Sunday, October 17, 2010

all, none, and some

roll call. where we at? lots of Durhamites made it out to Cary on Sunday for the first local cyclocross race. some familiar faces from the Wednesday night Forest Hills park practices, including the winners of the C race (Byron from Inland) and the A race (Paul who races for some bread company). Lots of the Tyler's/Garneau guys were out. Good representation from the Regulators and the Inland guys. But where were all the BCC guys? Of course, I wasn't expecting all of us to show, but there nearly none of us.

To be fair, I only heard about this race at the end of last week and didn't try too hard to rally people to attend. I was on the fence until Saturday afternoon, participating in only one of two days' worth of collegiate cx races in Winston-Salem. It was actually a pretty crazy course, about 2/3 hay field and 1/3 tight singletrack including a unridable combo of a creek crossing and muddy hill followed by a nearly-unridable steep descent into a heavily-padded tree, then back over the creek. I crashed kinda hard trying to ride this section on a warmup lap (I was just riding along, suddenly realizing that my front wheel had kinda lost momentum, and the next thing I knew, I was upside down, twisted through my bicycle). That race strung out into a long line and after getting behind someone who forgot how to clip into their pedals at the start line, needed to slowly pick my way back from last place. I rode okay, but was fighting a losing battle against dudes who were long gone by the end of the first lap.

The Cary course was interesting. Some grass, some singletrack, some gravel. But pavement; none. It began with a mad dash on loose gravel. Lots of sideways sliding, some folks went down, but surprisingly no major crashes. Then we were funneled into some freshly-cut, still rather lumpy singletrack. Not technical, but people were nervously trying to pass where there was no space and not trying hard enough not to crash where they should not need to try very hard not to crash. Then back to some gravel before a long, winding grass section, only slightly uphill, but enough so that it really made the legs burn. And repeat.

Since the course was kinda crit-like, my goal was to stay with the pack--the main group. I dug in at last wheel in the front group for the first couple of laps, jumping past dudes who looked about ready to pop or about ready to fall down. This went fine until our gang of ten broke in half, with me on the losing half. This half blew up and I tried to bridge up with Isaac (Three Peaks victor, formerly of Bicycle Chain fame) who dropped me and made the lead group, for a few laps before being spit back out. I yoyoed in no-man's land until rejoining with a group of 5 or so, which looked dangerously strong and seemed to be going dangerously slow. Before these other guys got the idea that they might be much stronger than me I launched an attack and broke up this group into a smaller, more tired, and possibly grumpier group. Sometime around this time I threw up. Just some. In my mouth.

Then some other stuff happened. Finally in a group of three the dude from the dentist team jumped. I couldn't close him down in the end, but held off the Mock Orange Bikes guy to take 6th. The few times I've been in the money, I make less than the entry fee. In terms of payout, I figured a 6th place would earn me none. However, the super special 6th place prize was a 6-pack of Carolina Brewing Company Pale Ale. I even had some extra to share in the parkinglot, but the BCC crew was nowhere to be seen.

So we'll rally for next weekend. The start of the NC series.


DukePirate said...

Sixer for sixth? That's as good as the fifth for fifth in the SS class.

Strong work.

Dave W. said...

where is the raleigh cross race Sunday? I didn't see any venue locale info on the website.