||Race 2 of the 2014 UtCX season got underway at 9:30 on
Saturday October 4. Shortly before race time, brilliant fall sunshine hit
the grass, quickly drying the dew and turning the gooey dirt of the Weber
County Fairgrounds into lightning-fast hard-pack. Beautiful weather and
Dave Benson leads a cyclocross pack in the second (10:30) race,
heading eastbound about 1/4 mile from the start line.
||The course was 1.5 miles in length. There were some fun
challenges, but the theme of the loop was straight-out cranking. Like a
Crit on dirt. There were plenty of grind-it-out straightaways as the race
ran clockwise through multiple laps.
||The race started westbound at the edge of the trees in the
equestrian skills area in the middle of the horse race track. The initial
sprint seemed very short as huge groups of racers fought to get to the
first turn in good position.
Looking east as the Masters 55-plus group gets ready for their race
at 9:30. While it looks like frost, the white stuff is thick dew.
||After the first sprint to the west, the course turned 90
degrees north then 110 back to the east. Already racers were spread out in long
columns of two to three abreast, tire to tire.
On lap one, Joe Benson sprints south with Ben Lomond Peak in the
background. A bit further on, Joe is knocked out of the race with two flat
||Here racers hit the first choke point -- a whoop and drop by
the fire hydrant. More than once, a rider lost control in the drop and
veered into the course marking tape. The poles were uprooted more than
Mike Engberson rolls out of the whoop-and-drop in the Men 35B wave.
||Now a couple of tight turns sent racers back southbound in a
zigzag pattern, ending up eastbound right next to the start-finish zone.
Dan Hutchings tips into a turn as he heads between the whoop and the
||Here was a double barrier, nicely placed just across the
outbound path from the viewing area.
Jeff Kingsford launches himself up and over the first of the two
barriers. Behind him is the judges stand.
||Now it was time to sprint north. In the middle of the fast
grass came a dip and quick left turn leading up to a sharp hump of
dirt. After riding north in grassy weeds along the inside edge of the race track, the course crossed
to the northeast of the horse track.
In lap one of the 11:30 women's race, Colleen Tvorik sprints across
the scant grass in the equestrian skills area.
||Waiting across the track was one semi-tricky off-camber dip-turn, then a couple
of whoops up the slope and back down. Nothing too tricky. A couple of
turns in the trees, and it's off on a straightaway to the south.
Corey Spencer aims the bike back downhill as he hits the apex of an
||At the far south end, racers hit two step-ups. I was
impressed when C rider next to me hit this first barrier head-on, riding
right up and over it. Nice.
Rick Morris attacks the first step-up. About 50 feet further on is
another two-foot step up as the course turns toward the horse racing
||The loop now did a 180 and joined the horse race track for a
northbound sprint before veering left and back to the equestrian
Dodging the mud, John Twitchell heads northbound on the race track.
|| After a quick turn, it was time to head
for the finish area. So much of this loop was high-speed "power at lactate
threshold" riding, it was a totally different experience than last
week's tricky slippery tech-fest.
On the home stretch, Jason Sparks keeps cranking as he approaches
the finish line -- and the log.
||At the east edge of the row of spectator canopies waited the traditional
log. Some bunny-hopping experts successfully jumped the log without
dismounting. About one of three attempters bit the dirt.
From the log, it was a quick 200 feet to the finish line.
Dallin Hatch flies over the log. Still looking energetic after...
how many laps?
||Thanks to Mike for shooting pics of the first race. We've
got 150 pictures for you to browse. Click here to go to Bruce's
And if, for whatever reason, you want a track file of the loop, here
This guy is not the oldest racer on the course. He just feels that