Thursday, November 24, 2011

Northeast Velo Cross

With Thanksgiving break on approach, UVM cycling took the weekend off from traveling, leaving race plans up to individual riders.  I traveled down with Bobby, from IK2GO Sports, to Londonderry, NH to compete at the Northeast Velo Cross.

Keeping an eye of the riders ahead, the velodrome was
a great place to mount an attack and make up ground.
The race was early.  Almost too early to wake up on time.  With the help of coffee, bacon, and eggs, I yanked myself from bed and venture down I89 to the race.  Upon arriving, little of the course was visible from parking.  Our first impression was that the race would take you around the Northeast Velodrome, and drop you in the center.  Once we kitted up, we were able to view the rest of the course.  From the Velodrome, the race went into the center field, where two sets of barriers and a water hazard were placed in the way of the riders.

Deep breath, now run.
After clearing the second set of barriers, riders ventured over the wall of the velodrome and into the woods where the course began a striking resemblance to mountain biking.  Roots and mud made up a good section of the course.  Taking riders of bridges and into a quick run-up coming from an off camber right handed turn.  Here, riders were able to power past each other.  With a quick remount, the run-up followed by a gradual descent turned into a strategic place to mount an attack and eat through riders like the fat kid in all of us does in the vicinity of cheesecake.
Whoop.  Whoop.  WHOOP!
Immediately after the woods, riders were tossed into the whoopdy-doos of the Northeast BMX park.  At race speed, it was harder to keep the bike grounded.  It was very important to keep contact with the ground, or establish a rhythm to keep balance before heading back into the velodrome for the end of the lap.

I managed to secure 10th in the race.  After not being able to shift into the big ring, I lost contact with places 9, 8, 7 and 6 ahead of me and was forced to sprint in the little ring to hold on to the 10th place spot.  This coming weekend, I am planning to take off and enjoy a few training rides.  Next on the calendar is Ice Weasels Cometh with UVM Cycling.  There are only a few weeks left in the CX season, and just a few more months until the beginning of Collegiate Road.  With only a little time in between the two season, there will be a brief rest period, and then onto building base onto what is already being built during cross.
Arc hard, ride fast, go plaid! and a Happy Thanksgiving!

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