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Cross on the Rock News #14

release by Cross on the Rock

November 12, 2009 (Nanaimo, BC) – WOWsers we have a tonne of stuff for you guys to tide you over until this weekend and then the series final preview…. I actually had to split this in two as we had too much information for just one update! (Note all photos are from Katie Duncan Rabien with the exception of Norm Post Race from Dave Shishkoff)

Special thanks to Jamie and Susan Emery (from Action Motorcycles) for hosting Wendy and I last weekend!

PHOTO LINKS (you might notice how many people were wearing Short Sleeve Jerseys on Sunday – 14c in November!!):

Photos from Davegan here.

The Rabien Collection
Saturday’s photos here.

Sunday’s photos here.

Photos from Ian Craib our race director for the last race of the series here.

And more from the NISSCCOTU from James Young here.

Tick Alert from Children of the Corn Cross at Sluggett
A note from our Saltspring Island Coffee Representative Bryn Shapperd: “I just pulled a tick off of our dog Clover. It looked like a dried blob of mud which is unlike any tick I’ve seen in the past.

You might want to let other dog owners at the race today know, so they can check their pooches.

RACE REPORT for Cross on the Rock #4: Children of the Corn Cross (Wendy Simms)
Finally. Some REAL cross weather! Four for four Cross on the Rock races have been sunny and dry we were due for some m.u.d. And that is exactly what was served up for the Double Cross weekend in Victoria. Mud. Mud. Mud.. It had absolutely poured all week long. The kind of rain that even keeps people away from the mall. Not great conditions for race organizers and volunteer turnout but course designer Jason Eagles must have bribed his crew with pure gold because there were a dozen people helping out Friday night in the rain. In less than 2 hours they had a 2.5km loop that wove through a boggy farmers field, a corn field with knee deep mud, an up and over, some bermed out woods, a super slick muddy farm road, creek crossing and a beer tent with a giant Malachai suspended from the roof scary enough to give you nightmares. If you don’t know who Malachai is, rent Children of the Corn this weekend. I double dog dare you.

Beginner Race
Just about the time most people would be deciding whether or not to pack up their bikes and head to the race, the clouds parted and the sun came out. ButŠ..the damage had been done. There was no drying out the mud that day. A small beginners field headed out, everyone watching to see how long a lap might take. A painful 12minutes later the questions were answered. The tough conditions spread everyone out quickly with Jeff Doyle (Aviawest) taking the early lead on Brent Chan (PIH) and Kris Rice (Six Up). They would hold their positions throughout the race. The womens race was much the same with Clare Squires, Monica Birch and Sandi Heal (PIH) spreading out on lap one and holding their places to the end. Not much was seen of young Brodie Hay (Healthy Habits) until he surfaced 30 minutes later looking like he had been chewed up and spit out by the corn field demons. 22min prime: Monica Birch.

The sun must have lulled the locals into thinking that it would be a nice day of (dry) cross racing because 27 intermediate racers showed up to play. Little did they know the horrors that awaited. The race proved to be the most competitive of the day as a group of 4 riders battled it out for the entire race. Although Jordan Maynard from Vancouver was new to the sport, he excelled on foot through the corn maze, Geoff Pendrel (Wheelers), with his superior bike handling skills, closed gaps in the slick mud, while Roland Rabien (Triple shot) and Guy Gensey (Russ Hayes) used their cx racing experience to their advantage. At one point, it looked like Rabien might take his first Cross on the Rock win, but he could not shed Maynard who outran him in the cornfield and stole the victory. Pendrel finished an impressive third after Gensey fell back on the last lap. All 4 racers fell to the ground at the end of the race, grimacing, covered in mud and barely able to speak. 22min prime: Jordan Duncan. Last not lapped Andy Brinton.

