course was TOUGH with lots of uphill, grass climbing. I got a great start and slotted in behind Bold, Aspolm, Hines and Kraus. Then Matt had some bike problems and let a gap open to the 3 fast guys. I made a BIG effort at the end of lap 1 and used MANY "matches" to make contact...they promptly accelerated and I was off alone. I would roll around, suffering BADLY!, till the finish for 5th place. I knew the form was good, I was just a bit blocked and needed to implement the "details" to have a good Sunday.

Sunday I knew I was better. the sensations were good and the pace came easy in warm up.

I got another good start and slotted in with the usual suspects. The pace was strong but tolerable until Rog came through and turned the screws (Here). The final selection was made and it was me with Rog, Jonny, Kevin and Curtis. A lap later, Curtis would be gone...then, with 2 to go another hard push by Rog and we dispatched Jonny. Roger would pull a small gap on Kevin and I and jet away for the win. I let Kevin get a small gap on the last lap and I could not catch him 3rd place and on the podium at a Verge race in the bag!

There is now a small break in the VERGE series races, but that doesnt mean there arent CX races in New England.

This past weekend was the "semi-classic" Suckerbrook CX in New Hampshire.

I had a tough week with Erika away for 4 days on a girls weekend, so my pre-race training was pretty spotty. I tried to get good sleep and eat ok (2 hotdogs for dinner the night before...yea baby!).

I arrived ~90 minutes pre-race and got a short lap on the course then proceeded to warm up well on the trainer.

I was able to squeeze a front row start place and timed the whistle well. Pete Smith and I got away clean and we slotted into a group with Rob Hult, my teammate Big Al and a few others. then, half way through the first lap I was remounting after the stairs and I kicked the rear brake cable out of the stop!!! shit! a quick NASCAR style stop and I was back racing again, in about 15th place. I chased HARD for 1 lap and quickly got back to the front. We made a selection a lap later and it was down to me, Rob and Curtis. On the last lap Curtis got caught in traffic and gapped off. I waited till right before the sand pit and I attacked Rob and got a gap...I was able to hold him off for the first win of the season! Of course I had to rush home to grab my no podium.

Next up, New England Worlds....Gloucester.


GetBackJoJo said...

Very exciting play by play, KP.
Congrats on all the podium placing! (even though you couldn't relish it by standing on the podium...)

MaineSport said...

Nice work, KP.