Thursday, May 30, 2013

Week 2 in the books

The morning rain dried up in time, and 122 eager racers got to enjoy a long course at Valmont. We're still playing around with the course start - that hole shot was very important this week, with only about 50 yards to the single track. I think I only saw one crash as a result of the hard braking and crowding there though.

8-year-old Carden King started things off, showing what Boulder racing is all about. He improved over his 3rd place last week to win the kids race this week, and then jumped in the Juniors race. 11-year-old Torin Bickmore also moved up from 3rd to 1st in the Juniors race. Both of these young riders have the overall lead in their respective categories, though Bjorn Riley is just 1 point down on Torin.

After the Kids race, Sam and Beckett Cassan found where the mud was still nice and wet. Sarah from the Daily Camera included them in her article, which you can read here.

Ksenia Lepikhina has been tearing up dirt at short track for years, and now she's gotten her mother, Marina, into it. Marina took the win in the Women's B's too! Not bad for her first CU Short Track race. CU racer Garrett Brown is in good form after the collegiate road season; he won the Men's C race by a good 10 seconds over Tony Prete. The Men's B's had an intense chase for the top 5 spots. Junior racer Wyatt Svarczkopf had a slow start, but managed to move from about 6th to 2nd before the end of the race. He may have been only 1 lap away from catching Stephen Shepherd, who never let off the gas at all to earn that victory. The single speeds had a lot of shuffling around throughout the race, but Tom Hopper came out on top for the 2nd week in a row. Mark Beaudry held a really long wheelie across the entire finishing straight, rolling in for 5th.

In the Women's A's Ksenia was on Deidre York's wheel until 4 laps to go. Deidre, who's gearing up for worlds, gave us a preview of her form as she then took off, winning by a 20 second gap over Ksenia, who was another 20 seconds ahead of Tammy Sadle. In the Men's A's, Brady Kappius got another win. But he didn't get to relax on his birthday. Sam Morrison was within 5-10 seconds of Brady the entire race. Zane Godby kept things interesting holding out single dollar bills for riders to grab coming through. (John Mansell was hoping for an ice cream prime - maybe next time). Will Nabours jumped up to the A's after winning the B's last week. He managed a very solid 8th, and one of those dollars from Zane.
Dejan Smaic was out there taking photos again, and hopefully we'll have a link to those soon. In the mean time, check out the results and photos from last week.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

May 29 - Racing is ON!

Thank you sun gods! The course is drying nicely and we'll have everything set up and ready to go. See you all in a few hours.

Why does rain like Wednesdays?

Rain, rain, go away,
we want to race short track today!

Hopefully the sun will come out and dry the park, and the afternoon showers will stay away. If things are looking good, we'll race. If not, we'll let you know by 2:30pm. If that's the case, we'll move your pre-registrations to next week's race.

Stay tuned to the latest at twitter. We'll go dance for the sun gods.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

And the series is under way!

Thank you to the 109 racers who came out with enthusiasm! We had some great racing on a somewhat short course. Dawson Bauer came through flying in the Kids race to start things off. He had a large gap over 2nd place. Nolan Stephenson did the same in the juniors 10-14 race, with lap times around 3:20. He's come in 2nd in the overall in the past, and looks as though he's been training to win it this year. We had a couple of juniors 15-18 racing, but they opted to race Men's C's (and absolutely crush the rest of the field, Eric Brunner) as well as the other elite categories.

Will Nabours dominated a few early season cat 4 races to get his Cat 3 upgrade, where he consistently places in the top 10. He had a rough start in the Men's B's, but he showed how his road power converts to mountain biking. It took most of the race, but he managed to catch and pass Tim Godby, winning by a few seconds.

Diana Tanner is a newcomer to the Women's B's at Short Track, and she might be an A soon. She had a nice gap to her win over Marian Mead (2nd overall last year) and Brittany Engleking (last year's winner). The Women's A's had the smallest field on the day. Nicole Duke started things off with a blazing 2:56 lap, and then settled in at just over 3 minute laps after that. Michele Norosad had some series chain-suck at the start, requiring Kaj from Full Cycle to work his magic. Jumping in on the 2nd lap, she couldn't keep up with Nicole, but kept her within a 20 second gap the entire race. Claire Bensard and Michelle Bliss rubbed elbows fighting hard for position, with Claire beating Michele out by a few seconds at the end.

