2009 Verge Series Race #1 @ Catamount, 9/26/09

Images from Saturday's first race in the 2009 Verge New England Cyclocross Series at Catamount Family Center, Williston Vermont on a spectacular early autumn day.

A group of riders turned up the hill to start another lap.

Roger Absholm, Masters National Champion, won the Masters 35 race convincingly. Between the GMSR and the GMCW, he earns quite a bit of money for himself on his trips to Vermont.

Stephan Marcoux with his pain face on in the Masters 35s.

The 3s race had over 100 entrants, a record for a cyclocross race at this venue. Consequently it was very hectic at the start.

Dry conditions allowed the riders to ride the run up in the woods.

But eventually #130 riding for cyclocrossworld.com broke away and won solo (sorry, didn't get a name).

Natasha Elliot and Mo Bruno-Roy corner hard on the first lap of the Women's race.

Elliot soon broke away and rode solo for most the race, winning alone.

Dan "Grizzly Adams" Timmerman lurked near the head of the field at the start of the Pro/Elite race.

Just like last year, Timmerman rode alone for most of the race. But with Jamie Driscoll not present, no one was able to track him down.

Two determined chasers could not close the gap.

Former Euro-pro Justin Spinelli had his pain face on.

32 additional images posted here (photobucket).


GMCR Verge Series #1 photos coming

Adam Meyerson rides the run up in the woods. An over-exposed image but one that does capture some of the intensity of the race I think.

I spent the afternoon at Catamount Family Center watching the cyclocross races and taking photos: Another day, another bike race. It was a glorious, perfectly clear fall day and I couldn't help but feel that it would have been nice to go for a long bushwhack in some lonely patch of woods, but oh well. There were many people at this race who I know from my days ineffectually racing a bike so it was sort of like going to a class reunion, and that part of the day was fun.

I will post more photos tomorrow morning.


Green Mountain Cyclocross Weekend (2008): Jamey Driscoll and Chris Jones

The two main protagonists of the recent 2009 CrossVegas race also rode together at the 2008 Green Mountain Cyclocross Weekend. I'll be at the 2009 event with my camera and will post some images here. I will also try and squeeze in some time in the woods as the fall colors emerge more with each passing day, and I feel that I have spent enough time chasing skinny guys (mostly) on bikes with a camera of late.

The hole shot: Cyclocross from JG on Vimeo.

Video of the start of last year's GMCW Sunday race. Images from 2008 here.


Why it's hard to post much here anymore

112 miles from JG on Vimeo.

So I have a new job. I'm grateful for this situation, these are hard times as the Big Deleveraging keeps rolling along... Three years ago I lived in Burlington, changed jobs, and so moved to Waterbury to be closer to the new job, which has now ended. So now I make the trip every day in reverse.

It's really not that bad, 28 miles one way, and probably 27 of the distance is on wide open Vermont interstate. But commuting is a tremendous waste of time and I can feel my muscles atrophying from sitting down all day staring into a screen, and as the seasons change and the days get shorter, it's dark in the morning when I leave and dark in the evening when I get home. Compounding the situation is the fact that I can see where I used to live in Burlington from my office, when I'm bored I can daydream about living on shabby, postindustrial Riverside Avenue again.

The whole present situation is kind of dispiriting and I find the idea of coming home, sitting down and trying to come up with something to post here to be burdensome... so posting will be quite irregular going forward. Maybe I'll try podcasting from my car, I certainly have the time.


Last batch of 2009 GMSR photos posted

I spent a little time quickly sorting through my images from the 2009 GMSR. The photographer from the Burlington Free Press put up a gallery of images from the criterium that were very good and which demonstrate the difference between 'amateur' and 'professional'.

Cycling information is the most searched-for material on this site, however, and most of the events I 'cover' (the GMSR, local cyclocross events, etc.) receive scant coverage in the media so I guess I can describe myself as a marginally successful citizen cycling photojournalist.

The first moments of the Pro-1 criterium on Church Street: 14 images from this stage are posted here (Photobucket album).

Stage 3: Marshall Ambros with his pain face on in the Category 3 race. He bounced back to win the Criterium the next day: 18 images from GMSR Stage 3 posted here.

