Trek USGP of Cyclocross Planet Bike Cup Day One Race Report

8:47 PM

My love of the Planet Bike Cup is total and unbending…it is just such a damn fun weekend!

Fall weather!  Cross bikes!  Cowbells!  Beer!  Barriers!  Oh yeah, and a race!

I have to be honest, though.  When I first saw the categories for the women’s fields this year I was a bit disappointed.  Last year, my first as a 3, I got to choose between a 2/3 field and a 3/4 field.  Guess which one I picked?  So this year when they only put up a 2/3 field and a 4 field on Bikereg the secret sandbagger that lives in my heart had a bit of a tantrum.  Just a momentary tantrum, because then I was all on board with getting beat by the best (or the almost-best…it’s not like I was joining the elite race).

A rare rest spot on a downhill section
We set off on the early morning chill for a 35 minute race, and it didn’t take long for me to get my cross legs back.  No matter how much you practice your remounts at speed, there is nothing like the chaos of trying to plant your butt on the seat at the top of a run-up when you are being jostled by competitors, slipping in the loose dirt, and being heckled by spectators.  Seriously, you think I’m going to jump for a Twinkie on a fishing pole?!  C’mon, I only jump for cash money, baby!  (Or maybe beer…if it is the last lap…or second to last lap…)

I don’t actually remember much from my mid-pack finish, just an image here and there.  I remember glowing with a special kind of pride when I heard one of the spectators say to his friend, “That is how you shoulder a bike – real Belgian style,” in reference to my carrying technique.  I remember thanking another racer for taking out one of the annoying poles that was always getting in my way (it was also helpful that in accidently dislodging the pole she had to slow down for a bit).  I remember thinking that there were a lot of people around the course that were cheering for me…until I understood that they were rooting for a (much faster) competitor with the same name. 

All just a bunch of randomness that added up to a great race experience – and that wasn’t even the whole day, as the elite races were still to come in the afternoon!  More about that later, as I am still in a bit of a post-weekend high (or perhaps just a bit delirious from driving straight back last night and getting up at 5 am this morning to get ready for work – must get a good night’s sleep tonight).  But here is an awesome picture of Jeremy Powers from day 2...

J-Pows and his awesome Rapha kit

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