Saturday, October 21, 2006

Sac CX #5: Rancho Seco

Okay, after the two week break (My dog was sick last week and the Bay Area Super Prestige was two weeks ago), I got my lazy ass out of bed and drove south to Herald, CA for Sacramento Cyclocross #5 at Rancho Seco Park. And for once, I actually arrived on time and got to do some pre-riding of the course.

Beer league was up first on the schedule and the weather was perfect. The course was very different from the other races: very short, very grassy (more on that later) and very technical (16 turns?). The laps measured just 0.65 miles with almost no climbing (30'/lap). It was basically 85% grass, a little pavement (10%) and one stretch of sand (which was actually pretty easy). We had two (or maybe three) barriers, a little higher than normal, along with a step up out of the sand. What was really difficult was the sharp turns on the wet grass. The course started out is good condition, but started to get muddy after the first lap. I didn't see the Men's "A" race but I imagine that the course might have gotten sketchy.

I had a pretty mediocre race. After the initial jumble of riders (which lasted several turns due to the many sharp corners), I ended up in the middle of the trailing pack. I made pretty steady progress throughout the race and by the end of the 7th lap, I was within striking distance of the lead guy in our trailing pack. Unfortunately, I almost missed a turn and lost a few seconds which let him get clean away. I finished on the lead lap (9 laps total) but somewhere around 12th place (out of probably 20ish). Considering the course didn't really cater to my skills (in fact, the technical nature, flatness and short length really hurt me), I think my race went well.

I ran my usual setup (CX bike with Ritchey Speedmax at 60ish PSI). I could definately have used better mud tires -- people on mountain bikes really had a good advantage on this course.

Post race beer: Farmhouse Hayloft Pils. Got it on sale at BevMo. Not a bad beer, a little light for my tastes. Brewed in Gilroy, CA. 3/5 Stars.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a great blog with nice pictures. Keep them coming. I was there today too. I would run lower tire psi for better traction (40-45 depending on your body weight). Also I think Michelin mud tires are good on grass.