The Pro-1 racers contest a points sprint in the GMSR Stage 2 circuit race. The circuit race was the stage where I had the most time to just hang out with my camera and I live very to the course... so I took the greatest number of photos: 34 images are posted here.

As a final note, I have it on very good authority that the miscreant responsible for this situation described in the stage 3 communique was none other than a certain ex-pro racer from New England, currently suspended for a doping infraction:
"Team CCB is fined $150USD for having its support vehicle in the race caravan from Forest Dale the finish (4H3) and disregarding the Chief Referee’s specific prerace instruction not to do so."
And I thought that once riders were suspended that they were not supposed to be involved in racing in any way.


2009 GMSR Criterium: Svensk Power

As usual at the end of Labor Day Monday, I am dirty and tired and ready to fall asleep at a ridiculously early hour. Here are some photos from today, I was working and didn't have much time to roam the course with a camera.

The Swedish Cykelcity.se team had a great day, winning the stage and moving Johan Lindgren into third overall thanks to aggressive riding.

The pro men final overall GC podium. The Vermont artisan vodka given to the sprint classification leaders was a popular prize all day long.

Long time sponsor Earthycars.com parked a smart car on the course as an marketing device, but used a Porsche as a pace vehicle.

The Category 3 men line up for their race with Lake Champlain in the background.

Marshall Ambros won the 3s race in what was probably the ride of the day, riding solo and almost lapping the field in a bold attempt to recapture the overall lead. He fell short by five seconds.

Ex-Soviet National Team rider Dmitry Buben won the Masters 50 in a solo move. I have to admire the lifetime dedication to the bike of some of the masters riders.

The day started with a fast and furious Juniors race.


GMSR Stage 3: Nothing but blue skies

The word of the day: "cerulean"...

Some images from today's stage finish atop Appalachian Gap. The weather was truly spectacular, cool, cloudless and only a light breeze. I have been in this location when standing around has been pretty cold and unpleasant so the sunshine and pleasant temperatures are most appreciated.

A bird's eye view of the finish area as the race wound down.

Andres Diaz won the Pro-1 race alone.

Local rider Jamie Driscoll finished just behind Diaz, but showed the strain of sprinting on an 18% grade.

The GMSR is an international event, the race has always attracted a large Canadian (Quebec) contingent and I've heard Spanish spoken at the finish as well. The year a Swedish team flew over to participate and one of their riders, Johan Lindgren (in red) sits in sixth overall going into the final stage.

Jake Hollenbach acknowledged the cheers as he rode to the finish, perhaps thinking of tomorrow's criterium, which he won in 2008.

Steven Black won the Category 2 race (he also won the circuit race yesterday). He is only a junior and doesn't look like he needs to shave yet... which is impressive.

Local rider Matt Mainer tried to hold on to the overall lead in the Category 2 race.

Deja vu all over again. Roger Absholm is dominating the Masters 40 race, holding the overall, mountain and sprint jerseys going into today's stage...which he also won.

Just like in the pros: the winner of the Juniors race nonchalantly zipped up his jersey 100 meters from the finish.


2009 GMSR Stage 2 images: P1, Cat 2, M40s, Juniors

Some images with very little commentary of the afternoon races of stage two of the Green Mountain Stage Race, held on a 23 mile rolling loop in Mad River Valley. The weather was great and the fields were large and frisky which unfortunately meant that there were plenty of crashes. There's nothing like the sight of broken bikes and riders sporting ripped lycra and large amounts of fresh road rash to make me glad that I don't have a racing license any more.

Roger Aspholm gets the win in the Master 40s race.

An Armed Forces Cycling Team rider tried an early break in the Pro-1 race.

The field followed shortly after, not too concerned by a lone rider.

About 60 miles later there was a hectic field sprint won by a BikeReg-Cannondale rider.

The sprint was too fast and hectic for a big victory salute.

In the Category 2 race, an early break tried to establish a gap.

A UVM rider in the field.

A reconstituted break in the Category 2 race climbs Rt 100.

A solo rider took the win and was too spent to raise his arms in victory.

Masters 40s climbing.

Less than 10 miles into their race, and the Juniors field was already blown apart by a large crash.

A truck full of broken bikes.