Tuesday, January 24, 2012

End of a series, start of a season.

  This weekend ended the NCCX Cyclocross series, but started a new racing season for me.  I raced my first, of what I hope to be many, races in my new Cycle Works kit.  And what an eventful race it was.

   The first race in the new kit was the CX3 race at Orange County Speedway.  Rainy conditions meant slick technical sections and racing on the speedway provided fast drafting sections.  It was a good mix that made for lots of back and forth battles.  I fell victim to others sliding out on the off camber section on several occasions but kept managing to work my way back up.  I found that I was faster than most through the rooty, muddy trails but invariably I got behind someone that crashed, or crashed myself trying not to hit an out of control racer.  In the end I didn't end up making up too many positions where I should have been at my best.  At the end of the race I was muddy, bloody and bruised ...and 9th. 
   I felt pretty good for the SS race later in the afternoon.  I knew that I could do well and I was ready to hammer at the start.  Unfortunately I was woefully overgeared for the now sticky, soft, deep mud sections.  My options were standing and risk spinning or sitting with my weight back and grunting it out.  I ended up in a 3-way battle for 2nd but couldn't hold on for the final kick to the line.  So, 4th on the day it was.

   Sunday's race at Bur-Mil Park was slick, but less muddy (and a lot colder) than Saturday.  Apparently I bent my rear derailleur hanger on my geared bike somewhere along the way.  I struggled to a 14th place finish on a bike that really didn't want to be in any particular gear and certainly not the gear I wanted it to be in.  I was a little over-geared, or perhaps over-fatigued for the SS race.  I maintained contact with the leaders but wound up 5th on the day.  Good enough to secure the overall SS points awards.

   I can't thank my team enough for the support they've already given me.  It means a lot to race for a team that is there to race and do well.  That they have welcomed me aboard is a huge honor.  I will do my best this year to represent them well.  Whatever happens, it's going to be an amazing year!

See you on the trails!

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