Less than Ideal

So once again I’m late to the post…but in my defense I was not quite in the mood to type about the Austin Nats weekend. On pretty much all fronts it was a bit of a disappointment. I always try to just go with the flow and just take things how they come but deep down I was beyond disappointed with how everything went down with both my racing and the events that occurred on Sunday morning.

So I’ll keep this part real short. The SS went okay…I had a good feeling about this one and definitely knew I could have landed on one of the steps on the podium if not the top spot. Had some bad luck happen on lap one and was forced to chase. I ended up 9th. It was a pretty solid effort and gave me good confidence going into Sunday. I definitely wished I could have done better but realized I felt good and just looked at the bright side.

Now it had rained for the night prior to pre-ride on Saturday and the course was looking AMAZING!! Super slick, tons of techy sections. I am jumping for joy at this point. Sunday morning rolls around and the race is “cancelled”…What the …. You cancel a race because of the amount of rain and for the safety of some trees that you approved the course to go around… Yeah real smart Austin Parks and Rec. I won’t waste much energy on that subject because others have certainly beat that one to death. So you know what… it’s postponed for everyone, what can I do. Nothing but just stay relaxed and get ready for racing to resume on Monday.

I still feel amazing come Monday AM. Course is slick, everyone is struggling in the conditions and I am still loving it! The Specialized boys had my bikes dialed!! Huge Thanks to Patrick “Tree” and Jon for keeping those puppies in top shape all weekend. I had a great warm up and was ready for the task at hand. I roll to the start line and once call ups have been completed USA Cycling decides to fill in a 9th person on the front row, right in front of me and Troy Wells, which is definitely illegal according to the UCI. And I want to make this CLEAR. I am not blaming Jamey or Donn from Raleigh for their actions (I would expect nothing but a fight to get a rider back on to the front row) but USAC cannot over rule the UCI…Whatever it’s cool. I’ll make it work.

Gun goes off and were are racing, got a great jump off the line and was probably sitting in the top ten until complete chaos unleashed. The pack drifted to the right on a slight uphill and a rider from behind rides into my derailleur and pulls the wheel out of the dropout. There’s a huge crash behind me but I didn’t go down thankfully. Now the adrenaline is pumping and I’m fighting to get my wheel back in and the there I am the last dude still there from the crash. I keep fighting with he wheel before I realize I’m loosing even more time and decide to run to the pits. I hop on my other bike and start chasing.

At this point I’m now just on damage control and my main concern is to not get pulled. So I start chasing’ like hell. I ended up passing about 25 dudes and luckily stay on the lead lap and finish in 25 or something close to that. I didn’t really bother to look at the results and was pretty much done with the weekend and looking to put Austin in my rearview as quickly as possible.

So that pretty much sums up the entire weekend in a somewhat lengthy post. I am not a fan of long posts but this one seems appropriate and if you’ve gotten this far and didn’t just jump to the pics, THANK YOU for reading.

Thanks to Bill from Crank Brothers and Spencer from Road Bike Action for the Pics!!

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State Champs at LangeTwins

What an awesome weekend this was. It’s been a little bit since it all went down but I have some time t settle down after all of the race activities as well as through the holiday.

But looking back at the whole Districts experience, I’m so stoked we were able to pull together such an awesome day at LangeTwins. From early on in the year, I had the idea of binging Districts to LT and making it the marque event for the Sac CX series. It took some serious convincing and a frustrating days for those promoting the series but they were able to get it all together.

Joe, Bruce and I sat down numerous times to discuss the whole event layout and as well as food vendors and how the we can make this event the best it could be. Once we had the vendors lined up it was time to get down to business with Jen and Clint from Sac CX and go over all of the actual race day deets. Things came together pretty easily and things were moving. Come Race weekend, Clint, Joe and I went out onto the property and laid out the course.

Race day is here and everything looks great. No it’s time to pin on the number and get down to business. I got off to a great start and Tobin was able to join me up front and we quickly established a gap off the front. From there it would be the two of us battling the entire race through some of the thickest mud we have ever raced in. I made attacks, he made attacks we went back and forth and going into the last lap we were still together. I was able to create a gap, running a section which previously had been difficult to ride. I ran like Forest and was able stay to the finish.

I can’t even express how stoked I am to have won on “home turf” and put on a great show for everyone on LangeTwins property. This season has been incredible and things have finally fallen into place with my racing. I couldn’t be happier with how everything has gone this season and I can’t wait to see what else there is in store for me through the end of the season.

Huge Thanks to Joe Lange and the entire LangeTwins Family for their support this year! As well as all the fans who keep supporting me. Let’s keep this going!!!

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CX1 Cares

This is an awesome way to introduce a new product and we all had a good time putting this all together. Laughed so hard I was crying when were were doing the first takes.

