My cohort, Simon Vickers, and I journeyed north to Kirkwood Ski Area for some alpine cyclocross racing this weekend. We enjoyed ideal weather, a whacky yet fun course, and the comraderie of a bunch of fellow 'cross heads.
I raced in the 35+ Men's B group which proved to be the largest field and I also raced with the Men's B Open, Singlespeed Open, and Women's A groups.
After an entertaining "LeMans" style start, the course took us up a steep climb which sorted things out pretty quickly. I was feeling pretty good, riding conservatively with the altitude and all, battling in the top dozen or so until the third lap when I blew a curb hop and pinch flatted the rear - ugh. For a moment I stood around thinking my day was done, then a lightbulb lit in my thick head, hey man run to the truck and fix it!
Simon helped me out with the tube change and got me rolling quickly and I was still on the lead lap. After the initial shock of getting back to race speed, I felt real good, passed a bunch of people, and generally had a good ol' time. I ended up something like ninth out of fourteen starters in my group, and despite my mishap, super happy.
After my race I regrouped to cheer on Simon in the "main event" and take some pics.
Changing room, pit, and sleeping quarters.
Bikes awaiting riders before the start.
And they're off!
Simon blitzed the first hill and instantly got a nice gap. A mountainbiker who looked a lot like Danielo DeLuca chased hard the whole race. Here he is getting ready to remount after the stair runup.
And at the bottom of the stair run down - yes a rundown, which was a bit shaky in cycling shoes.
Simon's lead hovered at around twenty second until about three laps to go when he upped the pace and pushed it out to nearly fifty seconds.
Simon trashing the field!
Ripping through "The Village" section.
Jim Jentens (sp?), the founder of Giro Helmets, put in a strong showing, and was one of the many super friendly folks I met.
Simon rolling to victory - note that he's riding a single speed too!
There was tons of free swag, including beer, after the race. I really enjoyed hanging out and yakking with all sorts of 'cross characters. Good times!
Special thanks and congrats to Mr. Vickers for motivating and slaying.
Cross is on!