MFG Cyclocross Series - Race #3

MFG series race number 3 today at Five Mile Lake Park in Federal Way. If 'cross was a school subject, we'd score a perfect attendance record from Mrs. Cowbell, since we've also hit race 1 and 2 in the series, so our report card is looking pretty good.

Today's race site is about an hour away for us, the old guy race (that be me), scheduled for 9:30 AM. With travel time, unload and warm up - pretty early morning - so I, uh, skipped it. Yeah, you can see how motivated I've been to race lately. We elected to just hit the kids races later in the afternoon.

Even if dad is lame (that be me), both kids raced today - and that was cool. We've also never been to this location, so that was cool also - something different. Nice site for a 'cross race, very compact for good spectator viewing. One uphill running section, a sand section, lots of grassy twists and turns. Parking was tight - really tight. We unbelievably scored a spot near the finish line and festivities - helpful with kids, wife, getting supplies, unloading/loading bikes, etc. Meanwhile, race announcer warning riders the sheriff was about to start towing cars illegally parked nearby. Ah, joy.

Ian once again did battle in the Junior Boys 10 - 12 class. He seemed to be doing okay at the beginning of the race, then I lost sight of him for awhile, only to be appear off the back at bit at the finish. Told me he lost the chain on the uphill running section, and it took awhile for him figure out remount it. He was mad that occurred, but I explained bad luck is part of racing - just got to continue - which he did with a nice sprint at the finish. I explained that getting mad was actually a good thing. Proves you care about how well you're doing and being a bit competitive. All races are a learning experience and you have many more to follow. I showed him a few times how to remount the chain afterwards, though we've gone over it before. Easy to forget, since during our usual rides, never been a problem. He was quietly hacked for a while after the race, but got over it and is ready to race again.

We left before the results were posted - it can sometimes take awhile - so we'll check online later. At race #2, he scored 15th place out of 26 kids - not bad at all - especially considering most kids are on race teams and sport full 'cross bikes, clipless pedals and the whole schtick. Ian is still racing a mountain bike with platform pedals and we just wing this for fun. He had similar results at race #1. Plan is to hit as many races of the series as possible and collect points via consistency. After two races, Ian was in 13th place overall - pretty cool. Still, the main intent is to just have fun and gain experience. If he continues to dig this, I'll set up him with a 'cross bike for next season. By then he'll also be 5+ feet tall and fit a 700c bike without a problem - plus probably kick my ass.

The start of the Juniors race - boys and girls. From really young kids up to age 12. Scored separately, but race together. Mixed in the crowd is Ian, racing Junior Boys 10 - 12. The older kids, up to age 17 or so, have already left the start line - so they're mixed in as well. I'm psyched to see a ton of kids racing 'cross this year. I've said it before, 'cross is perfect for kids - short, fast, not that technical, parents can watch almost the action. Perfect.

Amy raced the kiddie class today - first time ever on her own - without training wheels. Yes! Lots of little ones lined up for a go at it. The race was supposed to be super short, just a section on the grass. However, once they past the finish line - they all kept going - even through the sand section! The improvised finish line moved to the barrier section - hilarious. They probably would have tried lifting their bikes over the barriers if not stopped. Amy said it was the longest kiddie race she's ever done.

The kiddies take on the sand section. Awesome!

Go Amy go!!

MFG Cyclocross dudes - thanks! We're having a blast with the series.

After the race, stopped at Alki Beach in West Seattle to goof around a bit. Lunch at this Irish place - mmm,mmm good - Irish stew. Nice place with a water view.

View from Alki Beach - not too shabby. I tell you, living in the Pacific Northwest ain't too bad.

With that, I conclude this week's edition of the 'cross report. Stay tuned for future broadcasts. Adios.