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Lower Allen Classic Cyclocross Race - 2006 - CycleOther

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Lower Allen Twp, Pennsylvania
United States
Verge Mid-Atlantic Cyclo-Cross
65F / 18C
Total Time = 31m 12s
Overall Rank = 45/47
Age Group = Men's Cat C(4)
Age Group Rank = 45/47
Pre-race routine:

Since this race was only a few miles from my house, I slept in, didn't eat much for breakfast and threw everything in the car at the last minute. I decided to go with full finger gloves, long sleeve jersey and tights. I froze last weekend and didn't want to repeat that. Threw in some Killswitch Engage to get a little wound up and drove off.
Event warmup:

Met up with my friend Mike and got onto the track to warm up. Rode about half of the loop before they called my Category to the starting line.
  • 31m 12s
  • 2.6 miles
  • 5.00 mile/hr

The Masters Men started off first followed by my Cat about 30 seconds later. Instead of a downhill start like last week, this one was uphill. Great. Well, the gun goes off and my right foot comes out of the pedal as I spin out my rear wheel on the loose gravel and I end my ignominious start by smashing my groin into the top tube of the bike. All while watching everyone leave me behind... *sigh* Just as I'm thinking "Well, that's a hell of a way to start - I just hope it's not some sort of omen," one of the ref's says the same dang thing... So I jump back on my pedals and start up the hill. There was a prologue section to add an extra half mile or so to the first loop and they were closing the yellow border tape as I was getting to it "Um, guys, can you gimme a second? Thanks." OK, that ordeal over, I finish out the prologue loop and get back to the starting area. I managae to get through the first part of the loop, over the double high speed barriers in good form - dismount, suitcase the bike and re-mounted almost like I knew what I was doing. One of the guys that works at my LBS yells out my name. Down around some wet, muddy grass, more off camber turns, SNADPIT!! I went in to it way too fast, but managed to ride through it OK. At this point, I thought I was going puke, get dizzy and pass out. I pulled over into the pit area and proceeded to drape myself over my handle bars to try to catch my breath. I went out way too hard and this course was challenging the snot of me so far. I look over my shoulder for oncomming traffic and headed back out onto the course. Going around some crazy turns, I see my brother and say high. A few seconds later I'm in another sandpit. My confidence buoyed by my 'stellar' (lucky) bike handling skills in the first sand pit, I entered this one just as hot and performed my best high speed aural (ear) sand sampling routine. OK, now my entire left side is covered in sand and I've buggered my front shifter/brake thing. I hammer the blessed thing back in line with my hand and take off. I manage some more of the course well, but misjudge a couple of run-ups that I tried to ride. Back in the pits for another few minutes to recompose myself and borrow a tire lever from one of the mechanics in order to shove my lungs back in my throat. At that point Mike's brother Barry walks up to me and asks if I'm racing. "Well, I'm supposed to be even if it doesn't look like it at the moment :)" I get back out on the course and keep riding. Some wet grassy spots are firm and easy to ride on, but there are some with mud underneath that feel like I'm riding on molases covered Velcro®. I misjudge another run-up and as I'm slowing to dismount, one of the elites/pros starts giving me a bunch of encouragement:

6 feet to go - "Don't you dare get off that bike man!"
5 feet to go - "Spin it out! Spin it out!"
4 feet to go - "Man up brother, don't quit now"
3 feet to go - "Spin it out! Spin it out!"
2 feet to go - "That's it, keep it going!"
1 foot to go - "You're there man!"

I made it! But now I have a crazy cramp in my left calf :) Finish riding out the rest of the loop and I get to the finish line with just under 10 minutes left to go in the race. Most everyone is on or just starting their fourth and last lap. I tell the ref that I'm calling it a day after my one pitiful lap. I wanted to try for another one, but I would have made the next race start 10 minutes late, so with the pride of a job poorly done, I collected my second 'cross DNF. Yeah!
What would you do differently?:

Lots of stuff. Not overdress would probably be the tip of the day.
Post race
Warm down:

Rode around a little bit to find Don, Barry, Cathy and Mike.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Compared to last week's 80 pounds of over weightedness, this week it's only 70 pounds, so that's better, right?

Event comments:

Excellent venue and quite a challenging course.

Last updated: 2006-11-01 12:00 AM
00:31:12 | 02.6 miles | 5.00 mile/hr
Age Group: 45/47
Overall: 45/47
Performance: Bad
Wind: None
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills: Below average
Race pace: Too hard Drinks:
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 2
Good race? No
Course challenge Too hard
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2006-11-14 3:58 PM

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Mechanicsburg, PA
Subject: Lower Allen Classic Cyclocross Race - 2006
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