Thursday, September 29, 2011

2011 Hogsback CX Course

The race course has been laid out via GPS, Changed significantly from the original course mapped back in August to shorten up the lap. Kids will not do the new section and will go straight to the run up.

Register early!!!! This is going to be a great weekend. Click HERE to get to the site and look for the entry form or link on the to the Bikereg site on the right side of the page.

Thanks to the following sponsors for coming through.

Tomahawk Mainstree Inc.
Tomahawk Chamber of Commerce
Tomahawk Internet Cafe
Tomahawk Surplus Store
Redeye Brewing Company - Wausau
Van's What's Brewin
Sammy's Subs
Sprocketz Bike Shop - Weston
Infinit Nutrition
Planet Bike
Clif Bar
and more to come....

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


I look forward to this race each and every year.  Full of tradition staying with the Performa and BikeHub/Specialized teams and lining up for 40 miles with close to 2000 other riders.

I pull in to our beautiful home for the weekend at around 2 and by 3:30 we split up and some go pre-ride the course and register while others hung back by the cabin.  Nate Jasperson decides to go for a ride and after thinking about my week leading up to the race I decided to join him for a ride around the lake.  We certainly were outsiders to the road riding scene of Hayward Wisconsin where we encountered one of these road rider creatures.  This character clearly looked at us in disgust as we waived in passing leading to his ultimate snubbing of us and our kind gesture besides who rides mountain bikes on the road in Hayward Wisconsin on the week of the 40?  It was a nice ride over the river and through the woods back to our cabin for the weekend.

Upon our arrival to the cabin we descended into Telemark to pick up our bags and number plates, plus check out the merch out on display.  These guys have the registration dialed and all were excited and happy to help which at times may not always seem to be the case at other events, so things were going pretty well up to this point.

We get back to enjoy some dinner that Nate and Kim made.  Frankly, this may need to be the go forward prerace food as I felt awesome the next day despite a couple of Leinies Oktoberfest that were consumed with dinner.  Prepped our stuff for race day and off to bed.

We had an early wake up to go stage our bikes.  The plan was to get there and get in line to stage our bikes as close to the front as possible.  Normally I like to stay to either side and not the middle but found I would in past races get lost out the back cause the faster wheels to follow were going through the center as a large group.  So I staged about 5 rows back behind the preferred start punks (aka lucky bastards) took a look at where we were at in hopes to remember that same spot at 9:45 after 1900 more people put their bikes in behind you....ha...the likeliest of scenarios.

So we pull up to our normal parking area for the race the same spot that Brett has parked for the last 8 years only to find a wedding was going down that day (what a bad choice on day since if you are local you know it's cheqfat weekend.)  so we parked in front of the building anyway and did the stretch, snack, stretch, warmup, use the portajohn, stretch, use the porta john routine.  Then and only then we could go to staging.

The start of the race went off without the cannon as it didn't fire when it was supposed to but no worries as there wasn't much of an issue due to the general population and preferred start mixer that always happens when the gun goes off and we always catch the back group of the preferred starters.  As always there were a few hard brakes but seemed less than in years past.  I stuck onto Brett's wheel as long as I could until just before Rosie's field and the trail closed up, I went to the left, he was somewhere in the center I think, but in reality he was already gone so I was now on my own to chase.  At this point I sat in comfortably in the top 100 or so and I think I knew this cause I was recognizing many people in this group like Joel Hynes, Randy, Tim Ek and many others so I was pretty happy.  I would hold this and pass on the climbs for about the first five miles.

About five miles in I get a funny wobble in my rear wheel just before a climb which led to a wheel buzzing.  I stopped immediately on the side of the trail to assess the damage thinking I blew another hub, but was surprised to see that my quick release had come undone and flipped open.  So as 150 or more people flew by in the few minutes I calmly flipped the bike over and make sure that I kept the wheel aligned correctly and that it was tight.  Somewhere during this process I didn't realize that my seat bag became opened and lost all of the contents so I hoped to not get a flat or break a chain.  After that fiasco I chased up the hill to begin recovering the spots I had lost.  I had a difficult time finding a good group to ride with.  Each group I caught I would get to the front thinking I could pull and then cycle through, but each time I did so I looked back to see no one was there.  This would happen well past OO.  I would again face a tense moment when two riders came together in the middle of the trail which pushed a rider into me.  Luckily we both saved it and marched on up the hills, but from there I lost Ek who had caught me seconds before the crash took place.  This really made me mad cause if I wanted to make a move to push for a good placing he would be the one I would need to stick with no matter what.

From there I would continue to fly up the climbs push hard on the fire roads and ride strong up fire tower hill.  At this point each year I feel a cramp coming on at the top, but also each year I get motivated to push the limits and make my move once I hit the birkie trail.  From the time the guy announcing placing on the course (I wonder how he is keeping track of 300+ by the time he got to me) I went from 300 after losing so much time 5 miles in to 340 and then come through to telemark on Jshoe's wheel finishing in 276th out of 1919 finishers.  I do know I can ride a better race than that, but I did set a new PR for me at 2h37min and really I can live with that.

Tradition doesn't end with the race, however, we migrated back to the cabin to discuss things like salads, goats, and the methods behind the superman costume and after some stories were shared we then visited the original (OG) Famous Daves.  It was a great race weekend and it really reminds me why I got into this whole racing thing to begin with so thanks to Nate and Kim for setting up the cabin and dinner and to everyone out there that shared the great time.  

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hogsback CX Race is on!

Come get some on 11/12/2011 at Bradley Park in Tomahawk, WI.  Cyclocross racing starts at 10am with the kids race with the experts and pros at 1pm.  Flannels, costumes, and moustaches are highly is afterall taking place in the northwoods and besides who says you can only wear costumes on Halloween!

Kids Race is $10
"B" and "C" races are $25
"A" race is $30

There may be a hill climb challenge as well after it's all said in done depends on how many takers/racers there are.