Today we had the 3rd race of this season. Again I am too lazy to write my own report so I again took the great race summary from the newsletter of Tom Lanhove. Here Tom’s summary:
We are happy to say that we set our own record of attendance! We had 10 man “A” race, followed by an impressive 30 something “B” race. At least 5 women and even the kids’ race featured 5 promising youth, braving the wind and the bumpy course. Another fun feature was the high number of spectators giving much needed encouragement when the going got tough. A solid feature of cyclo cross is the “anything can happen” aspect. We had punctures, (harmless falls), broken gears and so forth. The race positions change often and abruptly making it fun for riders and spectators.
The winners of this race were:
• The ladies podium was: 1. Jenny (Canada); 2. Ines (GER); and 3. Hu Chen (CHN)
• The open podium was: 1. Mark Thirwall (AUS); 2. Mike Bilan (USA) and Mr. Liu (CHN)
• The advanced podium was: 1. Todd McKean (USA); 2. Hangkai (MON) and 3. Yang Wei (CHN)
The level of competition was very high this weekend. The top 4 ladies actually finished in the top 10 of the ‘B’ race. This indicates how strong these female athletes are. It also shows how cyclo cross is an “honest” sport where bike handling skills, running, overall fitness, power and endurance are key factors, leveling the playing field between men and women.
For pictures, please see the following links:
The pictures I have inserted here are all from Steve Johnston: Thank you for taking such great shots!
The B race saw a heated battle between the first 5 riders, with positions changing often. Mark Thirwall (AUS) and Yoshi-san (JPN) broke away with 3 Chinese riders + Mike Bilan (USA) chasing them down. When it seemed the gap was made, Yoshi-san smashed his rear gear shifter and he literally dropped away from the front. Mark was able to hold on to his lead with Mike Bilan putting up the best challenge, in front of a strong Chinese contingent. In a second group behind these front 5, we saw the four strongest women (Jenny, Ines, Hu Chen and Ms. Liu) battle it out. They overtook quite a few male riders, much to the delight ofthe neutral supporters. Jumping over obstacles is part and parcel of cyclo cross.
In the ‘A’ race, we had a 4 man strong race situation, with TREK’s GM Todd (USA), young Khangarid from Mongolia, Tom (Bel) and Yang Wei (CHN). Tom fell out with a puncture, skillfully repaired by Ines and Mike, leaving a heated battle between Todd, Khangarid and Yang Wei. They finished in that order at the end too.