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2010 Cycle-Smart International Cyclocross November 8, 2010

Posted by SL in Race Reports.
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Our team had a small but impactful showing at the 20th edition of the Cycle-Smart International Cyclocross in Northampton, MA. The results for Day 1 and Day 2 are not published, but a link will be added when they are available. Matt Domnarski (45+), Paul Nyberg (45+), and Wade Summers (35+) raced both days. Scott Livingston (me) raced the 35+ on Sunday only.

I have a longer post on my blog. It was a nice weekend of cyclocross racing in New England and we our riders had a strong showing in competitive fields. The Verge Series races bring out the best riders from all over the Northeast and not just New England. It was great to stick around after our races and watch the elite riders duke it out on a challenging course layout. The Horst Engineering-Benidorm Bikes-Property Research Corp. Cycling Team has a lot of cross on the agenda between now and Christmas.

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Ironman World Championship October 11, 2010

Posted by SL in Race Reports.
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It was a tremendous privilege to represent Team Horst Sports and the Horst-Benidorm-Property Research Corp. at the Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. Last Saturday’s race was one of those special experiences in life. Just participating is a dream come true for many triathletes. The full statistics are coming together a couple of days after the race, but nearly 1800 athletes started the swim. Physically, I had a good day, but not a great day, which is just fine with me. It was a rookie experience and I suffered from the heat and wind. I think I was equally as relieved at the start as I was at the finish. Five minutes before the race, I was treading water in the bay with 1800 new friends, and I realized that all of the preparation, training, logistics, and travel had worked out. I let out a huge sigh of relief. Just getting here healthy and ready to go, with all of the right gear, and with all of the other details sorted out, was a huge accomplishment.

I was happy to finally have the race course ahead of me and all day to have the experience of a lifetime. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t settling for any old result. I had a time in mind, but more importantly, I wanted to have an incredible experience in a special place at a special venue. 10:27:31 later, I crossed the finish line on Ali’i Drive to the cheers of thousands of people, including Debbie, my kids, my parents Stan and Lynn, aunts Mariette and Terry, and cousin Amy. I didn’t reach my time goal, but I was pleased with my effort on a very hard day. I finished fourth amongst the Ironman XC group that I was part of, and third in my XC age division. I was in the top half of overall competitors which included the best triathletes in the world. Most importantly, I am an Ironman Hawaii finisher.

It was an awesome race. My full report can be viewed at this link.

2010 Vermont 50 Mile Ride & Run September 28, 2010

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The Horst-Benidorm-Property Research Corp. Masters Cycling Team and Team Horst Sports had a great day at the Vermont 50 Mile Ride & Run.

I’ve got a full race report and photos on my blog.

Arlen Zane Wenzel, Michael Wonderly, Matt Domnarski, Art Roti, Mark Hixson and Randall Dutton all had fine rides.

2010 Keith Berger Memorial Criterium June 27, 2010

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Gary Aspnes, Wade Summers, and the rest of the team will have to post their versions of the race report. Gary’s fine victory in the 40+ race at  today’s Keith Berger Memorial Criterium was a work of art. Teamwork played a huge role in the victory. It was an eight man strong team. Joining Gary and Wade were: Ian Sinclair, Arlen Zane Wenzel, Matt Domnarski, Wayne Prescott, Ted Donofrio, and Thom Reid. I’ve got a more detailed report and some good photos on my blog.

Brasil vs. Vermont June 4, 2010

Posted by SL in Race Reports.
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Last year, when I first heard that a modified version of the Killington Stage Race was going to be held on Memorial Day Weekend 2010, I was stoked. The KSR was one of my favorite races of all time. I loved the original five-day format and raced the event many times during my pure road cycling days. The Rutland Criterium is in my top five all time crits. My other top crits include West Point, Williams, Altoona, and Gloversville. Additionally, Vermont is my favorite state, so it seemed destined that I would do KSR.

Of course, fate intervened, and I had the opportunity to go to Ironman Brasil as part of the Ironman XC program. I missed the KSR this past weekend, but had the experience of a lifetime with family and friends, finishing another Ironman, and this time sub-10 hours. I’ll be headed to the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii in October.

If the KSR is back in 2011, I’ll consider it again!

My full Ironman Brasil race report is available at this link on my blog.

Killington Stage Race, 40+, (Almost) According to Plan June 1, 2010

Posted by Wayne in Race Reports.
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When responding to the story of my bout of food poisoning last Thursday night, Gary emailed me and said “Well, you really care most about the final stage since that’s the one that favors a climber, right?  I figure you’re going to be taking the safe option on tomorrow’s finish, ride a TT that keeps you in the race and have fun on the climb on Monday.  So, you really only need to recover enough to make time cut tomorrow…” Oh Gary…you know me too well. And I would have done that anyway. 🙂

Saturday, Stage 1 Circuit Race, 53 miles
It started spitting light rain when I got off I-91 in Westminster, but never really looked like it would get serious during the rest of the drive to Killington. Even about an hour before the race as I was getting dressed, it still looked like an overcast sky for the day. But then…the rain started to come down.

