West Chester Cross (PACX #2)

23 Oct

After a bit too many beers the night before we stumbled out of the house early-o-clock and loaded up the car behind schedule to make it to West Chester for the 10am cat 3/4 Mens B race. We got to the new venue, got bikes assembled and tried to get a lap or two in before the start of the cat4 race. First impression was the course was long. It has some long straight, long slight inclines that were pretty slow when tacky in the morning, and lots of off camber jib-jabs and big rollers. It was refreshing to have a course much different than anything else we had raced so far in the season.

Few photos of the course:

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After cheering for the mens C race a bit, a few of us went to go warm up. I was a bit weary to warm up on the course after the email talking about no pre-riding so we rode on the road. I went to find a bathroom and came back just missing my call-up but luckily able to still slide in to the front row. The start was all asphalt with a straight to a fast 90 degree right hander then a 90 deg left hander which put you onto the finish line. I was able to get the hole shot and led past the finish up the grass incline that led onto the course. At some point after my pre-ride they had put a barrier in on an off camber run-up that I don’t think was finished earlier in the morning. The re-mount area was on the side of the hill and a bit choppy. I tried to re-mount a bit quickly and a rider ran around and I let the decaffeinated cyclist rider pass on the way down the back side of the hill.

About half way through the lap another rider bridged up and took the lead for a bit. The three of us were riding together until the finish area when I think he blew up. The rider from decaffeinated cyclist and me were trading spots for a bit. Eventually Miles and Caleb caught up to us as I was leading and being a bit cautious, ie going slow. I had blown out my tubular sidewall the week before at Cooper River Cross and was still getting a feel for the clinchers I was on as I threw them on the night before. I have the tendency when I start towards the front to ride more cautiously trying to hold my position rather than extend the gap. This isn’t the case when I start towards the back as Im trying to pass as many people as I can and make up time. I need to change this way of thinking, maybe next race. Anyways I’m at the front of out group of 4 for then next 2 laps, nothing much happens in this time. Heading into the last lap Miles makes a move and I expend some energy to grab his wheel to save energy on the long straight into the finish line. Were all still together going through the first 1/4 of the course. A couple turns before the single barrier to mud pit the three of them swarm me and I am now sitting in forth in the group. As the next few turns come I start to fade back a bit with a small gap between them and me. I didn’t mentally have the gusto to make that last push to get back to them. I should have really pushed my tires a bit more as there was no one close behind us but I didn’t. I rolled into the finish losing three spots in the last half of the course and ended up in 4th for the day. Lots to work on still, mostly my cornering but all in time.

I got paid a solid $15 cash and got a bottle of wine. I will say that the lady already drank 9/10th of the wine already though…

The lady wasnt in the mood to shoot photos… i had to take it to the instagram.  Thanks Bob!

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Podium shot stolen from brotherMotherKoas.

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Results

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Fast forward a bit and it was time for the womens 1/2/3, womens 3/4, and SS not so fun race. Usually the SS races are a good time but at West Chester there was no beer allowed due to school property and there were some heavy hitters out there. Meh, I was still ready to dick around. The lady was doing the ¾ race that went off a minute or two in front of us so I was hoping to catch up to her, then do a bit of GoPro filming.

Things started fast like I expected and I caught up to Pete from Bikesports wheel. I remember a guy in a orange shirt on a cruiser bike CRUSHING it in front of us. We talked a bit and made fun of the fast guys, then I got too wild and dropped a chain. #Lame. I got heckeled when this happened but it didn’t stop me. I made back a spot or two then saw the lady fumbling on a hill. I thought she had dropped a chain to I gave her a push. I then realized she fell on her knee and wasn’t looking so hot. Her marathon is coming up in the next couple weeks so I suggested stopping and calling it a day. We both ended up with a big old DNF for the womens ¾ and SS race respectfully. All in a days work.

We did then get to watch some teammates racing cross for the first time. Always great to see people out and having a blast on a borrowed bike. Now I just need to find a 50cm cross bike… Maria was crushing it and got 5th in the womens 1/2/3 race!

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Womens/SS Race:

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We watched a bit of the Mens A race then headed for food at Su Tao. I at ea ton, felt shitty, then rolled myself to Wegmans for food and beer. The day was a little hectic but fun. I may take off next weekend from real racing since its been a while. Also Ill get the GoPro videos up in the next day or two.

Mens A race

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