Tucson Camp and HPCX

2014-10-18 14.02.35These Dunkin Doughnuts on the east coast are like Starbucks in the rest of the country, one on every corner. The Turbo shots do get you going but I’m not sure which chain is better. Starbucks has better espresso, DD has better doughnuts so it’s a toss up.

I was back in Dirty Jersey this weekend for two UCI races, HPCX in Thompson Park. Thompson Park is about 35 miles southwest of Newark just off the Garden State Parkway. That doesn’t sound like a very cool location but it was a beautiful park and great venue for a CX race with super easy travel. The leaves were turning, it was a little breezy but warm on Saturday and not too cool on Sunday with plenty of sunshine, perfect for an October CX race.

The course had a lot of up and down with a good mix of pavement, climbing, off camber and plenty of slippery turns. There were also quite a few roots hidden under the leaves so it was a good challenging course. I had a great call up this weekend, I guess from the few races I did well in last year. That will all change by next week though as the first World Cup happened this weekend also and the points get reset.

The good grid position didn’t matter much on Saturday as I went from the front row to mid pack in about 20 seconds it took us to make it up the start climb and into the grass. I worked my way back up though and joined the lead group of five by the midway point of the race. I was looking forward to taking a breather but a flat tire had me headed to the pit and back in chase mode. I made it as high as second but got beat in the sprint and rolled in third.

Sunday I was determined to make use of my good grid position and managed to hit the first corner second wheel, which was a small victory just 20 seconds into the race. I rode much better on Sunday sitting on the front for a good part of the race and never drifting further then second wheel but I couldn’t shake Cam Dodge. It came to a sprint between us that I led out and he finished off. It was nice to be part of the race and not just suffering in the middle of it.

Next up for me is the Cinci 3 Day where I’ll get an idea of how my CX form is coming as long since it’s a C1 weekend I would expect most of the top guys to be there. And then from there it’s off to my favorite race of the year in Costa Rica, La Ruta! I had a few weeks off after the Boulder CX races and then got a good block of big volume training in to prepare for it. Now I’m sprinkling in the intensity with some CX races in hopes of hitting La Ruta, fit, rested and fast. Time will tell if the plan works.

P1000726On another note I’m partnering with The Cycling House this year to do a week long mountain bike camp in Tucson, AZ the week after CX Nationals. When most of the country is under snow and in a big freeze we’ll be riding in shorts and short sleeve jerseys on trails like this. It will be run by The Cycling House so it will be a top notch camp and I can’t wait to be part of it. If you want to get in on it check out the details at: http://thecyclinghouse.com/trip/mountain-bike-camp

Nothing like ending a ride with sunsets like this in the middle of the winter.

I wonder if it’s going to rain when Troy and I go motor pacing today.



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