Tuesday, October 12, 2010

CX Season

The Seattle Cyclocross season is in full swing and I have raced 6 times already.

StarrCrossed 45th place in the Cat 4 35+
MFG Big Finn Hill 8th place in the Cat 3/4 55+
MFG Issaquah 9th place in the Cat 3/4 55+
Seattle CX Evergreen 5th place in the Cat 4 55+
MFG 5 Mile Lake Park 11th place in the Cat 3/4 55+
Seattle CX Beverly Park 4th place in the Cat 4 55+

My best placing was 4th at the Beverly Park School race. I don't have any pictures of the Beverly race because it was raining and my friendly photographer did not want to risk water damage to the camera. Just before I went to the start location, I talked to Chris (who raced in the first race) and he said there were places on the course that you could not ride or, running was faster than riding. It had rained all night and so the mud was really deep. If you were a very good bike handler and had plenty of power to motor through the mud, you did well. I did not fall off the bike but managed one recovery after another. I can remember one particular off camber downhill turn where I saved the front end big time. Later, I found out that the leader of our group took a big spill at the same location. I feel that my new tubular tires helped me keep the rubber side down. (25 psi in the front and 28 psi in the back)

Cyclocross racing is crazy. You start in a big pack (sometimes 80 riders) and race to the first obstacle whereby everyone bunches up. After the obstacle (run-up, barrier or mud hole), things thin out and you race to pass whoever is in front of you. Most of the time the 55+ year old group starts at the back of the 45+ group, so we don't get a clear shot at the first obstacle. The rest of the race involves bike handling and endurance. At the finish, you smile, catch your breath, and say it was fun.

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