Saturday, October 22, 2011

Provincial Cyclocross 2011

Most amazing weather for a race late October!

At the whistle, Pepper Harlton lead a fast pace with me latching on and Chantel Widney aggressive to take the inside corner in front of me. Shantel Koenig had a strong effort up the steepest section of the hillclimb breaking in her Van Dessel. I swooped down the descent just ahead of her. Pepper slowly bridged away, with Chantel stopping with a mechanical.

The approach to the sandpit was fast. My plan was to run tight hugging the inside. The speed off the bike was scary launching me halfway running at bike speed and just a few quick steps in the sand before remounting. Could easily bite it at this spot.
sandpit techniques - photo Municyclist Chris Hubick
Just as planned, I had a smooth run thru the sandpit , with Shantel riding on my right. Soon after Shantel’s bike had tire issues.

Just 50m around the corner a barrier came quick when my heartrate was still high from remounting from the sandpit.
Height! photo by speedyskateskier Jean Valiquette
 Cool to find out Pepper had been riding over the barrier. Something I aspire to do.

I chilled in the Agitator circular snail path to catch my breath. Once past the switchback corner, I picked up the speed again riding out of the saddle. On the long pavement section, I hoofed as hard as could.
Strong ITU racer Chantel Widney - photo Mark Kay

Pepper was in the distance. Put my own effort to make distance from the women that would be working their way back to me. Then my shifter started teasing me (had sand issues last Sunday’s race) and it just stopped working. I gave in pretty quick that I would have to singlespeed the race again… then, the shifter started working again!
Shantel with the inaugural race for the Van Dessel
Chantel was back in with a happy bike and strongly catching up. Within another lap Chantel was mighty close. I just started into the Agitator and heard sounds of rider and bike skidding on the grass. Out of the Agitator, I hoofed taking advantage of the extra seconds for Chantel to get in action again.
good Cross Face - photo Jean Valiquette
Squeaked in 2nd within a super strong Elite women’s field with a few awesome contenders from Calgary missing.
pre-race smiles! - photo Municyclist Chris Hubick

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