This past weekend brought the final races of 2013, with the State Championships on a great dedicated course in Castlerock. Kudos to John Haley for a truly top notch event--he even arranged the weather such that the course had a good mix of frozen, muddy, and tacky conditions! The start straight was a brief section of pavement before a 90 deg right, 90 deg left, then down a steep, frozen hill, so the hole shot would definitely be critical!
Bard kicked off the weekend with an early start on Saturday. It was freezing cold, and the 10 minute delay on the start line didn’t help with anyone’s warmup! He got bogged down a bit at the aforementioned start and had to spend the rest of his race picking off other riders. He ended up in 28th overall, but felt it could have been a lot better with a clean start.
By the time Carl and Rob went off in the afternoon, things had warmed up and started to melt. Even between their preview laps at 11:30a and their race start at 1:40, the course had softened up considerably.
I love this course, and definitely felt like the conditions favored me, so despite my 4th row callup in a huge field, I was psyched to race! I got pinched a bit at the first turn and lost some spots, dropping somewhere into the mid 30’s, but when we came to the descent, I jumped out of the line and bombed past 5-6 guys. By pit 1, I had climbed into the mid 20’s with some aggressive riding. It felt like I had people cheering almost everywhere on the course and that kept me on that gas, consistently moving up every lap and riding my best of the season. In fact, my last 3 lap times were exactly the same—I’ve never done that before! In the end, I rolled in 17th, satisfied with that result.
Without many cross cup points, Rob started towards the back of the field and had to deal with traffic the entire time. He ended up with a solid showing in 60th on the day, in conditions that didn’t really play to his strengths.
Day 2 of the races kicked off with Errin in the SW3 race. Having just catted up, she didn’t have any points for call ups, which definitely put her on the ‘back foot’ on this start critical course. Despite that, she rode solidly, moving up every lap, to finish smack dab mid pack, 14th out of 28 riders—a great result!
After a brief preview period, mid day, the stage was set for the Elite races, with Kristal lining up in a stacked field for the Women’s Open. Plenty of local pros were there, along with all the usual fast women we see every weekend. Kristal hadn’t been feeling well all morning, but lined up hoping it was just nerves and would pass once the race started. Unfortunately, that was not to be as she continued to feel worse as the race went on, finally dropping out on lap 3 when she couldn’t continue. That was a disappointing conclusion to her main season, but will just stoke the fires further for January’s races!
Next up are the Altitude Adjustment races the first weekend of January, then it’s straight on to Nationals in Boulder! We wish everyone a Happy Holidays! Thanks for reading.