Sunday, June 29, 2008

Stony Creek Marathon XC

Erin, Joe and Jason attended the Tailwind USAC series race #4. With overnight rain and humidity this was going to be a grueling race. The men raced 6 laps and the women 5. Jason finished 4th while Joe held on for 7th and Erin battled leg cramps to hold onto 2nd place.

Jason finishing up the race in just over 4 hours.

PIC credit: the BIZ


My Dad, son and myself headed over to Rochester for the marathon race.

I had a good result at the Stony race (4th). I felt strong for most of the race even giving the first lap a long leadout to shake the race up from the gun. The conditions where sloppy at first then they turned gooey. The continous heavy rains for the past week left the 2 Tracks with standing water while the single track was nice and tacky.

The Simonster, Randy and Christian where all leadout for most the first lap by myself. Mike paced the rest of the lap, until Christian punched it thru the feed area (start/finish). I held on for a short time then dropped my pace so I could sustain the remainding 5 Laps. I passed randy as he was tightening his bars, knowing he would kill himself to catch back up. I paced along until randy came up and he was off fast and furious. As we rolled into the last little climb at the end of 2 Randy punches it up the climb and gets a small gap thru the Start/finish area. I slowly reel him in about 4 miles later. I sit on until the last 2 track section and move to the front to keep pace for awhile. As we roll into the last little climb at the end of the lap I start to accelerate to counter randys know attack spot. My pedal comes off the crank as I pull up, I stopped and messed with it, but couldn't tighten it to far without a 8mm. I ran up the hill and 1leg pedaled to where my dad was waiting to hand up a bottle. Luckly someone had a long 8mm allen key so I could re-install my pedal. Mean while i lost 3 places and about 5 minutes of time. I caught my teammate Joe and tried to pace him back thru the 4th Lap as we passed JP side lined with a mechanical. I lost Joe in the lapped traffic in the single track, as I made a effort to find out a time gap to 3rd. To far up and no one coming from behind I cruised the last lap with the hints of leg cramps shooting through the quads.

Iced Oberons made the day complete !



This was my 3rd crack at the Tailwind USAC Stony Creek Marathon. This years addition had added challenges thanks to lots of rain and humidity. It was slick and thick out there. Elite men were to complete 6 nearly 10 challenging miles of single track and open two track. Lining up with a strong field, including a handful of endurance specialists, I was ready to suffer. The start had me rollin' in the top 5 with my teammate Jason leading it out. I was feeling OK as we went through short early portions of single track and puddle filled two track. As we approached the first lengthy "Rollercoaster" portion of the course I knew the race was about to begin. It was slippery and quite treacherous at times. I was hanging in there for a while still in the top 5 but kept losing ground in corners. As the trail opened up I'd chase back. Eventually I paid the price and came off the bike as I slid off a wet tree root. Just enough time to get passed by one or two guys. I quickly got going again and tried to chase back on. Me chasing in conditions that already have me struggling isn't a pretty picture let me tell ya. A few more bobbles later and I was free to let it fly back on the two track. One of the race favorites, Greg Kuhn(FrasierBikes), was popping in and out of sight in front of me. Working to reel him in I slid out on a sharp right hander causing me to enjoy more time on the ground. I was up quickly and back at it. I fought back up to Greg in the 2nd lap only to lose him again as we closed in on lap 3. Lap 3 had me chasing Greg again and caught by a flying Jamie Parker(Specialized). Going in to lap 4 Jamie had some unfortunate mechanical problems and was forced to abandon. Coincidently my teammate Jason was also sidelined with a mechanical issue which he resolved thankfully. He caught me and immediately went by and set a solid pace. I hung in there for a while but was starting to tire and cramp. I knew things would only go downhill for the remaining 2 laps. I tried to keep up with my teammate staying in a really small gear hoping to avoid further cramping. He was still out of the saddle on climbs and looking comfortable. I survived until the Rollercoaster section and once again was dropped. I was super tense due to previous crashes and fear of the dreaded leg cramps. I went into lap 5 already a minute or two down on Jason and with another stock pile of fluids thanks to friends Michelle Simonson, Keith Reige, Zack and Mr. Lummis. Unfortunately, as hard as I tried this time around, muscle cramps would not be avoided. Both laps 5 and 6 were complete misery. I stopped, walked, stretched, drank, ate and massaged. Nothing worked. Going into lap 6 I stopped for a few minutes to refuel. My hamstrings totally locked up and you could see my muscles contracting. Creepy. After some deep breaths and something to drink I pressed on. I was determined to finish. Little did I know I was in 5th place! I pedaled on in the best gear possible up the first little climb. That's when my buddy Robert Herriman(American Cycle&Fit/Wolverines) rolled by smooth as can be and said "just pedal on lightly". And that I did. Except now I was in 6th place. Bah! I continued on with lots of stops and walks along the way. Chatting with some friendly folks and fellow sufferers I was happy to know it would be over soon. As I was closing in on the final couple miles I was passed by Cycle Therapy's Mark Parmelee. I just stood hillside and watched him ride off in the sunset putting me in 7th. That's how my race would wrap up. Lots of cheers, beers and friends at the finish. Yup, it was totally worth it. Congrats to all who finished this difficult event.



