Monday, October 28, 2013

Crossasaurus Awesome CX

After last week's "running fest", and the combination of the first cold snap of the year + DARK ASS mornings, my cycling motivation was sinking like the Titanic.  My legs seemed to recover well after feeling totally trashed the day after the Hat Trick.  Racing cross last weekend was the last thing on my mind.  Until a "bonus" opportunity for an afternoon ride with Greg on Friday.  Amazing what a generally easy spin on cross bikes on the road in the fall sunshine does for your psyche.  No sooner did I finish the ride and I was signed up for Crossasaurus Awesome, a short half hour drive away, on Sunday.

Despite a chilly start to the morning and some wind, it shaped up to be a great day.  The course was revamped (to my liking), taking out some of the L.O.N.G. straightaways to nowhere that had once defined it.  Slightly shorter with some additional turns and flow that rewarded smooth cornering with a couple of flat power sections were the name of the game.  Start was much better as well.  Hats off to the Ciclismo folks!

Got my pressure dialed in and had some decent warmup laps.  Despite missing both PACX races last week, my finish at Town Hall Cross earned me a front row call up.  I flubbed my clip in off the start but managed to hit the first turn about 7th wheel. 
Not my best clip in off the gate, but it turned out to be a decent start.
 I made one quick pass and hit the steep dirt ride up in 6th, everyone made it up there clean without any dismounts.  Through the off camber sections I heard a loud noise and glanced back to see carnage.  This opened up a huge gap behind us.  We had the chance, it was time to work that gap.  My teammate Greg had a great start, he's been riding really well this year.  We held a train of 6 in the lead pack through the tight stuff and into the sand.  I had a good dismount, run and remount and was able to get around Greg into 5th.  A few turns later Josh missed a shift and I snuck by him into 4th.
Now up to 4th, Josh is right behind me.
Josh is a great rider so I knew it would be tough to keep him at bay.  I tried to hit some smooth lines and get a gap ASAP, I didn't want to let the front 3 get away.  Once I got by Josh I pulled up to Joe who was in 3rd.  The laps were clicking by pretty quickly and the first two riders were a couple of seconds ahead and I was right with Joe.  By the 3rd lap we had opened up a large gap, I knew it was going to be tough to beat a veteran like Joe, but I was feeling pretty good and just nailing my corners while Joe was having a hard time flowing.  One thing was clear though, he had more power than I did in the straights.
Dirt ride up section, at this point we were all alone.

I was surprised how easily I was keeping Joe's wheel and actually started to look for the opportunity to pass. 
A set of REAL FUN sweepers, over a bridge and through the woods.  My favorite section of the course!

Coming out of the long gravel section I got a good drive in the sweeper after the pit and made an inside pass.  Then proceeded to tighten up and miss some lines.  Dumb ass!  We had closed the gap considerably to the front two with two to go, they saw us and responded. 

Joe responded as well and passed me back on the start / finish straight.  At that point I just didn't have the power to keep right on his wheel.  I rode that last lap hard and stayed within a second or two but just didn't have enough.  
Funny how some of your best days come when you expect the least.  I felt real strong for 6 of the 7 laps and I was real happy with my performance.  I took an easy week with no cross specific workouts, gave my body the rest it needed and I felt pretty good on race day.

Thanks for reading and thanks to Philly Ciclismo for a great race!

No comments:

Post a Comment