The Men's A's took no mercy on the first lap - with last year's winner Brady Kappius coming through after an INSANE 2:15 first lap. Once everyone found their positions, the pace eventually settled to 2:40 lap times.   A group of 4 riders stayed with Brady until 2 to go when he once again put the hammer down. John Mansell attempted the course on his cross bike, which slowed him down on that corkscrew descent and some very loose dirt sections, but he made up time on that long uphill. He finished proudly after a tough race, that followed about an hour or so of pre-riding. A few other riders had a lot of fun with the race, one making a different animal noise every time he came through the finish (clucking, barking, howling, I think I heard a horse neighing as well in there...), and one of our single speed riders held a very impressive wheely through the finish.

Check out the full results here, and let me know if I misspelled your name (I think I got most of them right). Donny was out taking some Photos, as was Dejan, so stay tuned for some links to their galleries.

Some notes about the race: we're sorry the generator died so early. We'll be sure to have music for all the categories next time. As for the course, it seemed everyone felt like they were almost always climbing, but then enjoyed the corkscrew descent. We're limited in how much of Valmont we can take up, but we'll try to make the course a bit longer for next time. We'll also put the finish in a wider section so that those close sprints at the end won't force one of you into the grass.

Please let us know what your opening impressions are of Short Track at Valmont. How does it compare to the Research Park? There are fewer parking spaces there, but was the parking situation still adequate? Be sure to thank the Valmont and other City employees for their efforts to getting our series put on there. Finally, we're still looking for a few more volunteers. So if you can offer a hand and would like a free race entry, email us.

See you next week!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Racing tonight!

The series begins tonight! Are you pumped? Racing at Valmont! Woo!

Check out all the details here, and read through some of the policies that we're requesting of you before tonight. Mainly, be nice, don't litter, stick to the trails, and stay off the sensitive grass. Now share the flyer with everyone you know and we'll see you in a few hours!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Series Scoring Questions

Our summer series is mostly for fun. It's a great Wednesday evening, enjoying the outdoors after work. And we're really excited to make use of Valmont Bike Park. Of course, it works well as tune-ups for major races, and counts for a good workout. Some racers of course take our series very seriously. (There are some prizes in the works for series winners...maybe that has something to do with it.) That being said, we've been debating on how to score the series.

In years past, we've had a couple different methods for scoring, with mixed reviews. This year, we'd love your input first. Here are some of the options we've had and are considering:

1. Totaling every single race. It comes down in part to pure attendance. We of course like attendance; it means more money raised for the CU Cycling Team. People get sick though, or go on vacations, and may miss a race anyway. Should missing a day be reason to loose the overall?
2. Dropping the worst 3 races. This way, you can go on that vacation without feeling too nervous about your positioning in the standings. 13 races is a long series, so maybe drop the worst 5. But then our attendance may drop.
3. Score 50 places deep, so that everyone has points on the line, and you still get fun and aggressive racing for 20th place.
4. Score just 15 deep, and everyone else gets a few points purely for attendance. That way, there is still an incentive to attend, but a top-5 racer who flats and rolls in slowly for last doesn't loose as much to the overall leader as if we were to score 50 deep.

Or some combination of the above? Or other options? As it stands now, we are thinking of dropping 4 races, scoring 15 deep, and giving points for attendance. See the last sheet on last year's results as an example. What do you think? Let us know in the comments.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Moving to Valmont Bike Park

We've been working closely with the City of Boulder Parks and Recreation and will officially be moving our Summer Series to Valmont Bike Park! We're really excited about it and hope you all are too. Over on Valmont and Airport Road, you'll get a bunch of new courses with more variety, still with the same fun atmosphere we've always had. Great mid-week family activities - mom and dad can shred some single track, and the little juniors can develop their fat-tire skills (free for them as always). We'll also be working with EXPAND to get some of those modified super-aero mountain bikes racing a few times this summer too.

Only 2 downsides to VBP:
1. The facility fee requires us to bump up prices for registration; and
2. It's a little further out than the ol' Research Park, but you should bike there anyways. Just think of it like a longer warm-up.

Check out Kris's article about it over at 303 Cycling. We should have pre-registration up at PreRace later today or tomorrow. We'll see you next week! (at VALMONT).

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Spring in Colorado...

It's May 1st. That means short track is right around the corner. What's with the foot of fresh snow? I guess head up to A-Basin and enjoy it. But I have faith it will be gone by the time our Wednesday night series kicks off...just 3 weeks away.

We're still waiting on a few last minute details to get finalized, and we're still looking for a couple more volunteers and prize sponsors. Once we have everything lined up, we'll get a flyer out, and you'll be the first to get it.

In the mean time, sit tight, tune up your suspensions, and cheer on our road team at Nationals this weekend in Utah! Woo! They're going to crush it!

We'll see you on May 22nd!