Upon arriving at Stony Creek I found that in addition to the competition that shows up on a regular basis, the ladies field would also consist of a couple of local CX gals, one of which was Ann Schwartz (Flying Rhino’s) & also an endurance specialist Danielle Musto (Kenda/Titus). AWESOME! The 11 of us lined up & chatted for a few waiting for the Elite & Expert mens waves to take off. Some where during those few minutes I must’ve given my body the ok to abandon my “Steady Eddie” strategy and adopt a new one: Ride as hard as I can for as long as I can,cramp up, & fizzle out in the end. When race promoter Robert Linden said “Go!” I WENT! Ha! I took the hole shot & lead us out into the trail. After a few miles I looked back to see who was hang’n on: Kerry Collins (Team Giant MI) & Danielle were glued to my wheel. I excitedly exclaimed “Nice little group we have here! Aye?!” HA! I was feeling good & having other faces in the mix just added to the fun! Along we went hammering on our merry way down the two-track (about half the course was fairly flat two-track). Eventually the three of us slipped into the sloppy, winding single track section called ‘the Pines’. I believe it was here Danielle lost contact with Kerry & I. I kept it on the gas & honestly I’m not sure where I dropped Kerry?! I assume it was in the Pines because I highly doubt it would’ve happened on the two track. Anyway, all alone now with 10 people chasing me, heart rate pegged & still feeling strong, I started reeling in the Expert men. It went on like this until I came through the lap chute for a bottle feed ( :o) Thanks Mitch-a-palooza Simonson!) heading out on lap 3. Uh oh! I had 30 more miles to go...Yikes! I felt good though & had a few minutes lead, but still decided to back it down some. On lap 3, still alone, I passed some more expert men & at one point crashed. While lifting up & over a thin,wet sapling lying across the trail, it’s bark scrubbed clean off making it slick as ice, my front wheel didn’t make it over & instead rode it down length wise. Shaken but not broken, I jumped up got going. I must’ve been overdue for a mishap! All along I made sure to drink all fluids on board, slurp down my Clif Shots, & take in extra electrolyte. Going out onto lap four while reaching in my pocket to grab the electrolyte pills I pulled out my hand & lost them all on the ground. No matter I thought... I’m fine! I guess I was due for a second mishap (getting them out of the way before Nat’s hopefully...LOL). CRAMPS! About three miles before the finish of lap four (almost 40 miles in) I felt the onset of muscle cramps. In a matter of minutes I had cramped so bad my hamstrings, calves, & quads had completely seized up. As I was coasting, spinning, (punching my quads) & stretching trying to recover I heard a rider surging up behind me. It was Kerry. Dang it! & the timing of it all! Now on my wheel & approaching the chute to our final lap there was no covering up just how bad I felt. Actually it was so obvious I was hurting someone even asked “Erin, you alright?” . And silly me, I murmured “No.” And with that Kerry quickly propelled herself past me & out of sight. Starting lap 5 I wondered if I would even finish. Pretty crazy how fast things can change. I forged on spinning the pedals around with as little effort & pressure as it took to keep moving forward. I walked up a couple hills & even stopped to stretch. As all this was going on I had not forgotten that somewhere behind lurked (most likely) Danielle. Every once in a while I’d look back expecting to see a glimpse of her red jersey. About half way through the last (5th) lap I did! In the ‘Roller Coaster’ section of single track I saw her gaining on me fast. I knew it was now or never. I gave it everything I had RIGHT THEN hoping my legs wouldn’t fail me in the effort to escape a looming 3rd place. I felt like a wounded animal being hunted through the woods...trying to scurrying out of sight so she might give up. On the two track I latched onto the wheel of the 2nd place Elite man, Greg Kuhn(who happened to be lapping me at the time), and held on for a minute to gain momentum. I was fading fast & the finish line wasn’t coming soon enough. For the fifth & final time I dumped out of the single track, crossed a field, went back into a very small stretch of single track which wrapped us back towards the finish line.It was in that last tiny bit of single track that the 3rd Place Elite man passed me, Randy Laprarie, & told me Danielle was RIGHT behind me. OMG! I had nothing left! Heading towards the finish line people yelled “Sprint Erin! She’s right behind you!” . I could do nothing but softly spin across that bumpy grass. I kept looking back and she was gaining on me like I was standing still... because I basically was. BUT I made it! I made it across the finish line before she caught me! In 2nd Place! Not as good as first 1st,6 seconds better than a 3rd, & WAAAAAY better than a DNF! Up Next: East Coast Road Trip-NMBS#5 @ Windham Mt & Nat’s @ Mt Snow



