Cross is hard work for a lot of people. Every team on he circuit has a whole clan of workers and groupies. Almost, a Cross Circus, if you will. I’m lucky enough to be on a team where we may not have the largest team of mechanics but we have a big team of riders who are all willing to help one another. Which, is awesome because we’re all better friends because of it, but it makes the days at the races that much longer.
Bill looking on from the pit during Day 2.
Tom Price and Bill work their tails off from the beginning of the weekend to the end. Plus they both raced and pretty well at that! My body’s still a bit worn down from the weekend myself, and I didn’t work as much as either of the those boys.
I don’t think I’ll be racing for a week or two now. My back is still not 100% from the herniated disc and stress fractures. I was still supposed to be resting last weekend, but I had been training for a week and half and felt great. Not the best test, but I didn’t care. The race was in Fort Collins, and I couldn’t miss it.
Now, I’ll get some real time on my new Fuji Bikes and be flying by the time the Louisville USGP rolls around. Can’t be more excited to be back doing some real CX training!
Images credited to Mountain Moon Photography
The second day of the New Belgium Cup here in Ft. Collins promised to be TOTALLY different course conditions for every field throughout the day. For the races early in the morning we had mud in the corners and fast straight-aways, a huge change from our bone-dry and bumpy course the day before.
I got to the course and Tom had both bikes dialed and ready to rip the course. For the first time I was able to race on the new Challenge Limus mud tire. I had a front row start again today, pretty awesome being able to get clipped in and ride my own race from start-to-finish.
I was second on the hole-shot and held position for the first climb before dropping the leader and then looking back to see him picking himself up off the ground. I rode solo for for the next couple of laps, but my back started to seize when I saw 3 laps to go. The winner from yesterday was gaining quickly and took 10 seconds out of my lead in one lap.
Chasing in 2nd
I suffered to hold the leaders wheel when he came past, but managed to at least get a bit of a pull from him. The next person to come by was the Boulder Cycle Sport rider and him and I battled until 1/2 lap to go and I fell apart at the seams.
I punched it to hold 3rd from a hard-charging 4th place. My parents said that I won the popularity contest for people screaming my name on the tape. The MidWest Trek guys, the FCCT guys, and the smattering of Rams Cycling Guys were a huge support out there.
I’m wrecked after today. I was the earliest race for the team at 9:30 this morning. So I woke up at 7, got embro’d up and rode down to the course. You can’t beat having a UCI weekend in your backyard. I can literally go out my back door and ride bike path all the way to the venue. It was a long day working for the KCCX / Fuji presented by Challenge crew. Did lots of powerwashing.
The course didn’t get any moisture before my race so it was just as bumpy as ever. Luckily I didn’t have to deal with the dust, but I’m sure our 60+ person field churned it up. I started front row. I was 2nd into the hole shot and then took over for the descent, only to slam my saddle on the run-up and have to pit. Not an ideal start but in less than a lap I was back to the front and attacked our group of 4. Our small lead group would let a rider go then we’d close it down and this went on for a while. I ate it into the barriers on lap 3 of 5. Picked myself up and ran over the railroad ties, only to hear people yelling “your pedal!”
Not the time I lost my pedal, but it was at this run-up on the course.
My pedal had pulled out of my crank arm, which is what caused my crash too. I had a temporary slip of composure but I put myself back together and ran it up to the pit from the bottom of the hill. Got back on my A bike and finished out the race. Mostly just stayed in control but with 1 to go I ran into Brian Holcombe (VeloNews) and it was game on again. We took it to the line swapping blows the entire lap. I ended up edging him out by a wheel. 17th on the day. Better tomorrow.
The battle between Brian and myself during the final lap was AWESOME.
There’s a lot going on right now in the land of LVB. Well I should say that there is as much going on as possible without any actual cyclocross racing taking place, yet. Though I’ve learned plenty of times that the preparation and lead into ‘cross is much more stressful than actually racing. Luckily,running the CSU Rams Cycling team is much less stressful than it was 3 weeks ago, and that’s all thanks to the help I have with the team. I’m lucky enough to have about 4 people on the email list that I can count on to get all these little projects done. So, that I can handle “Big Picture issues,” insert Michael Scott voice here.
This weekend will be my racing debut (finally) with KCCX/Fuji 2011. Which is awesome, but I’ve yet to finish building either of my Fuji race bikes. Luckily, I think that teammate (and temporary roommate) Joseph is going to try and get my back-up bike running today so that I can take it out to the AIC Cross Ride tonight. Its kind of a scramble, but when your physical therapist says your spine is healed enough that you can race, you hurry and up get READY TO RACE. On top of the bike building shenanigans I’m also trying to coordinate our CSU Cycling Team Sock fundraiser. We’re selling a pair of CSU team issue socks and a raffle ticket for $10!!! The ticket will be worth some great prizes down the road as we continue to sell them leading into our Spring Fling Fundraiser. Which means I need to get a Silent Auction / Fundraiser organized by then… I shouldn’t let people know what I’m thinking, then noone would know what to expect.
O, and I just volunteered to get a tattoo reading, “Ram It!” if the team sells all 120 pairs of socks. Again, I shouldn’t be allowed to speak. Stay tuned for updates from the USGP of CX races here in Fort Collins, and I’ll try to get a video going too.
Thanks to everyone for coming out. Especially, CSU MTB Coordinator Aaron Cholewa, C. Hall Designs for the photographs, all the alumni who came up to volunteer, and all of our sponsors especially Jett MTB and Declare Custom.
This past weekend CSU Rams Cycling played host to collegiate racing as the Rocky Mountain Conference descended on our venue at Beaver Meadows Ranch Resort in Red Feather Lakes.
Matt Fox (CSU) rode to an impressive 4th place in the Men's A XC
The team got up to the venue on Friday afternoon to wrap up some last minute details and make sure all the courses were dialed. I shuttled the downhillers to the top of the course for a few runs and got to check out some of their course. It’s incredible watching an experienced downhiller tackle a course. We used the term, controlled falling, several times over the weekend, and it’s a fairly accurate description.
After a somewhat rowdy night around the campfire I awoke bright and early to register the riders at 6:30am. WE had over 50 riders in the downhill event, and even more in the endurance races. Saturday’s racing opened with a bang, Zack Allison and Matt Nunnelly took a 1-2 finish in the men’s beginner categories. Its rather hilarious watching two seasoned roadies whoop up on the mountain bikers, but I don’t think that the conference officials found it entertaining, and made Zack move up to the intermediate category. We did just as well in the women’s beginner races this weekend, taking the wins in both of the women’s endurance categories.
David O'Day (CSU) riding to 4th in the Men's A DH.
In the Cross-Country race on Sunday, Matt Fox took a respectable 4th place finish behind the onslaught that is Ft Lewis mountain biking. Joel Finkeldei also took second in the men’s intermediate race, securing his upgrade into the A field for this coming weekend. We couldn’t have asked for any better weather conditions. It was a bit chilly, but the racers found it to be ideal. We look forward to the years to come. Thanks to C. Hall Designs for the awesome photos!
- Joey Schusler (a Jett MTB sponsored rider) airing the 8ft drop in his final run Saturday.
So here’s my new attempt at a BLOG. I’m making a much better attempt at keeping this thing alive. Mainly because it’s for one of my classes this semester, which is pretty rad.
This week was Interbike, and this is the last year I’m not going. Anyway, here’s a couple of photos of the KCCX crew.
Sponsor Lazer Helmets had one of our kits on display in their booth. Pretty cool that sponsors are taking such an interest in us these days.
And there’s the new kit in action. Joseph had a strong race, but had some mechanical issues. Still top 40!