Large companies make the bulk of bicycles out on the road and in racing there are few venues for handbuilt bikes. Cyclocross used to be the domain of specialty built custom bikes but the big companies got the idea that cyclocross is the growth sport and an opportunity for a new market. This is a great thing for the majority of racers as the production bikes are easier to come by and in some cases more affordable. What this does is make it difficult for a small builder to keep viable in the sport-small builders have to offer something better and with the Chinese produced light carbon CX bikes becoming the norm it is difficult to say that the custom bike made from steel, aluminum or titanium is better. I just let the racers tell me what is good and what isn't about my bikes and hope that I have a better idea and a more immediate way to respond to requests.
We have some really great talent on this team and they provide not only great results but valuable feedback for me. There are many reasons to have a team-sell bikes , help support the sport , create a group of like minded folks that can all go out and have a good time and realize goals in their life. The reason I value is that fielding a team allows me to try to build better bikes-everyone including me can benefit from that.
Now to the race report. As the results are not posted yet on the internet this will be as complete of a report as I can do based on what I saw today. The first podium of the team on the day that I was told of was Benoit Dubuisson placing 5th in the single speed B race. I did get to see the women's elite race and Caroline Dezendorf continued her great season with a second place. Campbell Steers nearly made the podium in 6th and Kelly Chang rode to 12th.
In the men's A race we had a full squad but most of the crew had to start from the back. This made for a difficult race for some-Matthew Tracy Cooke came to grief at some point early in the race and had to run a long ways to get on a borrowed bike while his race bike was repaired. Ian Stowe wound up steadly picking off riders eventually finishing 10th. Alex Work was nearly as successful riding up to the top-15. Another unfortunate was Brendan Lehman, riding strong early only to flat and have two bike changes but still he powered to finish just in front of Work. Max Judelson showed some serious speed riding from the back all the way up to 4th place and a podium spot. The one rider with the good start was Justin Abbott who rode at the front aggressively and finished 3rd.
In the single speed A race Kailin Waterman had a great race and finished 3rd against the largest and best single speed A field of the season so far.
There were other team riders at the event, David Crum , Detlef Adam, Michael Schaller and Frank Kalcic in the 45 B race as well as Tim Watson in the 45 A race and Javier Valencia in the open B race. These placings will be up soon on the Surf City CX site, along with Single speed A rider Scott Junker. I hope that's everyone ! All in all, a good showing on the day -a very competetive day at that.
With other races happening the same day the turnout for this challenging race was pretty small. Even though the numbers weren't there the competition was fierce in all classes. Our limited number of team riders made a pretty big impact on the day starting with Benoit Bubuisson getting 2nd in the single speed B race. In the mens 45 B race Michael Schaller rode to 12th and David Crum finished 18th.
The next races were the mens master A and open age groups. In the 55+ Greg Foy , hobbled by a trained hamstring still finished 4th with Rick Ortenblad making the podium in 5th. In the new 60+ category I finally had some company-I managed 2nd while Hal Stanley finished in 3rd.
In the elite races we only had two riders in the men, none in the women's race. Our two racers were Brendan Lehman who rode at the front for the first few laps and held on for a podium spot in 5th. Matthew Tracy Cooke was in the front group when he lost his chain and had a lengthy delay dislodging the chain from the cranks. In spite of losing a lot of minutes and finding himself in last he was able to get up to speed and pass enough riders to get to 10th place. Without the mechanical I am pretty sure he would have been in the top-5. The consistent riding of Brendan Lehman , Benoit Dubuisson and others on the team will most likely result in high overall placings at the end of the series-a series that the team has always show well in.