Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My first UCI racing experience!

This past weekend was the US Grand Prix New Belgium Cyclocross race in Ft. Collins. I've never done a UCI sanctioned race so there was a lot of preparation in terms of purchasing my license from USA Cycling and pre-entering for Saturday and Sunday's events.

I knew the weather wasn't looking so hot for the weekend but I wasn't expecting 37 degrees and pouring rain at all! I've never raced CX in those conditions and although I was excited, I was a little nervous too. After a solid warm up on the trainer under the Breeze Bars tent, I was able to get out for a lap before the actual race started. It was then that I knew it was going to be an absolute shit show and a test of who could stay on their bike for 45min. Since I don't have any points, I didn't receive a call up so I was one of the last people to start out of 50ish girls. The first lap was an absolute debacle of people crashing all over the place and my frustration levels were so high that I just shut it down and decided to just try and stay upright and save my legs for Sunday. I'm usually a good technical rider but between not being able to feel anything on my body and having slick tubular tires, it just wasn't my day! After a hot shower, it took me hours to clean up my bike and gear but I was finally ready to rock and roll on Sunday. Big thanks to Bryce for being a trooper in the rain and pitting for me :)

I'm still unsure how the race course was completely dry as a bone on Sunday but I'll take it! The weather was a mere perfect 57 and sunny and the crowds were out in full force. Again, I had to start in the last row but did my best to move up as quickly as possible. Bryce was out racing moto in Nebraska so I was flying solo for this race but I couldn't believe how many people I could hear cheering for me. I absolutely love the Colorado CX scene and no matter how your race is going, it's so fun to be out there.

I had a great experience and excited to have been just outside the top 20 of 47 on Day 2 with a crappy start position. Colorado is hosting another UCI event Oct 29-30 at the Valmont Bike Park so I'm excited to see if I can get some points for Nationals so I can maybe get a call up! I have to thank Annette at Mountain Moon Photography once again for getting some incredibly awesome shots!

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