Master Men and Open Women
As the Master men and the open women were called to line, the conditions took a major downturn, The skies opened up and poured pure wet fury onto the poor racers. Malachai’s revenge for running through his corn field is my guess. Brad Colins (Sugoi) took the early lead in his not-so-white-anymore kit but tried to ride the corn field and lost his early lead when Dave Holden (Pro City Racing) bridged up with legend Alison Sydor (Rocky Mountain) who started 30seconds after the master men. The 2 were soon shed by Sydor. Holden held on for the win, Collins retained his second place standing and Barry Rempel (OBB) displayed an impressive performance to take the last podium position. All other master racers would be “double chicked” as recent transplant Mical Dyck (Trek Toronto/Terrascape) came in behind Rempel to claim second in the open women category. Glenowyn Carlson (Team Alliance) proved to be tough in the harsh conditions and took third place in the star studded open women’s field. 22min prime: Dave holden. Last not lapped: Kurt Knock & Jen Erlendson.

By the time the expert men were called to the line the wrath of Malachai had subsided and the sun was out again. However, the course had steadily degraded throughout the day. The course would claim a couple of riders due to mechanicals (broken bar & flat) and a couple of riders abandoned out of pure disgust. Norm Thibault (Frontrunners) got the hole shot but when crowd favorite Craig Richey (Blue Competition) did an impressive nose dive up and over his bars, Tyler Trace (Trek-Red Truck) and Kevin Noiles (Bicicletta) took the opportunity to drop the masses. Trace would hold his lead to the end. Richey eventually dislodged himself from the mudpit to chase back up to second but he could not close to within less than a minute of Trace. Noiles rounded out the podium for third. 22min prime Michael Jordan. last not lapped Troy Woodburn.

RACE REPORT for Cross on the Rock #5: Cameron Cross (Wendy Simms)
Well, Sunday’s Cameron Cross race could not possibly have been more different than the Children of the Corn Cross at Sluggett Farm the day before. Blue sky. Sun shining. Course weaving through the manicured grounds of the Juan de Fuca Recreation Center. The only thing reminiscent of Saturday was the heavy legs from the effort the day before (or the shame of abandoning the race – you know who you are). The IRC crew had done a great job of setting up the event. The smell of traditional Belgium waffles greeted the racers as they registered, the 2.5km course wound up and down and around the side of the grassy hill and there was post race chili for all involved.

Only a few brave Beginners made the return trip for Sunday’s race. Perhaps the mud at Sluggett Farm had scared them away Š.Brent Chan (PIH) took the opportunity to lead the race from start to finish. He was pushed from behind, not by the other beginner men but by the beginner women. All 3 of the women finished before another XY was in sight. The Tansley twins, coaxed into racing by the Rabien regulars swept the top 2 spots with their fresh legs. Rowena Tansley (Penticton Cycling Association) took first place and Caroline Tansley from Victoria rolled in with the exact same smile in a déjà vue moment for second place. Monica Birch from Ladysmith was happy with third place after her efforts in the mud wrestling event the day before. The rest of the beginner mens field finished up unashamed at being “bloused” by such a good looking field. Ian Linseth from Victoria was second and John Dower third. It was a battle of the twelve year olds for the primes as Chris MacLeod (IRC) won the 22min prime and Brodie Hay (Healthy Habits) won the Last not Lapped prime.

Once again the Intermediate race was the biggest and most competitive race of the day. Twenty nine racers started and spectators were treated to a variety of intense 3-4 up battles throughout the race. Kevin Knock (Everti) took it out fast stringing out the field while clocking a 6:17 lap 1. Someone might want to mention to him that our primes are of the non-traditional 22minute kind. The effort would prove deadly to Knock as the detonation was massive but he kept the crowd cheering as he bunny-hopped over the barriers. But it was Roland Rabien (Tripleshot) that had the bit between his teeth in front of the home town crowd. He looked rabid for the win as he took over the lead, frothing at the mouth for his first win. He stayed focused lap after lap. Geoff Pendrel (OBB) chased the entire race but could not close in on the rabid Rabien and had to settle for second. Meanwhile, vegan, Dave Shishkoff (Organic Athlete) must have been slipped some beef in his recovery drink as he shocked the crowd making his way up to the meat of the race with regular front pack rider Guy Gensey (Russ Hayes) and powerhouse rider Matt Dilay (IRC). The crowds went wild. However it was 16 year old Michael Brinton from Powell River that snuck in and stole the last podium position. 22min prime Regan Price. Last not lapped Derek Steel.