Turned out to be sort of a mini-repeat of Quabbin. It rained steadily the first lap, we got soaked and it was tough to see at times, but the rain abated and the roads dried up as the race went on and it was dry and sunny for end of the final lap. Things were fast and animated, with Arc-en-Ciel and the CVC boys doing most of the attacking.  I breathed a sigh of relief on the first lap as we hit the steep descent in Plymouth, and Jonny Bold went to the front and motioned for everyone to take it easy. As the race bible said, the race wouldn’t be lost on that little downhill, but it certainly could be lost.

Lap 2, Buckley attacked on Rt. 4, took a couple guys with him, and they were out of sight pretty quickly. In fact, I thought they could possibly be gone for good. Eventually, thanks to a quickening of pace for the KOM and sprint lines, they were reeled in and the rest of the race was uneventful (for me anyway). Nice course, never out of the big ring, stayed near the front and out of trouble. Then with about 5k to go, I slid to the back to make sure I was out of harm’s way for the final/downhill sprint. Steve Rozsko made a nice move close to the finish, taking one other guy with him, and I thought they were going to foil the sprinters. But whoa…that is one fast downhill finish and they were swept up before the line. Finished last in the field, 57th place.

Stage 2, Time Trial, 11 miles
So yeah…time trialing. Doing this race means I’ll do 2 this year. Should I train for these? Yes. Will I start doing so? Hmmm. No.

Luckily, I borrowed Ian’s TT bike, otherwise I probably would have been last. I rode easy for about 45 minutes around 11 AM, to see how my legs and the winds were, and also to gauge whether or not riding down/back to the TT was a good idea. The finish was only a couple miles from home, but I decided the uphill into town would be too much for a “cool down” so I drove to Skyeship and rode the 5 miles to the start (near Long Trail Brewery in Bridgewater) from there. Plus, I got to enjoy the tailwind riding to the start and riding back to the car after the finish.

My legs felt good, I warmed up well and gave it my all but…holy hurricane Batman! There was a cross/head wind all the way down Rt. 4 to the turn, and then a steady 25 mph block head wind on the flats to the turn on River Road. I just got punched and pounded around by the wind like crazy. Buckley was 30 sec. behind me, and passed me in the first 5k, then once I hit the flats, at least 5  other guys passed me. Oh well, I did beat a few guys, 53rd out of 61 starters. 40+ winner Fred Thomas was only beaten on the day  by the top 2 guys in the P-1-2 race, and he was a full 5 1/2 minutes faster than me. He’s one impressive dude.

Stage 3, Road Race, 61 miles
As usual, I felt very good on the third day of racing. I rode down to the start, and my legs came around very quickly. It was about 60 degrees which was nice because I could go sleeveless from the start. An Arc-en-Ciel guy attacked before we even went under the Skyeship bridge (i.e. 50 yards  from the start) and a few guys bridged and boom…they were gone and out of sight before we turned right on Rt. 100. The next 10 miles were downhill, on typically rough VT roads, but I stayed near the front and did a pretty good job of dodging the potholes (or so I thought). OA/Cyclemania started to chase pretty good to keep the gap down for their leader, after we passed through Sherburne. I kept feeling better and better and then…my front tire went flat. I went to the back and rode it flat and hung in there awhile but then I started to become a danger to others with little steering control, and I threw out the anchor. I rode a couple of miles before the tire disintegrated and then stood in the shade waiting for the next field in hopes I could get a wheel. And I waited, and waited. We must’ve been hauling it pretty good because we already had put 5 minutes into the Cat. 4 field. They passed and I literally jumped out into the road in front of the wheel van and…they almost hit me before they looked at me like I was crazy as they passed by. 😦 When the 50+ field approached 10 minutes later, I did the same thing and lucked out because someone had just flatted and they stopped for him. I helped myself to a front wheel (thank you CCB guy with the Bontragers, whoever you are) and continued on.

So what to do now? I rode with the 50+ guy to the base of the KOM climb, hammered up that as hard as I could, and set myself into TT mode the rest of the race. I paid my money; I planned on finishing. Unfortunately, other than a few dropped 50+ riders and an occasional solo dropped Cat.4 rider, I had no companions. I’ll have to say the weather was nice, I felt good, and the scenery was awesome.  And I was very happy to do the dirt road descent in Woodstock solo; it would have been sketchy in a group.

Not much to say about the East Mountain Road climb other than thanks to John Hanson for his words of encouragement just as I hit the climb, and that I saw Elvis standing on the side of the road (I think) I was so far into the red zone. And who’s idea of a cruel joke was that last 1k up to the K1 parking lot? I’m thinking the bottom of that hill would have made a much better finish line 😉

Incredibly, I was only 47 minutes down (remember, I stood still for 25 minutes at one point) and I wasn’t last on GC. Some other poor soul lost almost as much time as I did on the road race, plus 26 minutes at the circuit race. No Lanterne Rouge for me after all.

