Thursday, October 30, 2008


Boss Cross #1 Saturday!

It's almost here, this weekend is Boss Cross #1. The race is at Tiffany Springs Park and will be the Nationals Preview Course! Registration begins at 9:00 and racing starts at 10:15! See you there.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Consistency Counts

I've been very pleased with my racing so far this cross season. No wins yet, but I have been very consistent. Last weekend was the Boulevard Cup at Wyandotte County Park. Absolutely beautiful fall day with a good wind and a good course. There were some soft spots in the course that turned muddy as the laps went on, but for the most part it had some nice fast sections. This was another large field, so getting 6th out of 40+ I was pleased. I had a better start, but can't seem to hang with the lead group on the first couple laps. But, I continue to race stronger and pick riders off as the race goes on.
I've been sick going on 16 days now. Today was the first day that I actually felt good. I'm still not sure if I'll race Sunday after our first Boss Cross race or not.
This past weekend was another new 2-day race up at Smithville. After a very wet week, and cooler temps I expected it to be a mud fest, but the ground soaked up the rain quite well. Props to Mr. Locke for a very solid course. I didn't feel strong in the soft sections by the barriers, but the rest of the course was cool. Once again another slow start, followed by a lap of pinning it to make the lead break. I was able to use my strength in the corners to pass riders then accelerate on the straights. We had a strong 5 man group off the front and then came the attack by Matt Baugher. He pulled away so quickly that the rest of us just sat there. He held strong for a couple laps then his teammate Jason Knight bridged up to him. I tried to take Jason's wheel, but couldn't. But this got me into 3rd securely. I fought hard for the last 2 laps to keep 4-5 off my wheel and managed to pull away toward the end. Very happy with 3rd, but the 1-2 punch hurt.
Sunday was much of the same. I had a little better start and once again a break of about 8 was established toward the end of the first lap. There was a first lap prime, so there was no messing around. The course had been slightly modified and it took me a couple laps at race pace to get comfortable with the changes. Overall, I liked the second day's course better. I think it flowed better, and took out some of the monotony of the climbing. By the end of the second lap there was a 2 man break and I was leading the chase group. Each lap I continued to ride guys off the back of the group and before long there was just 3 of us chasing. As the race wore on I slowly pulled away from my group...not any closer to the leaders, but enough to establish 3rd place again. The last lap I turned myself inside out trying to maintain my position and possibly gain time on 2nd place. Overall I was happy with back-to-back third places. Consistency does count.
Time to get ready for our race. There is a beautiful wooded section that the likes of Bart, Sven, Niels, and Erwin (and any other Belgium) would be proud of.
See you all Saturday. Check out for further details.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Early season cross

The first few weekends of cross have been pretty good. I've been getting acceptable results, and even pulled home some cash one night. I've been sick for two straight weeks and not riding during the week, but racing hard on the weekends...and I don't seem to be getting any better. Imagine that!
The first weekend of local cross was in Lenexa at the sar-ko park. New venue, new course, and new racers. All of the field sizes have increased this year, and so has the speed of a lot of the dudes. It's an brawl to get the hole-shot, and I'm having to fight the whole race to get a top-10 finish. I love it! I got 8th at Lenexa, and felt like that's where I belonged. After a terrible start, and even worse first lap, I put in a hard effort to break into 10th and pick a few guys off during the middle part of the race. The last 2 laps I just held my position. I wasn't going to move up, and I sure wan't going to let the 2 guys behind me catch me. I actually had control of my spot in the race for the last 2 laps...if only that spot was 1st place instead of 8th.
The next local race was another new venue out in Topeka. This will be the race that all other races are compared to all year (until Boss Cross 1). It was a night race out at Hearltand Park race track, a groomed dirt track. Great venue, with a very fun a fast course. This was the first race where a 1x10 almost didn't cut it for me. Once again I got a slow start and had to play catch up the whole race. Fortunately, I had the power to pull away from the majority of the field. The dirt track was extremely fast, and I was nearly spun out in my 11t on every lap. The last lap I buried myself trying to catch first place and ended up in 2nd by about :06 seconds. Still made $50, so the drive to Topeka was worth it. The only bad part is after racing at 7:30pm and hanging around for a while, then driving home, I still hadn't recoverd for the 10:30 race the next morning in Lawrence.
The next day was Chris Cross out at Clinton Lake. Good sized field, and I had a much better start. Going into the second lap I was in 4-5 pulling away with the lead group. 20 meters after the pit I hit a huge hole in the course and my front brake seized up. My wheel wouldn't spin at all, and it took me til after the race to figure out what happened. I ran the 500 meters to the pit grabbed my pit bike and it was time to play catch up again. I managed to reel in 15 or so riders to pull of 16th place...not pleased. It turns out that my left brake/shift hood had moved and it pulled the brake cable tight. I guarantee that every bike I worked on that week was working flawless, but my own bikes never get the attention they deserve.
Until next time.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Levi's first ride!

Last weekend was the famed Octoginta ride in Lawrence.
Kathy and Levi and I spent the weekend in Lawrence enjoying the cycling and the local grub. After a sub-par result in the TT we cruised the streets, had a couple meals and sold some stuff at the swap-meet. Made enough money to make the weekend worthwhile. Saturday night I bolted a rod-like contraption into the Burley trailer and hooked Levi's car-seat into it. The extra 60 pounds behind the bike makes a big difference. Should make for some good training though. The FWC (future world champion) did great on his first ride. We pulled into the first sag right as he was getting hungry. Found Mom, ate a little breakfast and then headed back down the road. He got a little fussy one other time but for the most part he really seemed to enjoy the ride.