TK lawless, TT, Elite 3rd.

Started the day with a nice 60 minute road ride to warm-up. I was able to get a later (5th.) start time which helps in TT's like lawless. I started great thru the low muddy section in the first mile or so and then into the second mile were I caught my 30 second rider....keeping the pace up high for the next several miles I was able to catch the next rider 1 minute 30 second rider about about mile seven, as I passed Jason he mentioned that there was still one rider up the trail. Onward I pressed with hopes of catching and potentially securing a win? Over the next two miles I thought I caught a glimpse of this rider but just as I was blasting down thru a few rougher stone sections I caught my rear tire and could sense that I was going flat...yep...about 1/4 mile later I was off the bike trying to throw some air in the luck..damm...time to start running and then the thought crossed my mind that maybe Robert would let me re-start. So I made it into the start finish and he agreed that the race was not a usac sanctioned race and that he would let me go again....Tube in rear tire...back to the start line as the sweeper I was off again...feeling great thru the first 8 miles passing carefully over the section were I flatted in my first attempt...up and into the whoop te dos.....I could hear thunder and heavy winds...damm....this is going to suck but I thought no I am lucky to have gotten a second chance and not a I rolled thru the last 2 - 3 miles things got very slick and slow...I put it into safe mode on the steep grassy off camber turns and was happy to finish the day in 3rd. ELITE.....Thank your Robert for the second roll around T.K. I had hoped to repeat a win which I took ten years earlier in 1998 on the same course. I finished up and spun down to Bristol, Ind. another 1 1/2 hours. The afternoon was spent working on the cottage (Birch lake) that I am selling and moving stuff up to the Cabin / cottage that sits on the North shore bluff...Much cheaper to afford and Lot's of cool factor
since it was built by the WPA in the 1930's.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008


The Start of the Lumberjack 100, Jason Lummis off to the right with an early jump :>)

The mud section after the water sections.

John Meyers hoofing in the top 3 on the first climb at the start....

John in the top 3 back on the bike.

