Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bay Area Super Prestige #1 - San Francisco

Finally got my CX season underway this weekend. I got in 2 small local races last season, but missed all the big races in the area. This time I ended up missing all the smaller races so far but got out for this one. The Bay Area Super Prestige Series is the largest series in NorCal. Today's race was so exception. The Masters 35+ A race was filled (55 rider limit) during pre-reg. They had a standby system for racers that want to get in but is determined by how many pre-reg'ed riders no-showed. 5 no-show'd and I was the 5th racer on the stand-by list. Lucked out. Otherwise I would have done the Elite race which had over 60 guys in it. The first 2 rows in the grid were call-ups based on last years series. I skipped taking one last lap of the course and got to the front of the staging area and ended up in row 3 on the inside. Start was OK, managed to avoid the first turn elbow-fest and settle into about 15th. A few big crashes in turns took a bunch of guys from the front to very back and I managed to avoid all the mayhem. The course was bone dry and super bumpy. Huge holes, dry grass, and big rocks everywhere. Super technical course with very few places to really get out and try to move up. This actually worked out great for me since I was getting through most turns better than most and the faster guys behind me couldn't really chase me down. During pre-riding I burped my rear tire bad and up'd the pressure for the race. With the super bumpy course, I was trying to find some traction and comfort with lower pressure and pushed it too far. With 5 laps to go I almost crashed in a turn and burped the front. Dropped to about 15 psi. Rode the whole lap like that and managed to not make it any worse. I pulled into the SRAM Neutral Support tent for a quick pump and got a great push off by the tech. A handful of guys went by, not sure how many were 35+ or 45+, but I think I passed all of them back in the closing laps. Felt pretty good considering I only did/attempted about 1 week of actual structured cx work.