Saturday, November 8, 2014

Paradise Cross Frenzy 2014

This race and this blog should get married.  Bikes and beers. Racing at a brewery. I like it. a lot. Except that this course wasn't all that great for me.  But its all good, its not about results for me in CX.  Just fun and a good workout and this delivered.

Even though this race is put on by a local shop (Paradise Sports) I feel like they should make it more obvious that the race takes place at the Harpoon Brewery.  I feel like this race should have been way better attended.  It wasn't a ghost town but I mean come on guys ITS AT A BREWERY.

Course was trending a bit more towards grass crit, probably the first real 'power' course I've done so far.  Longer straightaways, false flats, pretty much all grass, one bigger run up followed by an off camber descent into more straightaways...180....straightaway...180...repeat.  Don't get me wrong I'm not saying the course was bad in any way I just don't have the mass to throw down on grass.  Now if this course had been wet? Oh on.

It was a pretty small 4/5 field, maybe 33 pre-reg'd(?).  No staging or call-ups so I ended up second row, probably about where I would have been anyway.  I think race predictor had me at about 13th. Start was fast and then it was pretty much full gas, very little recovery the rest of the race.  Most of the turny bits were very quick and offered no respite before you were out of the saddle and hammering down the next straightaway.  There were a few punchy little climbs as well that did a great job of murdering my legs.

The steep run up was fun, I'm finding I'm much faster getting up stuff like that then most others.  The off camber descent was interesting.  As the race went on it got a bit choppy and because you are just remounting at the top you have to be real sure you hit your pedals otherwise things got sketchy fast.  One of my middle laps I remounted too fast / sloppy and had a hilarious descent of almost exploding about 4 times.

I was in the front group of about 10(ish) for the first lap and a half.  I was on the tail of the group getting whipped around a bit as I would try to hold wheels in the straightaways only to get jammed up in the corners and then have to sprint back on.  Eventually that rubber band snapped and they drifted away.  I was solo in no mans land for a bit until a few guys caught me.  Spent the rest of the race yo-yo'ing with a few of them.

It felt like a really long race.  Probably because it was so fast.  Felt like we ended up doing maybe 6-7 laps instead of the usual 4-5.  No real idea where I ended up (stuck around for a bit but never saw results)  Maybe top 15?  I believe I made 2 passes on the last lap, one on the run up and another just after the barriers.

Reg came with a free beer wooden nickel which was awesome, way better than a t-shirt (mountain bike promoters take note).  I'm fairly certain I'd do this one again.  Although I'll pray for rain next year.

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