10/24/10

DCCX 2010


Most photos by Jon Janis
As the captain of DCMTB, DCCX is more than just a race for me. It's our team's way to give back to the biking community by putting on the best event that we can. Yet again, I think that we have succeeded, having over 700 racers and shattering the MABRA record of 80 women at our race. Mother nature came through as well (for the fourth year running) with sunny skies and mild temperatures. A big thank you to all the sponsors--Dogfish Head Alehouses (for tasty beer and pourers), Family Bikeshop (Jonathan rocks), Bobby's Pottys (we had to go big this year, with 7 porta-johns that still all became out of order by the end of the day), the Dutch Club (for making great pancakes). Stickyfingers Bakery, and Joe Foley Photography. Special thanks also to the Armed Forces Retirement Home for allowing us to use the beautiful grounds.
Men's Masters ¾
Well, I was worried a little bit going into this race.  I had been working on the race and on my feet all day Saturday, and then was working the VIP team tent area in the morning.   One good thing with having your own race, you get an ok start position.   I was starting next to Mark D. from the team.  I got a pretty good

s tart(which I seem to be able to do usually)  Right before going to the finish line for the first time, I was able to get to Bruce B’s wheel.  I had the opportunity to pre ride the course a  Bruce had not been able to pre ride, and was not riding as smooth as I was.  I got a little impatient and passed Bruce.  This would be short lived as Bruce passed me, then Bill of CXHairs passed me as well.  Around the 2nd or 3rd lap my back blew up.  At that point I was in trouble, I went from like 17th to the 31st position I ended up at.  I guess Gwadzilla was behind me closing in cause he finished right behind me.   I did ok, but when you loose 15 places you are not going to be too happy.
Tandem
This was the race that I had been thinking about leading up to the race.  I had originally planned to do the race with Sara.  After pre-riding the course, Sara and I thought it best for our relationship that we didn’t ride it together.  I got Matt E. from my team who was a great sport.  He is a really strong rider, and fit the tandem great.  Matt, and I had pre-ridden the course on Sat so we had an idea what we were doing.  We had a slow start, but by the first turn one tandem blew up, and we were in 3rd place.  At the barriers our technique came into play and we were in 2nd.  The Toms boys caught back up to us, and we were doing ok until we messed up at the stairs(which we did good in practice).  At some point we lost a pedal and some time getting it back on.  I think after that on the backside of the course we saw one of the tandems roll a tubular(don’t use tubulars unless you have defense grade adhesive!)  We lost some time on the uphill pavement, then lost our pedal again.  We fixed it with a pedal wrench, but the damage was done we went into steady mode.  The best part on the tandem was doing the bricks to the downhill, we were doing 33mph there.  I had a good time on the Tandem and will hope to do it again this CX season.
DCCX has gotten better every year, and this year I was really happy with the course, and my little off road addition to the mix.  Sara was great for coming out for the day as she was reading when she could and watchin’ her man do his thing too.
 

10/20/10

18 hours of Scouts Honor

From August
With the Boys with the FAT $200 for winning, unfortunately that didn't cover registration.

I have been lame and not been keeping up my blog for my 3 loyal readers......   Well I will be doing updates this week, and try to be on it for the next couple of weeks if I am racing.


I have done Scouts Honor I think like 4-6 times.  I might have only missed one year of it.  I did the first one at Poorfarm Park in Ashland which was cool.  They have had Scouts Honor at the boy scouts camp for the last several years, and I think it is a great venue.  The course this year was even longer then last year with around 12 miles.  I think they have hit the sweet spot for course length right about an hour.  The only thing I would say against the course, I don't know if it was new cut trail or weird drainage, but there were some slow sections in there even though it had been really dry.  Hopefully it was new cut trail and next year it will be fast and smooth like the rest of the course.

