Sporif Cross Cup Series USAC cyclocross

SC ‘crosses the country!

Round one of the Sportif Cross Cup Series took place this past weekend with the first stop in Cascade, Maryland. The venue at Fort Ritchie sits in the foothills of some local mountains just outside historic Gettysburg, PA. The beautiful background of pine forests, hills, and a lake confused me and left me wondering which side of the country I was on!

I am glad to be back racing after many hurdles, walls, and dead-ends with health, moving, and long working days in Baltimore/DC traffic! After only riding for 1-2 hours per week for a few months I thought I’d try a regional crit in an effort to test my fitness so that I could try and have some fun with the local cross scene this year. Long story–short, I could only do so many 800 watt accelerations “off the couch” before my legs just stopped functioning! Needless to say, I went home early. While mixing things up with running and weight lifting is great for overall fitness, it did nothing to prepare me to even sit in on the local Pro’s wheels in a crit–ouch!

I concluded that if I want to attempt cyclocross this year then I need to have a plan to be competitive. Why not just race down a category and have fun you may ask? Well, with the mid-Atlantic races falling under USAC, and after holding a Pro license for years, it was going to be a headache to downgrade. Trust me, I even thought about other names I could go by (after all no one knows me out here!) to race CAT 3/4, but someone would have caught on before long.

In the end, I just decided to ride hard for a couple weeks and see how with this race went for training. I hoped that I could at least finish the local upcoming Charm City UCI race in a couple of weeks. I arrived at the venue in style 15 minutes before the gun wnt off (not planned!) With five minutes to register, five to change, and five minutes to line up I was already racing! Anyone that knows me is definitely not believing the I got suited up in 5 minutes–I’m like a sloth before a ride. I “warmed-up” in the back of the field for a couple of laps and slowly began to pick off unknown racers one by one. Soon I realized my goal of finishing the my first CAT 1/2 race of the season!

The results were up in a flash and to my surprise I finished 6th overall in the money! I don’t know how I kept passing people, so maybe I found a good shortcut somewhere, but my trusty 13-year-old Kona just kept chugging along over every bumpy and around each dusty corner. I am happy to report that not only did I have a great time, I will be soon getting a team-issue REALL carbon cross bike (thanks, Evan!) to continue my 2013 Cross season on, so watch out weekend warriors, here I come! Thanks for reading, and see you at the races.


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