Jason hoofing it in the top 10 with fuzzy and Christian Tanguy

Long day in the saddle 8hrs 16 minutes for Jason 13th overall.

Jason and John raced the lumerjack 100 this past saturday, start time 7am. The weather was perfect and the racing friends where ready for a long day in the saddle. Jason jumped to the back of the leadout vehicle for a 30mph warm for the 2 mile road leadout section before the trail. Everyone joined him a mile later as they entered the BIG M parking lot. John Meyers moved with the leaders as the hit the first hill. AND the rest was a long day.
Race reports soon, results link below.

John Meyers:
LJ100 report:
Break#1 and Break#2

This first break took place as Jason peeled away with the van and the balance chased, as we approached the turn in to the parking lot the trek SIMONSTER decides to spool it up a bit, I remained in his slip stream as we rolled off the payment and up to the first climb, his teammate and eventual winner jump-up as we hit the low loose steep section, I was feeling great and climbing is FAV of mine so all is good, somewhere in the next ten feet Harlen shoots across in front of me and bobbles, damm, time to jump and run...back on and over the top in 3rd..yeah....basically the first lap consisted of the 7 - 8 rider break, we hit the swamp with no clue and all rode until the very last section and than ran helter skelter looking for the trail, the Simonster lead the way(pre-rode the day before) and we all made it thru the first lap...I move up and was sitting in 6th. damm! feeling great!

Second lap was good kept a nice temp with the concern to keep my heart rate down in the 160's so that I could maintain what I was consuming and no blow-up for the following two laps, at about 8 miles to go in the lap I roll up on the Simonster...strange...I am not having a peak day just a good day but what's up with Mike? hey the 14,000 feet will wear you down, so no problem, I am 100% rolling with Mike, stay positive, keep Mike positive, great, all is good, so at about 2 miles to go in the lap we roll up to the final climb in the lap and I shift down and go for granny....mistake jambed the bike try and free it go...shift back to middle ring looks like things are o.k. jump on pedal
BREAK#@2...DAMM! is over no I decide the start finish is close enough to run in and make a repair or grab a new chain, I make into the start finish with may riders going by, chain fixed back on the course, lap 3 was all about raging back and trying to catch the riders that went by, in the lap 3 I grabbed up Greg Kuhn and Garth Prosser(former sobe cannondale teammate) and told them we must push on, half way into the lap I roll up on Jason, I tell him get on board let's all roll this together, Jason was at a low point looking for a CocaCola for a boost, Jason pulled it back together and finished in fine form, we kept her going for the fourth lap, Garth did 90% of the the tempo work, we stopped for some delicious CocaCola at the outer loop aid station...a little caffeine to get thru the final 13 miles, Garth did a great job, great tempo and in we came to the finish in 9th and 10th geared!!! We finished the afternoon with some fine catered food at the start finish and off to the awards for a little celebrating.....A big, big, big, big THANK YOU goes out to the man Scott Quiring for great accommodations at Camp David on Hamlin lake and the spot on crewing in the transitions!!!! Additionally to Lummis for the driving up to the race and drive to camp David....damm how did we make with all the road closers and deep wash outs? Also to the great sponsors for providing the best equipment and beer to do what we love best....Race our Bikes!!!