-before the race:
So we decided to go down the day of, and I was going to have Sara come down at the end of the race and drive me to my parents.  Things did not got to plan, I had Jonathan pick me up at my work parking lot and he went all the way to Annapolis to get Leland.  We got to the traffic jam known as 95 and were running late to make the start.  Mike K. was down in Williamsburg with his family and was to meet us there. Mike got there, and ended up having to do our first lap, as we got our registration.  If Mike wasn't there it would have been a little dicey.
-the race
Mike did a good lap having us around 5th over-all, after the first lap.  Jonathan went out and ripped a crazy fast time like 5 minutes faster then Mike which put us in 2nd over-all 1st for 4-man.  I went out did a pretty good lap, and then Leland went out and pulled a good one as well.  After the first laps we were into the darkness(race starts at 4pm).  I was rocking my second lap when I had my front tire burb on me after I railed  a turn with a dip in it.  I had to refill the tire a little bit, so that cost me some time.  We did consistant laps through the night with that 3-5 stretch being people's slowest laps.  Jonathan was the rockstar of the race, he was just killing it the whole way.  I wanted a sub 1:00 for my last lap and was able to pull that off.  Jonathan took the only 5th lap, instead of Mike since he left to go back to Williamsburg to his family. 
Notes:

-Good course, alot of ups and downs.  I made a point to stay in the middle ring, and stand out of the saddle when I needed to.
-The Voodoo worked great in it's 3x9 geared with FT suspension. ( usually run this bike Rigid, and SS)
-Getting first was nice, and we grabbed 2nd over-all the 1st place duo team is semi-pro. 
-I was riding with my saddle more forward then usual, but I really like to be "on-top" of the pedals for a fast course. 
-We all did the race, on the bare minimum, got food on the way down(would eat half later that night) Jonathan brought the boiled potatoes which really helped.  I didn't bring a tent but just rested in the chair with my lite sleeping bag.
-Bring bug spray next year!

-Have to see how the 2011 summer turns out, but I could see myself here once again.