Master/Open women
The Master/Open women race looked initially to be a replay of the day before. Brad Collins (Sugoi) took it out hard and strung out the field with a 6:05 lap 1 but today he looked strong enough to make it stick. Alison Sydor (Rocky Mountain) chewed up the mens field almost immediately, closing in on Collins despite a 30second handicap. But lap after lap Collins kept Sydor at bay by 5-15 seconds. However disaster struck for Collins on the last lap when he disappeared off the grid with a mechanical and was spotted running the downhill. This allowed Sydor to blouse the entire master field yet again easily taking the $150 cash prize from Action Motorcycles for the weekend. Collins tragedy also opened the door for a slightly hung over Dave Holden (Procity Racing) to snatch the victory in the Master category and long time Cross on the Rocks sponsor, Jim Pearson (Aviawest), to take second. Collins hung on for third despite his bad luck. Despite the solid racing at the front of the Masters race, spectators were more interested in the ding dong battle between Barry Rempel (OBB) and birthday boy Jamie Emery (Pro City Cycles) who both looked a little rough and smelled of booze. Rempel would not go easy on his buddy and took him in the finishing stretch to steal one of the last top 10 spots. Mical Dyck (Trek Toronton/Terrascape) was the uncontested bridesmaid again, securing her the $100 cash prize from Action Motorcycles for the weekend. The third place spot however was a heated battle between Chelsea Bilsarrow (Local Ride) and Jen Erlendson (Organic Athlete). Lap after lap Erlendson stuck to the wheel of Bilsbarrow. It wasn’t until the last lap that Bilsbarrow could shake her loose and rolled in third, securing her the $50 cash prize from Action Motorcycles for the weekend over Glenowyn Carlson (Team Alliance). 22min Paul Brend. Last not lapped Derek Tripp.

The final race of the day was much more technical for the experts as the previous races had opened up the grass field and corners were slick. There was mud of the viscous kind to deal with. Tyler Trace (Trek) looked to want a pair of aces for the weekend as he took the early lead but Craig Richey (Blue Competition Cycles) had other plans. Richey quickly overtook Trace and dropped him, gaining seconds every lap to win by a over a minute. Trace hung on for second while Rob Britton (Trek Procity) rode a steady race for third. Continuing his streak of bad luck, Steve Bachop (IRC), a DNF after demolishing his derailleur, was heard stating that “he will only be racing a singlespeed from now on.” 22min prime Dave Huntley. Last not lapped Mat Hewitt (only because Norm gave him a bracelet that said “HARDEN THE F**K UP” on the start line.

Series Schedule
– HISTORY: September 13th. Series Race #1 FSA Cup at Beban Park
– HISTORY: October 4th. Series Race #2: Kona Kup at Bowen Park in Nanaimo
– DONE and HISTORY!!: October 18th. Series Race #3. Crosstoberfest at Providence Farm in Duncan.
– UNBELIEVABLY FUN!!: October 31st. Nutcase Intercontinental Single Speed Championships of the Universe! Was at Fletchers Farm.
– SO DUN and still washing my gear: November 7th and 8th. Series Races #4 Children of the Corn Cross (EPIC) and #5 Cameron Cross will be in Victoria. #4 at a new venue at Slugget Farms in Central Saanich and #5 a new course at JDF
– November 22nd. Series Race #6 and Series FINAL. OrganicAthlete-egan Dave and Ian Craib are organizing a new venue and thus a new course at beautiful Hogwarts Castle. OK it is not Hogwarts but it is Shawnigan Lake school which should be awesome!

Sanctioned by Cycling BC. Cross on the Rock – presenting cross races on Vancouver Island. Starting in 2003. Finishing in November of 2009.

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