Wednesday, November 12, 2008


The Sheila Moon team sent four people to the Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships in Portland last weekend. Unfortunately, we only sent three singlespeed bikes, but we still made a successful showing.

Saturday was qualifying day. It was also really wet. We met in the intermittently pouring rain at the Chris King HQ, before setting out on a half-hour ride to the Time Trial site. The Time Trial started at an intersection of a couple fire roads, which got muddier and muddier as the day went on. The climb to the start warmed me up really well, but as I waited for the thing to kick off and for my start time, I got cold. By the time I started, I was frozen, and my performance showed it. The time trial started out as a 7 or 8 minute climb up a wet fire road. It was a pretty consistent grade the entire time, which was unfortunately just in between sitting and standing comfortably for me.

After hearing so much about last year's Tequila Shot Shortcut, I was thrilled to find someone handing out tequila at the top of the climb. I eagerly accepted the capful of liquor, only to be sent off along the main course, 15 seconds later and a half-ounce of firewater warmer. The downhill from here was advertised as really sketchy. The organizers even gave us 10 reasons why we should take it easy on this part. It was certainly slippery and twisty, but I don't think it was that dangerous. I managed to eat it on one turn, but popped back up with no real damage or time lost.

There were volunteers stationed along the side of the trail warning of sharp turns or whatever. At one point, one of them cautioned of big rocks coming up--pinch flat risk! I girded my loins, ready for a slick, nasty series of rocky drops, something like you'd get at Skyline (or on Alabama Street coming down from Bernal Heights). I was amused to find that the scary, rocky part was like 3 rocks, one of which was kind of pointed. I guess they have mud, we have rocks.

I finished kinda strong, after finally getting warmed up. I almost caught the guy who started :30 in front of me, and felt pretty wrung out at the end (not to mention pretty muddy).



and Jason


went later, and both felt pretty good about their run.

After a lunch at Rogue Brewpub (chipotle ale: yum!) and a shower, we eventually hit the party at Vanilla bikes, only to hear "last chance race starts in 5 minutes!" I quickly checked the morning's results and found I was 121st for the time trial. Since only the first 100 qualified, I realized I needed to do the last chance alleycat. I hadn't brought a bag or clip-in shoes, but I was able to borrow a pair of shoes (thanks, Tristan!) and got ready to tag along with Jason (who also hadn't qualified) for the race.

Out of towners were given a 5 minute head start, and we took the opportunity to head to the top of Mt Tabor, which was the first stop. We made it without much incident (although Jason had some trouble hauling his Big Dummy up the hill), right behind the first clump of folks. On the way down, Jason had somehow sussed out a dirt path which we bombed down, saving a good couple minutes over the paved way.

With little incident (just some getting lost and misreading the map) we got back to Vanilla in time to be the second and third out-of-towners to finish, and were assured we were in. We then did some damage to the keg, and then headed home for the night to get ready for the following day's madness.

No comments: