2015 KMC Cyclocross Festival

Today was day two of the KMC Cyclocross Festival in Providence, Rhode Island. The event is commonly known as the “Providence Crossfest,” or just “Providence.” The race has become one of the most significant on the national cyclocross calendar, and it is the largest and most successful race in New England.

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The Saturday race was a UCI C1 event and is a candidate to become part of the World Cup. The only race in the United States that is part of the World Cup is CrossVegas, and that just happened this year. I’ve done variations of Providence many times in the past. This venue at Roger Williams Park, hosted the national championships several years ago. The Sunday race is C2, but still competitive. Yesterday, I watched the men’s and women’s races live on the Internet. The coverage was good and it was great to see Jeremy Powers, a rider who uses Horst Engineering’s cross spikes, take the victory. He also crushed it last weekend at the GP Gloucester, New England’s other huge race.

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I missed last year with my broken shoulder. This year, I was only able to make the Sunday event because we got back late on Friday after two weeks in Japan. After ULTRA-TRAIL Mt. FUJI, it was Debbie’s turn to support me, so she and the kids piled into the van with all  of our stuff. We briefly stopped at the NipMuck Trail Marathon. Conveniently, it was on the way. My 12:30 P.M. start was convenient too, but the problems was it felt like 1:30 A.M. Japan time. The jet lag was fierce.

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I knew it would be hard to get the legs turning after three weeks off of my bike, but I wanted to do the race because it has the most competitive 35+ field in the region. The local races are fun, but sometimes, it feels good to do a big one. Providence is big, with a full on expo and three days of racing. The unofficial kickoff is the New England Builders’ Ball, which was Friday night. I was really sad to miss it this year after being there in 2014, but my colleague and teammate Arthur Roti, was joined by our teammate, Zane Wenzel to host the Horst Spikes booth.

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Horst Engineering had a successful night at the Ball, and the Horst Engineering Cycling Team had a successful weekend racing in Providence. Matt Domnarski, Pat Cunningham, and Paul Nyberg all had solid results in the 50+ race both days. Matt and Pat got top 12 today. Art and Wade Summers raced both days in the 35+ and I joined them today. I wish there was a 40+ race, but it wasn’t to be.

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Yesterday, we had a lot of rain, though it dried out by the end of the day. Today, the course was damp, but the mud was tackle or completely dry and rutted in spots. The pace of today’s race was fast. I cramped badly with three to go. My right quad was acting up and I had to back off a bit to get it to calm down. I had no “pop” and struggled a bit on some of the technical sections, but thankfully, I cleared all of the flyovers without walking or crashing. I saw a few wrecks, but stayed on my bike, and feel good about that. I’ll come around. It was good to blast it hard for 49 minutes.

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Another reason for enjoying the race today was because we got to see some old friends. I missed Jon Gallagher, but heard his voice from behind a barrier. He was busy in the results trailer. His One2Go timing business is very successful and he does most of the big races around the country. Jon and I raced together more than 20 years ago and spent the summer of 1994 on the kermesse circuit in Belgium. Hopefully I see him at another race this fall, or at least in Asheville, North Carolina for the national championships.

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It was fun to swing by Richard Sachs‘ tent. We go way back with Richard. My first real road bike (after my Shogun 400 and a steel Trek), was my 1989 Richard Sachs. That frameset still hangs in my office at work. I’ve been converting my circa 1997 Richard Sachs cross bike to a single speed and hope to debut it sometime this fall in advance of the national championships in January. Richard has a very successful team and I love his branding with House Industries. Richard no longer lives in Chester (one of my favorite Connecticut towns), but we enjoyed visiting him there particularly on the 4th of July during the years when we were in town for the 4 on the 4th Road Race.

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Debbie and I reconnected with longtime friends, Erik and Sue Grimm. Erik is one of my all-time favorite athletes. He has succeeded at everything from triathlon, to adventure racing, skiing, swimming, cycling, to running. Lately, he has been crushing masters fields in cyclocross and he scored third place both yesterday and today. Erik is a fellow member of YPO, so he also has to juggle family, with work, community service, and endurance sports. Erik, Sue, Debbie, and I have had some good times in far-flung places like Sydney, Australia, but we haven’t seen each other in the Northeast for several years. They had kids (triplets) several years ago, so it was great to introduce our kids to their kids. At the park, they got to horse around, climb trees, and ride their bikes. Both of our children did the kids race, and then we packed up and headed home, still jet lagged, but satisfied that our reentry weekend with the LEGO 5K, NipMuck, and Providence, was a success.

After a big cross race, we return to more local grassroots events next weekend when the Connecticut Series of CX continues at Mansfield Hollow.

Race Results

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@thecubscouts #pinewoodderby never gets old. Pack 157 Bolton, Connecticut #cubscouts So that little injury caused by my @renocxnats crash on Saturday afternoon wasn’t so little after all. It’s a broken leg (fibula). Prognosis is good, but it hurts like heck. My blog post report with blow by blow details is linked in my profile. #cxnats #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #crossisboss - - -

This #lifedeathcyclocross stuff is true!!!! I crashed out of the Singlespeed Championship @renocxnats (on the dreaded off-camber) but not before having more fun. @artroti43 raced on the frosty course ❄️ at day break. 🚴🏽 We met a lot more @horsteng #crossspikes customers. I hung with little bunny hopper 🐰 Miles, the Junior 11-12 year old Silver Medalist.🥈I cheered for Nic, who represented @the_ccap in the Junior 15-16 age group. @sportstert and Iva came down from Tahoe to cheer LOUDLY for me. 🎺 I got my badly sprained ankle taped and iced. I had a beer. 🍺 I’m even looking forward to my red eye flight home ✈️ . Best of all, I’ll see @trailrunningmom and the kids on Sunday. I can’t explain the sensation, but despite the pain, I’m ready for next #Cyclocross season to begin... after some rest. #teamhorstsports #cxnats #horstengineering @parkavebikeshop #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross #crossiscoming You could say that at least for this week, I’m married to my #bicycle - - -

@renocxnats #cxnats @seven_cycles #sevencycles #teamhorstsports #horstengineering #crossspikes @horsteng #chapelofthebells #Cyclocross #lifedeathcyclocross Good day representing @horsteng at @renocxnats in the 45-49 age group. It’s a great course. The wind was blowing hard, but the sun finally came out. I’m happy with 37th place but should have made a move to get to 29th, which was 30 seconds ahead. That’s a long way when you are going flat out and cramping. 4,500 foot elevation was a factor. I’m disappointed that they cut one lap of my race when I wasn’t close to getting lapped by the leaders. You train this hard and come all this way; and you want to get the most racing for the $ and time invested. They only let 25 riders do the full six laps. The only positive to come out of that was that I watched fellow New Englander @adammyerson execute a perfect final sprint to win the Stars and Stripes again. Teammate @artroti43 had a good ride too. 
@seven_cycles #sevencycles #horstengineering #teamhorstsports @bicycleseastct #crossspikes #cxnats #renocxnats #Cyclocross #crossisboss @therichardsachs didn’t have the race he hoped for but it was still great to see him @renocxnats and “pit” for him. He said he officially started his second off season, but first of 2018. @artroti43 and I played soigneur/mechanic for 90 minutes, but minus the massage! atmo #renocxnats #richardsachs #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #hauteframebuilding #Cyclocross #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross I previously hadn’t published this image, but it recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2017 @appalachianmountainclub Photo Contest for the People Outdoors category. Check out my blog (link in profile) for the interesting story of his photo (shot with this iPhone 6s), a trip report from this amazing Maine adventure, and past contest history. I love this image of two of my favorite women. I’m barred from submitting images to the 2018 contest, but I’ll be back in 2019. #appalachianmountainclub #baxterstatepark #katahdin Congratulations to Master Park, the Park Family, and the entire team at Park’s U.S. #Taekwondo at the Grand Opening of the new facility in the former VFW building. Our kids love it! So much better than being next door to the pawn shop and liquor store.😊#tkd 🇺🇸🇰🇷 This morning, the @trinitycollege Main Quad was bathed in beautiful sunshine ☀️but it was frigid and the wind was blowing! ❄️ The chapel was packed with an overflow crowd to celebrate the (shortened) life of a lovely friend. She will be missed. #circleoflife 🌏

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