Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Madison: Planet Bike Cup

Racing in Wisconsin is about as home town as it gets for me. And after Vegas and Michigan, the proximity to home was welcome. I was looking forward to the familiar faces as well as the new ones too. I got to meet two teammates this weekend, Sarah and Matt.

When the namesake of the race is Johnathan Page you better expect a top notch course. Jonathan designed the course to suit his Euro riding style and it was challenging yet super fun. The course was riddled with tight corners that over the course of the weekend would become more and more washed out. The second half of the lap was hidden under a grove of large trees and on a hill. Here the course became technical and swooping. Combined it all made for a super fast, super fun lap.

A sunny and hot Saturday afternoon started with Matt up against a strong 30+ masters field. He had a great race battling it out with a group of riders and crossing the line with a top ten finish in 7th. Next up was Sarah's first of two stellar performances. She started the race and finished it near the front, scoring a second place finish after separating herself from the rest of the field. I was able to score a second row call up that helped with the super fast and aggressive start. Working my way through some riders before settling in and keeping the pace high against such a fast field, I battled it out. The tight corners on the course made the hour a hard fought race. I finished on the lead lap in 19th place.

The second day brought much of the same. They did not change the course much, but the changes they did make made it even faster. The barriers moved to an uphill, so now we had to run the bike a little more. Some of the tight turns were eliminated or changed making the course more fluid. Again, Matt started and raced strong taking home another 7th place finish against the same strong field. Sarah seemed to have things even more dialed in Sunday and pulled away from all but one rider straight from the start. She raced with the leader in her sights the entire time and finished the race strong in second place again. I was having a hip problem after the beating the course gave me on Saturday, but I decided to line up anyway. After a modest start, I was riding with a pretty strong group. Even our group effort was not enough to stave off Page and Wells, who passed me with about one lap to go, leaving me to finish 22nd.

Combining this weeks results with last weeks amazing rides in the Northwest, Sarah has earned a 4th place national ranking! Way to go Sarah! Photo from here.

1 comment:

Brent said...

nice write up.
Good job to Sarah. Looks like a start to another solid year.

Matt your getting too fast.

Ben rest them bones and come back strong.