Cyclocross Development Team: Velo’Cross

Velo’Cross Race Report

Northeast Velodrome, Londonderry NH.

November 19, 2011

Well attended this year by the New England Cyclocross community, Northeast Velo’Cross proved itself to be one of the highlights of this season’s race calender. The course was challenging and technical, with unique features including a BMX course and a Velodrome start/finish. The fields were stacked with the areas exceptional riders. The elite races attracted the area’s most talented and the cub juniors had the course to themselves in the mid day race. The day concluded with the popular single speed race as part of the Zanconato single speed cyclocross trophy series.

Photo by 1K2Go

Cross Development Team Race Reports

 

Emily Phillips

P/1/2/3 Women, 9th

Velo Cross was a good course for my skills. It had a little of everything but I have found over the season that technical courses are my strong suit. Firstly, it was really awesome to get started front row with all of the female NEBCers  in my race. The mood was relaxed and there was joking and a less tense atmosphere than at the Verge races, which I enjoy. My start was mediocre and I knew I would be passed quickly on the track by the likes of Sally Annis and the several other more talented female crossers. I traded places with a few women and finally settled in behind Julianne for the majority of the first lap. I tried passing her a few times in the woods but her mountain bike skills were holding me off. I caught her in the pump track and then she passed me again on the track. I think I passed her again near the barriers and spent some time chasing a Trek/Portsmouth rider who eventually got away. I, then, spent the rest of the race riding by myself. My one triumph was avoiding getting lapped by the leader. Overall, I came in 9th out of 14.

 

Julianne Oberle

P 1/2/3, DNF- Crash

I love this course because it’s so unique compared to all the grass crits or mud bogs that were raced thus far. Power courses make me sad because I don’t have as much power as I want. So technical and twisty seems to work better for me now and this was all that. I had some favorite sections: this included the first part of the woods and the BMX course. I had a front row NEBC call-up and took the inside lane per Mark Bowen’s recommendation. I made it off the start line fast watching Sally Annis on the outside lane and followed her into the first corner. I maintained this position for about 1 minute when the pace was totally not sustainable. I dropped into midpack somewhere and felt more comfortable. Emily was completely shredding the technical sections and came flying by me on the BMX section riding it twice as fast as I was. I only made it a few laps before I got a little bit too excited about the second bumpy BMX section. I hit the first bump in the series and got just enough air that I then smashed into the second bump and flipped the bike over. It wasn’t that fun flipping over at that speed so I didn’t get back on the bike. Once coherent I spent the rest of the day being a zombie in the warm tent, eating tasty Lester’s BBQ, day dreaming about learning how to track race, and helping with registration.

Photo by Abel Tomkinson

Tom Doucette

Cat 1-4, 55+ 3rd/9

It was a great day of racing; the weather was perfect and the event was well managed. Nice job folks. There were only nine riders in this race, two of which were on mountain bikes. Not worried about the hole-shot, I stayed calm at the start to avoid crashing and managed my way through the infield without incident. Once out of the track area, I moved into second place and tried to hold the wheel of the leader (Keith H. from 545 Velo). I’ve never been able to hang with him in the past and this day was no different as he gradually opened his lead.

On the hill in the woods, I dabbed on the first two laps but afterwards I managed to climb it. That was nice because last year I had to dismount and run on every lap.

Meanwhile, Terry C. from Cyclcrossworld was following me a few seconds back and I figured I had a race for second on my hands as he usually beats me. On the third lap, he surged by me as we approached the exit from the woods but I chased back onto his wheel on the track. We diced back and forth in the infield section and we exited the track with him in the lead. Slowly he established a gap but I kept on the gas on the chance that he would make a mistake. He didn’t and I settled on third.

 

Anthony Szczesiul

Cat 4 / 35+

After a pretty disappointing start to the season in the first few races, I began to turn things around with the MRC race in mid-October.  That was the first race where I felt like I was, well, racing.  I finally felt like I was giving a consistent effort throughout the race (instead of starting well and imploding on the 2nd lap), and I have been fairly satisfied with my races since then.  Still, I keep having one or two (sometimes even three) stupid mistakes per race, and these inevitably cost me spots in the finish.  At MRC, I bobbled the high-speed barriers on the last lap, falling and losing several spots.  At Northampton I was having what was for me a great race, before going down twice in the last three minutes of the last lap, losing 10 spots.  Overall, I really want to improve my mental preparation before races and maintain better focus during the race itself.