Notes: Lot's of water over the road and trail, passing over a a dead skunk discharging at 60 down please Jason, #139 = a free hot shower, icey cold bells beer, custom lite ti-carbon Quiring 29ers are a NUE 100 miler secret!
and free Hot showers!
At long last my Lumberjack race----- Going into this race I was thinking I really was going to make an effort to stay focused the whole way. There is usually a 30 mile section of a hundred race that I lose concentration and let the fatigue and pain take over. I might just want to lay down for good or just go home during this time. I usually come around and start to have fun, by the end I just want a cool Bells Brew and some good food.
This year I jumped to the back of the leadout van for a nice little 25-30mph wind up/ warm up for the start of the 2 mile paved road roll out. It was fun to look back as Shualck, Simonster, Eatough and 30 other fast guys sprinting to catch me. This set me up for a nice roll in to the parking lot in the top 10 feeling relaxed. We hit the first climb as I dismounted with everyone except the top 2. I moved up thru the pack and just missed the lead group at the top. I eventually passed a few guys and was 30 secs back from the lead group that was being pushed by The Simonster. Dropped my water bottle, stopped and retrieved it, as jumped back on the seat it slips forward and down. With 4 miles left to where Q is waiting for me with a feed bottle I decide to ride to him and work on my post with an extra hand. Has i got going again the second group caught me for the beginning of the outer loop, which is flat and with a slight down grade. I pushed through and around the second group to no mans land again, 2-3 minutes down from the riders ahead. I kept this pace for the next 40 miles. Then Garth caught me and dropped me. I caught him at the beginning of the 3rd lap outer loop and dropped him. Then it hit me --I had been drinking and eating well, I just believe the mental fatigue set in and I lost all motivation to push hard. Then my teammate towing 2 guys catches me and rides easily away as I want to just lie down. I pushed on into the final lap, as I hear The Farmer yell out from behind on the inner loop I feel like I need to push the pace and get him from pacing off me. Nate catches me just before the Aid station and I say "see you soon", as I stop for a few last lap Cokes. I catch Nate in swap and run up to him. We then ride for awhile together thru the flat sections, but Nate drops off with leg cramps on the hills. As we hit 15 or so to go I feel some sugar rushes from the Coke and up the pace into a gradual climb that rolls into a grinder of a climb. I get a small gap on nate as I weave between a few lapped racers and as we hit the long grinder I jump to drop Nate. Probably 10' later while in the Big ring out of the saddle my left pedal strikes a stump throwing me to the ground. I just remember coming to on the ground with 2 guys standing over, I guess I came to standing throwing punches from what Nate said. Nate also said I was laid out for 10 secs. My rear wheel was blown out of the drops and all I wanted to do was finish. Nate wanted me to hangout for awhile, but the race was still on and I didn't have anything broken. I thought there was just a mile left as I tore off, but actually 10 where still ahead. The Farmer rolled up laughing asking if I was OK ! I was except for a stiffening neck and sore ribs. Nate was a real good person with his concern, but he had a huge 40/26 ss gear and the trail kept going up. I spun my way to a nice gap over Nate and even scored some Chiropractic work after the race to stretch things out nicely to heal. 13th overall and about 16 minutes slower than I planned. Oberons, Two hearted and Big Porch tasted great after the after race shower booting.
The ribs are still sore, so I put the White Bros fork on for Stoner Creek Marathon.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Brighton State rec Area Stage race

The start of the mens Elite XC

Joe, Erin and John attended the Brighton Stage race, while Jason Lummis could only attend the sundays XC portion of the race weekend.
John Meyers competed in the Expert 40-44 class to help qualify for the USAC MTB Nationals and won the weekends stage race.
Erin Vicary easily won the womens Open class.
Joberon finished 5th for the weekends stage race in the Mens Open class
Jason finished 3rd in sundays XC Elite race (work kept him from the stage race format).