10/10/10

Iron Cross 8 the X X X edition

From 10-10-10

Iron Cross

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Iron Cross
Oh you beast, I think I know you and then you go and change on me.  The Iron Cross race is something that any biker who has a CX bike should do.  The race is between a SM100 kind of race, a dirt road race, and a mountain bike race.  The nice thing about the race is that it is short enough that most people finish within an hour of almost everyone else.  This was my race this year. I had broken my pinky in May, so this was my objective race.  I started training late, cause I moved from Arlington to DC this July.  So it wasn't until late August that I started to get the miles and rides in (the OMG-Shepherdstown stuff is great training).  By September, I was getting a good amount of rides, and I had done Ed Sanders, and AVC cross before Iron Cross.  My back was starting to act up even with those short events, so I had no idea what was going to happen at Iron CX.
An Unexpected Partner
Two of my DCMTB teammates Matt E. and Mark P. went up a day early and stayed in one of the cabins.  I am thinking that will be the ticket for next year.  The unexpected partner was Sid.  I haven't ridden with Sid in a long time so I was surprised to hear that he was going to be doing Iron CX.  He rented a CX bike, and I gave him a helping hand by letting him borrow a set of 38mm WTB interwolfs.  This tire is not made anymore, but it is the perfect tread for this event.  I might try and run them tubeless next year.  I ran them this year with Latex tubes.  So Sid and I met up at Scots run near 495 at 5:15 am and got on the road.  We got up there pretty quick with plenty of time to spare.
Pre-Race
This year the weather was warmer then when I did it in 2007.  I was worried about clothing, but I settled on wool bib shorts, knee warmers, arm warmers, jersey and vest.  Sid and I met up with Matt and Mark, and we were able to put our stuff in their cabin.   I planned bags with CO2 and tubes at both stops just in case.We talked about the course, and people were getting nervous.
The Start, Lippencote Trail, to Wigwam
Matt started fast and I was on his wheel, but then we switched.  We got to the open road/trail, and Matt went speeding ahead.  Mark eventually caught up to me as well and passed me.  I had only been racing for 30 minutes and I was already starting to feel my back.  I knew it was going to be a rough day.  I was climbing ok, but I think this year my descending was going great.  I felt really comfortable on the downhills. The road sections were not going well for me. I think that next year I will have to work on doing more road riding to work on my high-end speed.  We did a paved road climb, and then it was on to the first real singletrack.  One of the keys to racing this race is top levers on a CX bike.  Going up the trail, I was riding smooth and slowly catching up to and passing some people.  Once the trail went downhill I started doing even better.  I somehow ended up behind two other mt. bikers or skilled riders, cause the three of us passed like 20+ people on the trail.  We were going over logs (some over a foot high) and I made it past the part in 2007 where I walked.  Now I was in front of 30+ people who had previously been in front of me.  Just as in 2007, everyone was doing pacelines that were going too fast for me to even get in on.  Matt caught up to me again (I had passed him) and passed me again.
Wigwam to Aid 3
The good thing about having done the race was that I knew how much Wigwam sucks.  This year I carried my bike across my back, with it kinda resting on my camelbak.  I think this was the right way to do it, but I think that if you could have a bungee to hold on to so that your hands are not in a weird position, it would be bettter.  Might work on that.  Once at the rest stop, I took a minute to take off my vest, arm warmers, and knee warmers, put them in my drop bag, and fill up my bottle.  Matt was just in front of me. I caught up to him and he was going a little slower, so I passed him.  The next downhill was sick, I was riding it fast like 45 mph and felt comfortable (my back not so much), but was thinking if I wreck this is going to be bad.  At one point I took a turn a little too hot and ended off the road, but I was fine.  I dropped some people going down the mountain, but the problem with that speed is you can miss your next turn!  So I went left at this Y and felt that there should be someone near me.  So I turned around and saw some people up the road going into the woods.  So I was now behind like 10 people I had passed.  I saw Matt again, who was cursing me, the race, and his lot in life it seems.  This was a new singletrack section, where my top levers, and 34-32 gearing was coming in handy.  I was passing people and hooked up with a mountain biker.  I actually passed the mountain biker on the downhill--pretty amazing.  I was then mostly on my own to aid 3.
Aid 3-Fin
So at the aid station, I filled up my bottle again, and had a cup to go as well.  This was the start of the big ass climbing.  I had 2 interesting experiences. One was with Todd B. from the SS Outlaw crew was rocking it on his SS.  I was climbing steady in my small gear as he was mashing away.  We both said that our legs were getting some twinges.  At some point Todd must had had both legs cramp, cause he fell into a heap on the side of the fire road.  The other person I rode next to was a beast of a rider.  She was the 4th or 5th place female (and I later found out she was 51 years old--go her). She was riding a bike almost like a touring bike.  She was breathing up a storm, pushing a big ass gear. and she would pedal, then walk, pedal then walk.  I was just going constant (slowly).  We went back and forth, with her going in front until she had to walk, and me catching back up to her because I was still actually pedaling my bike. She then left me as it leveled out at the top.  Once it started down hill I dropped her hard.  I finally got to the last singletrack section.  This is the funnest part of the course, but you are usually too tired to like it.  The singletrack seemed longer, and more technical then before.  I knew I was running slower, cause last time I rode most of the last walk up.  After going though the last singletrack, I heard my tire rubbing.  I looked at it and I had broken a spoke (I found out later it was 2). So I was thinking about what to do. I didn't want the tire to take off all my paint on the bike. I found the bad spot and just whacked it a couple of times, and that seemed to true it enough not to hit my frame.  Now I had no rear brake though.  The last pavement downhill was trickier then last time, since I only really had a front brake.  My wheel was so messed up it made the bike do a lurching motion.  I did the last 2-3 big rollers, then back to the finish.  I made it just under 5 hours.  I achieved my goal, but I thought I was faster. I think that most people's times were slower cause of the added singletrack (which is a good thing).

Thoughts
  • This race should be only CX bikes like the Three Peaks Race
  • Next year if I got up with some people I will try to have us ride as a group until the first singletrack
  • I need to work on leg speed for the road sections
  • I should make a small bungee thing to help hold the bike for Wigwam, and then dump it at the aid station
  • I plan to ride my stans wheels next year 
  • Thinking about doing a spring training camp and doing the ride then
  • Seems like most roadies were riding mountain bikes, and it was mountain bikers on the CX bikes.
  • I think the Camelbak and one water bottle is the way to go, only had to fill it once.




http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_BpKw0MaNhko/TLRKIrE9YYI/AAAAAAAAAEM/ympmGgFO9f8/s1600/IC+GPS+2.jpg
A guy shot a video of the race, the cyclocross stuff you see that is only at the very beginning.  You can see Matt E. @ 1:52 on the HUGE hike a bike.  and you can see me at 2:02 at the rest stop eating a GU.  Also I zip on by on the trail at 2:25 (had taken a wrong turn so had to pass a bunch of people I passed once already)