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Art of The Can

Even more epic stuff to see in the big city. Red Bull was doing an art exhibit where they had artists make sculptures out of strictly Red Bull cans. Pretty freakin awesome! There were so many good ones!! Very impressive to see the amount of time and the meticulous work that people have put into their designs.

You wouldn’t get to see stuff like this in Sactown…unfortunately.

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Blackhawks

Tonight we got to go to the Blackhawks Game! I’d say it’s now a yearly tradition! This year I found some epic seats in the lower section, only about 10 rows up from the ice.

They were playing Tampa Bay and it was a super good game, went in to OT and then on to a shootout with the Hawks taking the win! We definitely got our money’s worth.

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Chi City

I always like to coming to Chicago. Big cities are fun and always have so much stuff going on and get to go see the crew at SRAM. I decided to take the day and walk around, kill time and enjoy the off day from riding to be a tourist. I went and got some super good lunch from this this Asian Fusion spot called Saucy Porka. Super good Bao Tacos that had BBQ short ribs in them…yeah tasty!

After that I walked from the financial district through Millennium Park and up to the River Walk, then down Michigan Ave. Nice way to kill the day.

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Derby City

Louisville is super rad! It is definitely one of my favorite spots to travel to and always has a cool vibe around the whole city. Good riding on road and off, good food, cool downtown. Yeah, pretty solid on all fronts.

This years course at Eva Bandman Park was so freaking awesome it’s not even funny…seriously though! It had turns of turns, cool jumps, epic off camber. What could be better. Saturday was a night race which I definitely am not a huge fan of. It just makes for a really long day. Plus hard to see conditions and a late night because you’re all wound up from racing for an hour at 8pm. But now I sound super negative so let’s just scratch that. The race actually went super well after getting a not so good start off of the third row and being in 30ish position through the first lap. The legs really felt good and the course was flowing for me, so I just started picking guys off. Ended up finishing 11th which it freaking awesome and might be my best UCI C1 result to date.

Day 2 was just as good but almost had a carbon copy of the start…yikes, need to work on those starts a bit I guess. Ended up rolling around all race with Adam Craig and we were having a blast just slaying the course. Riding stairs, hitting jumps, all the fun stuff you not supposed to be able to do on CX bikes. I finished up 10th and was able to score 1 UCI point and make it a successful weekend. I’m super stoked everything is falling into position and man it is fun to do well!!

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3x The Fun

This weekend was the always awesome Cincinnati Cyclocross Festival. It’s 3 days of racing on 3 different courses at 3 different venues. It’s fun and challenging and Saturday’s race is a night race to top it all off. Super fun. I started the weekend off on the right foot and finished the Race in Harbin Park off with an unbelievable 5th. The rain came down and made for some true cross conditions and a great time. So good to finally get some slick courses.

Saturday night the temperature dropped down into the high 30’s and it was time to pull out the thermal skinsuit and leg warmers. Completely different conditions with it being dry and fast. I was still able to put together a great of racing and finish off with a 13th after it coming down to a sprint with Todd Wells to the line.

Sunday was the most technical course we may have ever raced on in the US. The amount of mental focus it required was unbelievable. Tons of off-camber, crazy steep run ups and a tight and narrow chute descent that was so much fun. I was feeling pretty smoked after 2 hard days of racing thus far but once again got a good start and was able to settle into a nice group and finish out the weekend with a 10th!

All in all one of my best weekends of racing yet with scoring points all three days! So much fun. Next Stop Louisville

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Gateway to the West…or Midwest?

I flew out to St. Louis on Friday for a solid weekend of racing at the Gateway Cup. When I got in the weather was perfect and it looked like it was gonna be a beautiful weekend of racing. I was staying with some friends and he was nice enough to pick me up at the airport, little did i know it was gonna be in his bitchin’ ’64 Impala! We couldn’t fit the bike case in the trunk which was probably big enough to stuff more than a few dead bodies in…haha. So we decided just to put it in the back seat which made it even funnier. We’re just cruising down the highway with the top down and the bike hanging out the back seat!

The weekend of racing wasn’t ideal for me. I didn’t get a chance to ride on Friday and spent most of the day sitting on a plane which didn’t help. Saturday’s race I felt super sluggish and just couldn’t really feel the power in my legs. I did get the holeshot, which was cool, but the course had zero tech stuff so I quickly blew up and dropped the anchor pretty hard to finish up 20th…ugghh. Unfortunately, I could somewhat feel that that was gonna be the case as I was pre-riding.

Luckily, Sunday went much better. I was still feeling slightly sluggish but nothing like the day before. I decided to go a bit easier off of the start and was sitting top 3 though the first few turns. On lap 2, had a little bobble and lost some spots, and was forced to chase to stay in that top 10. I sat in 12th for most of the race but ended up finishing 13th after battling on a big horsepower course.
Gateway CX 3
Gateway CX 1
Gateway CX 2
photo cred:: Matteblackmedia

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