Sunday, October 10, 2010


Greetings from Frankfurt Germany. I'm here for a weeklong tour visiting key dealers in Germany and Austria followed by a side trip to the first UCI World Cup cross race of the season in Aigle, Switzerland. The plan is to take in a little sightseeing and then meet up with Stu Thorne and the rest of the New England Cyclocross Mafia at the end of this week. And if all works out, a little face time with Stybar.

But first, let me back up to Saturday morning. Bags are packed for my Euro trip and what better way to prepare for my late afternoon flight then to head up to Interlocken for the 2nd race of the Boulder cross series. This course is pure cross-heaven, and definetely the exception, not the rule of courses here on the front range. Interlocken is cruelly configured to demand maximum power output with some elevation gain and deep, thick , wet grass this year. It hadn't even dawned on me that the potential for mud would even exist. I hadn't installed spikes, neglected to throw my mud wheels in the car, it's been so dry here lately that I had planned on a fast grass crit. I couldn't have been more wrong.

Not sure if the grounds keeping staff had purposfully left the sprinklers running all night, but the track was completely saturated and SLOW. My warm-up had my heart rate pegged and I had serious thoughts about making a $25 donation to the organizers and going home. Again a huge 35+4 field ( I would have chose the 45+ group if I didn't have a flight to get to in the afternoon ) 125 guys strong and no call-up ( again ) since I had missed the Xylinx opener. I had a deep forth or fifth row start position and was witness to one very ugly first lap. Our hoard was sprinting to the first corner only to come to a screeching halt into our first bottleneck traffic jam. Thankfully the field strung out pretty quickly and then it was time to get busy passing. My goal was to get myself up to those riders who had earned a front row starting position.

It's always surprising to me how a course feels at warm-up vs. race pace. Perhaps I had hit my stride a 2 laps in but the course felt really fast, really fun ( techincal and muddy ) and I was moving through the field as best I could. A few of the techical bits through the sand pit got the best of me on the last lap as I was coming unglued a bit and manged to work my way up to 20th position by the end. A respectable Boulder series position however I was sill having some "what if" moments thinking about my placing with a better starting position or less errors on the course. But regardless, I'm super pleased with the effort I put in and that always puts me in the right state of mind to set off on another excursion. Be satisfied with the effort.

Couple of other things:
Because Greg Kellers enthusiasm for all the cross cannot be tempered, he was kind enough to serve as a megaphone for my work at Avid. Read it here

Also a Matt Pacocha review in Bike Radar here

Thanks for reading

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