9.29.2011

Dirty pictures: More Nor'Easter cyclocross race images

Images from the cyclocross race held at North Beach, Burlington on 9/24/2011 as part of the Nor'Easter festival held at various venues along the waterfront.  

Ian Field and Tom Van Den Bosch race in the late afternoon sun.
Some of these images were used in the previous post but these have more elaborate post processing so perhaps the quality on these is a little better.

Nicolas Bazin showed the strain of the heavy, muddy course.

The frentic start of the pro men's race.
The local CBS affiliate declined to send a crew to cover the event itself but did make sure to have crew talking to some very unhappy Canadians on the day after the race.

The race did tear up the turf pretty badly but I'm pretty sure that with some grass seed and hay for mulch that there won't be any sign of the race when the park opens again in 2012.  People should just chill out.

A gallery with images from the Juniors/3s, Women's, and Pro men's races can be viewed here

9.25.2011

Water, water (and mud) everywhere: Nor'Easter Cross images

Images from the Nor'Easter Cyclocross Race, September 24, held at North Beach, Burlington. It rained on the days prior to the event, soaking the ground and turning pretty much the entire course into a heavy, slippery mud bath.

UK National Champion Helen Wyman flew through the mud in the women's race.
(Ted King watching in the background.)
Laura Van Gilder spun sideways on a flat section on the first lap.
Pro mountain biker Lea Davison had an easier time than most in the mud.

Amy Dombrowski rode in second for most of the day...
Until she snagged course tape and had to complete the race on foot, winding up 8th.
Wyman had plenty of time to celebrate her victory.  
Wyman:  "Racing in mud is like custard and ice cream to me..."
Women's podium
Spray flew at the Pro men start. 
The pro men had to contend with the thickest mud of the day.
It was a struggle to ride even flat sections.
More mud.
The pits were a busy place. 
Near the end of the race, it was down to Ian Field and Tom Van Den Bosch.
Waiting and watching for a slip-up. 
Justin Lindine was top US finisher. 
At the end, Field forced a separation and won alone.
Men's podium:  Tom Van Den Bosch, Ian Field, Nicolas Bazin
More photos to come...

9.23.2011

I remember when: Cyclocross at North Beach

Nice straight lines for the pit at the Nor'easter Cross at North Beach.
Speaking from experience, it helps to use a guideline when setting the stakes... 
Back in the 1990s, I lived in Burlington and raced a bike quite ineffectually, mostly on the road, but also cyclocross and mountain bike racing.

One of my autumn training grounds was North Beach in Burlington, it was a great place for cyclocross workouts, offering a mix of surfaces, run ups, and spectacular -- almost Wagnerian -- scenery:  I remember training with low clouds scudding by, in a ripping wind, waves pounding on the beach, and glimpses of the Adirondacks across the lake.

I always wondered why no one tried to promote a race at the area and then stopped riding and eventually moved to Waterbury... but this year the venue is being used for the first time for a New England Verge Series race.  I spent a few hours yesterday helping the crew from Pioneer Event Productions set up the course.

I plan on attending the races on Saturday, it will be like old times.  There will be some Euro pros in attendance -- trying to snag some early-season UCI points -- but most of the domestic elite cyclocross group will be racing in Wisconsin due to a scheduling conflict with the USGP.

9.16.2011

17 times up Mt. Royal: Images from the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal

Some images from the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal on 9/11/2011.   

The race course consisted of a 17 laps of a 12 km circuit that included the climb of Mt. Royal on each lap.

Professional cycling miscreant Danilo Di Luca led the break on the climb most of the day... but Danny Pate wound up winning the KOM prize when all was said and done.

Some minutes behind, the Rabobank and Sky teams rode at the front, and upped the pressure as the kilometers went by and the afternoon shadows deepened.

View of Montreal (looking east) from Mount Royal, with the old Olympic Stadium in the center.

More photos from the race:


(Gallery here and  a snippet of video here)

9.13.2011

Who's number 1?

Phillipe Gilbert at the Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal, 9/11/2011
Mr. Phillipe Gilbert, (Philllippay Giil - bear, as they say in French speaking parts of the world) that's who.  Images from the Montreal Grand Prix on 9/11/2011. Gilbert finished 3rd on the day after winning Friday's race in Quebec City.

Here's a video snippet of a couple of laps on the Mount Royal climb that defines this race, by the end things are blowing apart as the pace picks up.



I will post more from this event at some point... I am very slow at editing images and posting things these days.  I'm not sure if it is laziness, post-Irene shell shock or just a general feeling of anomie.

9.01.2011

Come hell or high water, the race will go on

Earlier this week someone in the midwest typed "Green Mountain Stage Race" Irene into google and wound up at this blog. 


So, though it's not the Tour de France (although the 2011 event website proclaims that the GMSR is "the largest Pro/Am road stage race east of the Mississippi!") the GMSR will go on this year.

The flag drops on the 2011 TdF

Racers waiting for the start of the 2010 Dealer.com criterium



Through the years race director Gary Kessler has been forced to get creative with courses... and  this year will be the greatest test yet.  Irene destroyed lots (most?) of Vermont's transportation infrastructure in some areas and finding replacement road courses that will support multiple fields and hundreds of racers at the spur of the moment is ahem... challenging.   There is a chance that Sunday's race will (unexpectedly) come through Waterbury and if so I will be there marshalling.

Bike racing seems quite trivial (even more so than usual) in light of all that has happened.  Most GMSR participants, however, come from outside Vermont and their presence will pump some money in the local economy which is a good thing considering the circumstances.

2010 criterium photos here.