Thanks to Chris P. for allowing me to stay in his nice ski house right near the main Killington entrance. Nice and quiet, comfy, and a good location for being in the middle of everything. Sunday’s TT didn’t start until 2:45 so I had a nice quiet place to correct student projects and get things ready for the week. And thanks to Beth, my roomie for the weekend, who tolerated me giving her crossword answers way too easily.

Not much going on at Killington in the summer but a few stores/restaurants were open for business. Had dinner at The Garlic (very good) on Saturday and the Grist Mill (so-so Sunday). Gary invited me along on Sunday to eat with him and Silke W., Becky B., Mark G., John G. and Kip S. Good times and interesting post-race conversation. Also got to hear what was going in the FRONT of the race during the hot points on Saturday. 😉

USS Sterling Sets Sail 08 May 2010 May 8, 2010

Posted by wenzel in Race Reports.
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Rain, Rain and More Rain – Sterling RR 2010

All that can be said about today was that it rained and rained hard. We started the race with 70+ registered riders. It was cool (51F) and spitting rain. Well by the end of the first lap the rain was coming down so hard that we had rivers in the road and debris everywhere. In talking to Wayne, my lone team mate in the M35, after the two crashes on Route 12 at the end of the first lap, he was gapped off the back as a 1/3 of the field went to their cars.

The remainder of the field completed the rain shorten race, 5-laps instead of 6-laps.  Although there were numerous attacks nothing stuck. Badger had the best move, rolling off the front with <1 to go, drawing three with him. We got the majority of the riders back by the town green and Badger held on for 4th. Very impressive.

Here are the highlights:

Two crashes on Rt 12 on the first Lap….

Skip Foley ‘is safe at home’ after his impressive white line Double Axel with a Full twist sole slide out on Rt12. really impressive was his regaining the field in his muddy-torn kit. I hope that sweet ride of his is okay.

Standing water at the Rt 12 intersection.

Boulder Sized Debris in at least three places on the course.

Anthony Allessio’s fine finish despite his ‘frost bitten’ body…how was that Space Blanket?

All in all a fun day with an okay result. I was able to nip Kyle Wolf at the line for 7th…they paid 6-deep.

The Very-On-Form Paul Richard’s won again this weekend.

Gary and Craig are racing the 3’s and we’ll get their report later.

BTW. Destroyed my left Speedplay pedal in the rain. The inside needle-bearing ‘blew apart’ during the race, leading to one stiff pedal and one hell of a noise. The axel, titanium is pitted and striated….seems like I will need to by another one. Sucks.

Quabbin Reservoir Classic April 26, 2010

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Yesterday, we had a good team showing at the Quabbin Reservoir Classic. Gary Aspnes, Wayne Prescott, and A. Zane Wenzel competed in the one lap 35+ race. Matt Domnarski and Scott Livingston did the two lap Pro/1/2/3 race. They were out there for the miles, and they got them. Livingston’s full race report can be viewed here.

2010 Tour of the Battenkill April 11, 2010

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I’m bringing this blog alive, but cheating on the race report.

For a full account of our trip to the Tour of the Battenkill, click here.

A. Zane Wenzel, Spike McLaughlin, and I had a great time at yesterday’s classic in Cambridge, New York. This race deserves respect and less criticism. It is a simple event that is a lot of fun to ride.

Mansfield Hollow October 19, 2009

Posted by Wade in Race Reports.
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118462515 Qi2CXRlL IMG_1190Went over to Mansfield Hollow with the family and had a good day of racing. The clouds parted and the sun was shinning brightly, although a cold wind chilled things off just a bit. Perfect for racing. Course was largely the same as last year – 2 sand runs, 2 sets of barriers, a run-up, long off-camber on the dike, and lots of up and down. Scott and Craig were there. Both missed the start I guess. I’ll let them fill in the rest from their end.

Got a front row start position and put myself in 6th position or so has we settled in for the first obstacle, a single barrier just after a slight up hill. Glad I hung back a bit because the 1st or 2nd guy plowed right into it, delaying others, while I had time to react and make it through, now in 3rd place. Half way through the first lap our group of 5 formed. John Moser was the strongest guy in the race and after chasing our group down he rode right through us, taking Doug Aspinwall with him. I hesitated, which I shouldn’t have done. By lap 2, our group was down to 3, Brian Atwood, another guy and myself. By this point, John had dragged Doug to 20 seconds in front of us and then dropped him. We chased Doug the rest of the race. I had a couple of bobbles in the race, once on the 1st sand run, I kinda just fell over. The next was more spectacular. I went wide on a turn, going into some leaves, and some still unknown object, stopped my forward progress cold! I went as* over tea kettle, taking down Brian and causing the other guy to stopped too. We picked ourselves up with no harm to man or machine and we off again. With 3 to go Brian and I dropped the other rider. Brian and I exchanged attacks for the next 2 laps. With 2 to go I gapped him and he chased me down and then with 1 to go he gapped me and I was on the defensive. I caught him just before the last set of barriers, which lead into the wide open field part of the course. He pulled for just a little and then sat up, waiting for me to come by. I rolled through and as I rounded the corner into the uphill I attacked, flew over the barrier and kept the pressure on to grab 3rd place.