Ugh!! That was a tough weekend. I'm always pushing for more people and competition to show up at the MTB races. Well, it seems I'm getting my wish. In addition, the quality of the field just keeps improving. To crack a top 5 is no small task. The Tailwind USAC Brighton Stage Race consisted of a Time Trial and grueling Short Track on Saturday. Sunday the weekend is topped off with a Cross Country race. Besides mass quantities of suffering it's really a swell weekend and venue. I was very pleased with how things went for me on Saturday. I managed 4th in the Time Trial on a trail that doesn't really suit me. Very tight and twisty. First place, Christian Tanguy(American Cycle & Fit), had a sizeable gap on the field but many of us were left in a close battle leading up to the afternoon Short Track event. The few hours between races went by quickly. After a bit of rest and some great food prepared by Erin's parents we found ourselves lining up once again for more pain. The Short Track took place within the large grassy picnic area of the park. The entire 20 minutes of racing was on power zapping energy sucking grass. The event was a drag race. I was able to hold on to the leaders for about a lap and a half(of 8). Eventually I popped and was dangling out it the wind. Bill Clikeman(American Cycle & Fit) reeled me in and immediately passed. I did everything I could to stay on his wheel. I was hoping I could recover and go around but he hammered out the remaining laps dragging me to the finish in 5th. Not bad. I ended up losing a small bit of time on a few but putting time into others. In the end, it was still a close battle for the overall spots. SUNDAY! SUNDAY! SUNDAY! Bring on the heat! High temps and some close competitive racing were on the menu. After some pretty good legs on Saturday I was feeling confident going into the XC. My on form teammate Jason Lummis was in attendance with some peppy legs to lend a hand for the overall. He says he started "slow" but I think it's the fastest I've ever seen him go! I think he was showing off for his Dad and cute as a button son Zack. Jason lead us into the first greasy wet lap. On his wheel was a hard charging Dylan Lanspeary( then me. I was stoked with my position and felt fairly comfortable. I was braking a lot going into the sloppy corners which started to create gaps. I'd chase back on only to fall back off the lead two in the next slick right hander. Half a lap later Christian flew by me and I found myself in no mans land again. As I started the second 8mile lap(of 5) a strong group of chasers caught me. After one lap in the heat we all looked as if we'd been racing for hours. Team Specialized rider Michael Wissink was in our group and started crunching numbers. He said, "we have 4 more laps. We're going to be out here for 3hrs." He was right! I had done one lap, felt like I was going backwards and was just informed I/we have another 2.5hrs of racing left. Ugh! over the next lap or two Randy Laprairie(Macomb Bike) would attack. Then Jamie Parker(Specialized). I had nothing. The moves were made and I couldn't react. I could only watch as they rode away. Leaving me alone with Jamie's teammate Michael. Who, by the way, was ahead of me in the overall. I went through many moments of suffering and frustration. Late in the 3rd lap I started to regain my composure. I accepted the fact that there would be not attacking and I had, what felt like, no power. I just found the most comfy gear possible and worked on trying to get the sufferfest over with ASAP. Thankfully my parents and friend Ginny were there for feeds. Keeping fed and hydrated were so important this day. Somehow I started to put a little space between myself and Michael going into the 4th lap. I felt like I was riding like a slug. In the end everyone was due to the heat. I started lapping Expert riders and could see they were suffering. I was passing riders quickly and realized I wasn't going too poorly. One more cold drink feed from Mom and I was finally off on my last lap. Avoiding incident I was able to finish fairly strong and even put a little time into Michael to take 6th in the XC and 5th overall in the stage race. A great weekend of racing for the Bell's Brewery/Quiring Cycles Team. We all made the podium and even had two wins. Congrats to everyone how raced. It was a heated slugfest out there. Thanks again to our parents who really helped us out this weekend. See you at the next one. In the meantime, I'll be busy recovering.
Erin Vicary:

Living only an hour from the Brighton Rec Stage Race venue, along with having a 12:00 start, afforded Joe & I the luxury of sleeping in & cooking up a great breakfast at home. Combine that with our (parents & friends) cheering section, some kick’n coffee & a good warm up - we were set up to succeed. To kick off the weekend on Saturday we had the TT on the Torn Shirt Trail. Torn Shirt is a very twisted, overgrown, narrow, 6 mile single track loop with some steep, rooty, digger climbs. Almost never did it allow for sitting still on the saddle. I was constantly moving, shifting, & leaning to get around corners or up & over obstacles. Quite fun! At the TT start each racer was sent into the woods in 30 second increments. I happened to be starting 30 seconds after Kerry Collins (Team Giant Michigan), my main competition that showed for the stage race. It took about a mile and a half before I closed the gap between us. Then continuing on I grew a 1min40 lead through to the finish. I suspected I might need a time cushion because next up on the day was an entirely grass, 95% flat Short Track course more suited to my closest competitors strengths. Whether my foresight was based in psychic ability or just plain old realism, i don’t know, but my prediction for ST (unfortunately) came true. After trading pulls the first two laps, Kerry made an attack & bridged up to some expert men on the course with us. I tried to answer & found I did not have the legs to follow. I started to shut down a bit due to the hard start, direct sun, 95 degree temps, & very high humidity. I soon realized survival mode had kicked in & my parents, who came out to watch, were going to see their daughter unravel into a pile of goo. I swear I could have fried an egg on my head when I finally crossed the finish line in 2nd about 1min10 back from 1st. Do the math...& I still had a 30 second lead overall to start Sunday’s cross country race. It stormed very hard Saturday night leaving the 8 mile Murray Lake XC trail loop pretty greasy & wet for the XC race. That morning I decided strategy, with my 30 second lead & my bodies horrible reaction to the previous days ST race, I was just going to play defense on the first of the four laps to see how I felt. Kerry took the hole shot (be my guest) & lead the string of us ladies out & into the single track. After a mile the noises behind me faded & I knew it was just her and I alone at the front. Kerry’s game plan became apparent at the first sign of an open straight away: Out of the saddle, hammer, & try to drop me. I answered her attack as soon as it happened & she didn’t gain an inch. We continued along on the winding trail finding it damp & very slick in the corners. Now, not nearly as flowy as it had been in my pre ride. The air in the woods was not moving at all. The humidity & temperature seemed to rise with every pedal stroke, but at least the trees provided some shade. Then ahead I saw another straight away, gradual climb... get ready I told myself. She attacked again & I followed without hesitation. I knew for certain then that I was racing with my good set of legs :o) &  got very excited! Still I knew it would be a long one so I stayed patient. One more attack answered from Kerry, same exact scenario as the first two. Then with a few miles remaining in the first lap she dropped her chain, I went around, & never saw her again. When I popped out of the woods, heading for the lap chute, I heard Joe’s parents cheering & saw our friend Ginny holding an ice cold bottle for me! 1 lap down, 3 to go! The 2nd lap I concentrated on catching the expert men that started in the waves ahead. I managed to catch around 10 or so which kept it interesting. The third & fourth lap weren’t as arduous as I thought they might be because I kept the fluids coming & the trail was drying out fast making for a really fun ride! I kept an honest, steady pace through to the finish line & felt GREAT about my ride, finishing almost 5 min ahead of 2nd place! Thanks to Joe’s parents, my parents (& their friends Donna & Michael), Ginny, & everyone else that cheered us on all weekend! It really helped! Congrats to my awesome teammates on their great results! I’m very proud of you guys :o)! Next up- Stony Creek Marathon!


Monday, June 02, 2008

Hanson Hills Rec Area XC race.

John, Joeberon and Jason attended Fun promotions XC race at Hanson Hills in Grayling MI. Jason placed 3rd, Joe 6th and John 7th in the Elite Open class.


