Bike Shop Girl | A Cyclocross Race for Last Place
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A Cyclocross Race for Last Place

Cross of the North 2013

A Cyclocross Race for Last Place

When someone asks how your race went, traditionally you want to tell them your place 1st or 5th out of 10, something to that tune. When you are in last place you want to list out all the other positives of the race, this was my race this past Sunday. My first race of any discipline in Colorado, my first cyclocross race of the season, and my first race as a Category 3.

Sure, I’m looking at most of this early season’s racing as practice and learning, but it was still a pretty brutal showing on my part.

The Course at Cross of the North

I strongly believe that my carbon 29er hardtail would be been better suited for tearing up the 95% sand course that made up the Cross of the North. Up and down you went, a lot of sweeping turns that let me learn with 4 laps of racing practice, how to turn in sand (you don’t “turn”) and how to gracefully place your front wheel to force you to tumble off the bike.

I’m sure with the proper training in my legs the sand would have been easier to spin through and the necessary dismounts on two sandy hairpins would have been unnecessary, but for this race they were necessary and my legs were toast.

Cyclocross in Colorado

To be honest my biggest reason for nerves going into the race was the people, or lack there of knowing the people. Cyclocross is about the community to me. Shelling out and racing for 45 minutes is just the icing on the cake. Driving to races in the heat, cold, snow and rain is my own version of being a fan of football. Instead of being crowded around a TV or a grill at a tailgate, I’m at a cyclocross race surrounded by some of the best people I could ask for. This to me is cyclocross and I could only hope that Colorado would deliver like Maryland and North Carolina have.

Most of my teammates of Team Cycleton don’t start racing until October, so there isn’t that instant family to find when showing up in the morning but there was faces that I recognized and was greeted with warm smiles. There was the chatter before the whistle at the line and friendly talks in the parking lot with faces you don’t recognize but saw you racing and find the light in the wreckage of your failed race.

Results are in the Smiles and Miles

The race was hot, dusty and a bit shattering for me. I was happy with last place in SW3, which would have been top 10 in the SW4. I am happy that I didn’t submit a downgrade request when moving and I’m happy I showed up to race. One more step closer to making Colorado my home and to create the community I miss so badly from North Carolina.

Thank You’s

I need to thank the handful of fast dudes from Boulder Cycle Sport that were all super friendly and eased my nerves when the talked it up in the parking lot at 8am.

Thank you to Megan Hottman of The Cyclist – Lawyer as she encouraged me when passing (after flatting, getting fixed and catching me)

17 Comments
  • Nao Maeda
    Posted at 19:44h, 10 September Reply

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  • Michael Baraga
    Posted at 19:44h, 10 September Reply

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  • Stephanie Cole
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  • Mandy Hall Gallagher
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  • Melinda Reed
    Posted at 19:44h, 10 September Reply

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  • Jenn Koscelnik
    Posted at 19:56h, 10 September Reply

    Girl, I’ve raced a hand full of cross races, and love every minute of it! For me, it’s not about last place, it’s about just doing it. You see, I suck at cross – my dismount/remount leaves much to be desired, and my bike handling skills in that terrain is terrible (i’m a roadie and triathlete – I’ve never mountain biked). If I don’t throw up on my top tube or crash, I’ve had a good race! 🙂
    And living in CO, I’ll race with you any time! Doing a clinic this Thursday to help with my skills, and looking forward to a fun season!

  • Liz
    Posted at 20:01h, 10 September Reply

    Keep showing up. Keep smiling. It’ll come. Have fun.

  • Amanda Perry
    Posted at 16:03h, 10 September Reply

    Sounds like my entire cross season last year!

  • Amanda Perry
    Posted at 20:14h, 10 September Reply

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  • Total Body Personal Training
    Posted at 20:14h, 10 September Reply

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  • Tom Cooper
    Posted at 20:59h, 10 September Reply

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  • Joel Lee
    Posted at 21:59h, 10 September Reply

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  • Jon-Marc Eyer
    Posted at 21:59h, 10 September Reply

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  • womenbikeblogs
    Posted at 23:45h, 10 September Reply

    By @BikeShopGirlcom: A Cyclocross Race for Last Place: When someone asks how your race went, traditionally you… http://t.co/YdpYxM6NxO

  • bikertrails
    Posted at 00:10h, 11 September Reply

    RT @womenbikeblogs: By @BikeShopGirlcom: A Cyclocross Race for Last Place: When someone asks how your race went, traditionally you… http:…

  • p__lo
    Posted at 16:13h, 12 September Reply

    @BikeShopGirlcom the colorado cx scene can seem too serious at times. Find the @fritesenmayo team for a beer hand-up or post race beverage

  • cyclist_lawyer
    Posted at 11:58h, 10 October Reply

    Love this. A Cyclocross Race for Last Place http://t.co/cdZbcOUadm via @BikeShopGirlcom

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