I was looking forward to Velo Cross, as I am somewhat familiar with the course (from training sessions), though I was a little anxious about the front row start that came with the NEBC call-up (very unfamiliar experience for someone of my abilities and record).  Quite frankly, I had no interest in going for the hole shot, as my most common racing mistake is going out too hard in lap 1 and then blowing up.  I have been better lately at controlling and sustaining my effort, and I wanted to do that here as well.  Consequently, even though I started in the front row I entered the grass infield sitting in around 10th place.  I felt it was the right decision as we left the infield and headed to the woods, since I was settling in and keeping pace with the riders ahead of me.  My first mistake came in the woods on the run-up (or ride-up).  In short, that was the dilemma that I hadn’t entirely decided prior to the race. During wam-ups I had initially decided that I would not attempt to ride the hill, but on my last warm-up lap I tried staying way to the right (Les’s suggestion) and managed to ride it.  The problem for me now was that I hadn’t entirely made up mind before the race.  On the first lap, I tried to ride it and failed (losing 3-4 spots during my awkward transition in the middle of the hill).  Did I learn my lesson for lap 2?  No.  I tried riding it again and had the same problem, again losing a few more places.  I think I sort of doomed my efforts here by not having made a definite decision prior to the race; consequently, when I went into the hill I did so without a sense of commitment.  Lesson learned: I actually need to make some decisions before the race starts.  After these mistakes on the first two laps,  I pretty much held my position for the rest of the race, working in a group with about four other riders  for most of the rest of the race (we lost one to a fall and I think the other simply  fell off the pace).  Another group behind us got close a couple of times, but three of us managed to stay away from them and open up a bigger gap on the last lap.  I noticed that one of the two riders I was left with had more trouble on the BMX course than I did so I made a move to get away from him there before heading back to the track for the finish.  This worked well.  We went into the BMX section together but by the end of it I opened a gap that I held to the finish line.  Besides those two early mistakes (or should I say the same mistake twice), I was pretty happy with my race.

Mark Lovejoy – Open Single Speed

I wasn’t sure how this race would go for me, because I had been at the velodrome since 6:30 helping Kurt with some last minute tasks.  I ate a Lester’s BBQ sandwich for lunch (yum) before my race, and it took quite a bit of time before that goodness settled down in my stomach.  I set up my bike with a 39×16 gearing thinking the slightly bigger gearing, for me, would help on the track and track infield, which were the best places to pass, and help get a good position for the “hole shot”.  Well, I wasn’t any faster than anyone else at the start, so my plan didn’t work there, but during the race, the bigger gear helped me move up some spots every lap on the track.  The race was a gas and I feel my training this year has helped, at least, in keeping my effort high throughout the race, and not dying on later laps.  Another thing about this race for me was that I didn’t feel too shattered after the race and I figure this to be the relatively few sections where I was pushing hard, and not turning or “pumping” on the BMX track.  I decided it made for a good warm-up for the next day’s race, Shedd Park.

Jocelyn Maudlin

1 of 4 – Women’s Single Speed

After another week of traveling I opted to take a break from the open field and try the more “relaxed” single speed race. What a blast! I had my reservations about the course. I typically hit trees when they line the course and make up the apex of corners. Today though, that was not the case. The start was interesting, lining up behind the guys. We plowed into the first set of barriers as a group and I got to experience a little of the bump and grind that I hear guys talk about goes on in their starts. We strung out nicely after that with the entire men’s field leading the women. I picked my way through the mud and the back sections, safely navigated the sharp drop into the gravel and hit the BMX section. Having never really ridden through on of these before I was hesitant about how to approach it. That went out the window after the first few bumps, just hit ‘em and go with it, lots of fun. The rest of the race went smoothly and I held on the take the win in front of two awesome team mates and one first time racer. Susan said she had a blast and promised she’d be back for more. Awesome compliment for a great race.

Full NEBC Results~Northeast Velo Cross

OPEN MEN SINGLE SPEED

Mike Rowell                     2 / 23

Scott Brooks                     7 / 23

Jason Devarennes          11 / 23

Noah Epstein                  13 / 23

Mark Lovejoy                  17 / 23

Randall Mauldin             21 / 23

 

MASTERS MEN 45+ C1/2/3

John Mcgrath             16 / 28

 

MASTER 55+ C3 C4

Tom Doucette             3 / 9

Barry Shopnick             8 / 9

 

WOMEN CAT 1/2/3

Emily Phillips             9 / 14

Clara Kelly                   11 / 14

Julianne Oberle            14 / 14

 

 

WOMEN CAT 4

Elizabeth Cummings            5 / 20

Janet  Lorang                         6 / 20

Lisa Marshall                         9 / 20

Jackie Zider                           10/20

 

OPEN WOMEN SINGLE SPEED

Jocelyn Mauldin             1 / 5

Cathy Rowell             2 / 5

Teri Carilli                         3 / 5

 

JUNIOR 15-18

Ari Appel                         9 / 14

Ethan Young-kershaw             14 / 14

 

MEN CAT 4

Noah Epstein             12 / 36

 

MASTERS WOMEN 35+ C3/C4

Carrie Mosher             3 / 9

Marylou Brooks             9 / 9

 

MASTER 35+ C4

Paul Jobin                         14 / 41

Anthony Szczesiul          19 / 41

Lester Bethel                    25 / 41

David Green                    36 / 41

Eric  Schraut                   40 / 41

 

MASTERS MEN 35+ C1/2/3

Mike Rowell             4 / 20

Scott Brooks             13 / 20

Keith  Reynolds             14 / 20

Eric  Wemhoff             15 / 20

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