Hanson wasn't on my list of races but I was in search of some fun and a test track for the new aluminum Quiring 29er. With the help of Keith and Paint Creek Bicycles the new ride was finally finished up Friday night. Don Cameron and Michael Wissink of Specialized were making the drive up to the race Sunday and were nice enough to let me join them. Car pooling is the way to fly nowadays. I was feeling a bit tired but was able to get my heart rate up quite high during the warm up. Pretty good sign for me. The bike felt great but I needed a little more trail time to dial her in. Three 10+ mile laps on a sweet course should do the trick. The Elite field wasn't huge, around a dozen, but it was stacked. Mike Anderson (RBS) and Randy Laprairie (Macomb Cycle) are back in town after lots of hard core training and racing success with the Lees-McRae College powerhouses. In addition we had CX superstar "The Wiss" joining us and a host of other strong guys. My teammate John took the hole shot. Rippin' along behind him was our teammate Jason. Then Anderson, Lapraire and me. Shortly before the first climb Lapraire jammed it and went around John. Anderson followed his move. It was john, Lummis and me just behind breathing hard. We weren't far behind the two leaders when we hit the top. A gap had formed behind us and John buried it keeping Randy and Mike in sight. They were going full on trying to drop us. Eventually Jason went to the front keeping the pace high and keeping the leaders in our sights. The gap was growing a bit but slowly. Jason was riding strong. I thought I'd go around eventually to assist but he kept the pressure on trying to catch those guys. I was starting to feel it late in the first lap, clipped a pedal and bobbled. This created a small gap between Jason and I. I lost sight of him going into a new section of downhill towards the end. Unfortunately I was only looking for Jason rather than a trail/race marker and blew past a (marked)turn. Took me over half a minute before I realized I screwed up. I turned around and got back on track. During this time Wissink (Specialized) and Ron Sanborn (Mclaine Cycle) had gone by and were long gone. Due to the efforts on lap 1 I didn't have it in me to chase at that time. I settled into the last long climb trying to recover a bit. Starting lap 2 I noticed John wasn't far behind. Thankfully!! I was feeling pretty bummed about my mistake and unmotivated. John helped me get my s**t together forcing me to work and hold onto his wheel. Closing in on the 3rd and final lap I started feeling like a bike racer again and began the chase. Eventually I could see I was closing in on Wissink and Sanborn. It was too late however as they were battling hard for the 4th spot. I actually got to see Michael's attack atop the final climb. Pretty cool! In the end I rolled in for 6th 30 or 40 seconds behind them. A pretty sloppy race for me but a fun time on a great course. The bike is awesome! You have to see this thang. Feel free to take it for a test spin too. I'll be out at the Tailwind USAC event this weekend at Brighton. Stop on by. Rumor has it the Sea Otter Semi-Pro Men's Short Track Champion will be in attendance. As well as Team Specialized, Wolverines, American Cycle and Fitness. Any others? Will Team Giant be testing their early season CX form?? This is a great venue and great weekend. Both a TT and ST on Saturday and a super fast XC course on Sunday. Come on out and get crazy!

Jason Lummis:
Hanson hills XC race was on my schedule of to do races. It has some similar feel to the Lumberjack and is a really fun course. I have been getting about 12- 15 hours a week of riding (10 of those are my daily commute to work and home) and throw in a Thursday Night Potto World Championships every week and that is about all I can fit in with work/family obligations. So I have been very happy with my results so far this year.
I meet Dan K at a park and ride on US23 at 6am sunday for the drive up to Grayling (2:45 minutes later with gas fill up). I felt fine as we pre rode 70% of the course, as that was all the time I had for a warm up. My team mates John and Joe where ready to race hard from the gun as John grabed the lead from the word ready ( :>) ). The young guns Mike Anderson and Randy L. jumped to the front over John just before the first climb and got a quick gap. John didn't have it that day and tried to keep us close as the leaders pulled a way slowly. I felt the need to try and close the gap myself and went around John with Joe to close the gap. A little late and no extra jump I couldn't quite make up anymore ground on the 2 ahead. I heard Joe bobble on a climb and he was just falling off my pace as we where coming towards the end of the 1st of 3 laps. I almost missed a turn at the end that I had not pre rode, but was able to find the turn, unfortunately Joe didn't see the turn and lost some time at that point. As I crested the first climb of the course on Lap 2 I could see Ron and The Wiz about 30-40 secs back, I pushed hard thru the 2nd lap and didn't see them again. The 3rd lap was a total shut down where I just hammered the climbs and cruised the trail keeping smooth and flowing. I finished 3rd a couple minutes down from 1st and 2nd and a minute up on 4th and 5th, with an easy 3rd lap I was happy with my efforts and results. Next race Lumberjack ! Maybe Sunday's Brighton XC, I have to work saturday and can't do the whole stage race.
Great race to Mike and Randy glad to see they are improving from last year, looks as if college life in Banner Elk is making them into some strong racers/riders. I hope the keep following thru with their goals.
--- Lummis