This New Year, I spent it racing. Racing cross at the Chicago Cross Cup’s New Years Resolution. Man was it fun. Being a special New Year race, I decided to bust out the embro and fancy it up with glitter. This time I came prepared with all three levels of DZ Nuts InHeat and dishsoap to wash the stuff off when I was done. Becky raced first, and at the start of her race it was sunny and 47 degrees. So some medium temp InHeat it was. With a boat load of glitter. Red and silver. Everything was going fine until during the race before mine, the temp dropped 20 degrees and I was now wishing for the high heat InHeat. It seems there is a time and a place for the hot stuff, and it was now. But too late for that. It is race time. We got staged by our cyclocross.com points, which I have very little of, so I was in back. I kinda like the back. I get to pass more people. Those folks in the front usually are faster than me.
The start is down pavement (I like this about UCI races), around the cart path and onto the golf course. Yes, we are racing on a golf course. Fast, flat, and with all the rain and temperatures staying above freezing, very muddy. We tore the up this course really good like. Some huge mud pits formed around the bike pit and continued to grow as dirty bikes got power washed. Mud is fun. But as I learned a race ago, Red cassettes suck in the mud. And I forgot to swtich mine out. So by the second lap, I was down to two usable gears in the back. My granny gear, and 7. Other than that I could switch in front. For most of the course it was doable. But for the pavement it was time to stand and deliver the big ring and 7 to not get passed. This was becoming more and more easier for me, seeing as I quit smoking and could now actually breathe while I was racing. Hot damn! What a difference oxygen makes.
|Get up, stand up. Stand up on your bike.|
And for the first time racing all season. I didn’t get lapped by those fast dudes. My last race (Afterglow) Barry Wicks & Super Fast SRAM Guy got me right before the finish. I was a lap down, but it looked like I came in 3rd. I’ll take that.
|Bill Draper takes badass pictures. Check out his work.|
I love cross. Looking forward to next season already.