Another weekend of racing at home. I love traveling to the big races but it's also nice to spend some time with Dave and Cider and partake in the local cyclocross scene. And what a fun scene it is. Lucked out with some more nice weather - mid 50s and sunny - not bad for November. We also hit up Madison's Farmers Market on Saturday morning which is always one of my favorite things to do on the weekend.
Two races in Milwaukee this weekend with Team Polska putting on Saturday's race at Kletzsch Park. A fun course with some singletrack and a killer steep hill to run up every lap.
In an attempt to work on my starts in a setting other than a UCI race I focused on clipping in and riding hard from the gun. I was first into the course and tried to keep the pace high for the first lap as I worked to get around a couple of Masters men who started before us. Sam and Holly were with me for the first lap but dropped off as I continued to put the gas on in the second lap. photo thanks to djonnymacIt was a fun course and the superfans were out cheering in force. I always like coming upon Niles and his boombox - nothing like Guns n' Roses "Welcome to the Jungle" for motivation to ride harder. Thanks to everyone yelling my name out there - I appreciate the support!
Not wanting to get content with my lead I pushed hard throughout the course and tried to pick off as many men as I could. Always attempting to chase down the hypothetical Katie Compton in front of me! Ouch that hill hurt by the end! I felt like I was running in slow motion.
thanks to Peloton PixAfter the race Cider and I became the fans and cheered on Mark, Bob, and Dan in the Men's race. Mark took advantage of the clean course and chose the white skinsuit. He was fast as lightning and put a good gap on Brian for most of the race.
The superfans on the hill were awesome! You can see and hear their energy in this video. Matter was jumping back on his bike after the barrier at the bottom of the hill and riding. Fans were loving it.
After the race I met up with my brother and his girlfriend who recently moved to Milwaukee. We got some tasty food at Cafe Hollander on Downer Ave. Cool place that is filled with lots of cycling photos and bikes. They sponsor a team and it's always good to support those that support the cyclists.
Sunday's race was again in Milwaukee at Estabrook Park and put on by the Hampshire Cycling Club. A little more overcast and windy but still a nice day out. I got there earlier and signed up to do the Mens 3 race before the womens race. I figure it's good for me to get another hard effort in and it would let me get comfortable with the course. It was a lot of fun to try to stick with various groups of guys. It was pretty fun to be out there hearing people yell "you're getting beat by a girl" at the guys behind me. The trombone player was joined by a trumpet today and their music was adding to the scene. Lots of getting on and off the bike today with a total of 3 barrier sections and a muddy hill run up with a log.
thanks to Peloton PixI tried to not ease up at the end of the men's race even though I knew I had another 40 minute race ahead of me. Thanks to everyone cheering me on as I finished 13th. I then had 10 minutes of rest to slug down some water and a gel and headed to the start line for race #2. Wanting to get as much training advantage as I could from these races I tried to ride hard from the gun and never let up. Sam rode with me for the first lap and then I started to get a gap. I kept trying to chase down the men in front of me and ride hard the entire race. The superfans were begging me to take a beer or candy hand up on the hill but I just smiled at them instead - sorry guys!!
photo thanks to djonnymac
After chatting for awhile after the race I watched the men. Bob was the only Planet Bike rider out there but he raced really well and snagged a 5th place finish in the Elite Men's race. This is the one picture I took all day - I was very bad about taking photos today!
Check out the Team Planet Bike blog for more photos and video from the weekend - I'll add more photos as they become available.
Abby and Steve joined me for the drive back to Madison and it was fun to chat with them. They also got to witness Cider have a choking fit as she decided it was a good idea to eat the burrs that were stuck in her paws. We stopped to try to give her water and she instead ate as much grass as she could and proceeded to turn into a licking monster on the drive home. Thanks guys for helping try to calm her down! She's fine now!
It always feels good to come away with a couple of wins but I know I've got several very tough races ahead of me in the next month. I'll be traveling to Toronto this next weekend for two C1 UCI races. I'm super excited for the races and to stay with my Kenda teammate Anne who lives up there. Should be a blast!
Thanks for reading and GO VOTE!!