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Cyclocross Race 11, November 30
Fort Buenaventura, Ogden

It was a chilly 27 frost-covered degrees as racers arrived for the first wave at Fort Buenaventura on Saturday. There was no wind, so temperatures became pleasant as the sun penetrated the trees to warm up the race course.

Colleen Tvorik (right) hops the first barrier on lap one of the third-wave race, riding in the Women's Singlespeed category.

This race loop was 1.7 miles of varied terrain. Starting at the Fort, the course ran south to the end of the grass, then came back to the barriers.

After skirting the north edge of the lawn, it ran around the worm fence before it bumped through a dirt dip. Then it was off to the zigzag through slippery leaves heading east.

The course hustled north along the pond, taking a tree-and-leaf detour before heading north to the sidewalk and across the bridge eastbound. After blasting down the east side of the pond, there was a tricky rough dip through the creek.

After resuming the high-speed trip south, the doubletrack took riders to the log hop.

After a long but fast journey north on leaf-covered doubletrack, the course turned back to the lawn for the finish. Or for the next lap.

For the first wave, the race lasted five laps.


The race started on the large lawn area west of the fort itself. Here the course took several meanders before heading off to more-technical riding in the trees.

Mike Engberson makes the tight off-camber turn around the worm fence, with the race announcers' podium and staging area in the background. We're looking north.

The sunshine in the lawn area was welcome, particularly if you were wearing a dark team skinsuit.

Rebecca Sparks practices her mounts and dismounts on the grass north of the fort as Jason supervises. Her Junior Women race is coming up.

After the shakeout sprint to the south end, the course made a tight turn to force riders into single file. Then it came back to two barriers in front of the staging canopies.

Rick Morris hops the barriers in the first wave Masters 55-plus, holding his new tubular wheels high.

The course now made a loop around the north edge of the lawn, with a detour across the lawn and back to get past the worm fence.

Michael Manning cranks along the edge of the grass in the Men 35C race.

The trip southbound was interrupted by a detour through a dip. For the warm-up lap before first wave, the leaves were almost a foot deep. This hid roots, rocks and ruts. For later waves, the riding line had been carved in nicely.

Jason Sparks catches the groove that throws the bike up and around the tree. Jason is riding second wave in Masters 45-plus.

At the south end of the grass, the course became a tricky zigzag through the trees. The leaves turned out to be a bit slippery in those tight turns. Not many riders succeeded in passing here.

Dalllin Hatch, racing in Men B, hits the second of five sharp 180s.

From the zigzag, the loop zoomed north along the west edge of the pond.

With a burst of speed on the straightaway, Rick shakes Bruce off his wheel. Note that the pond is frozen, although barely so.


At the north end of the pond, the course made two not-to-tight 180s to add some distance in leaf litter among the trees.

Corey Spencer in Men 35C follows the riding lane back south after skirting the pond edge.


East of the staging area and the Fort, the course turned north to head for the bridge at the north end of the pond.

Mike Engberson, riding Men 35B, rockets around the teepee timbers with Fort Buenaventura in the background.

On the narrow bridge at the north end of the pond, the right side was taped off for racers crossing the bridge. (The other side was a tight squeeze of two-way traffic as bikes and pedestrians tried to get across without stepping into the racing lane.) From the bridge, riders flew south at high speed along the edge of the pond.

Bruce Argyle (Masters 55-plus) turns from the bridge to head south.

After a little jog on singletrack through the trees, the trail dipped through the creek at the south end of the pond. There was a sharp first dip, then you'd hit the babyhead rocks on the creek bottom before banging through roots coming up the other side. 

Mike Engberson pops his wheel up from the first little dip as he looks toward the leaf-covered rocks on the creek bottom.

The course then flew south on doubletrack, where a log awaited as the trail turned north. About one in five riders bunny-hopped or rolled the log. Most dismounted and jumped it.

Dallin Hatch (Men 35B) rides over the log.

The course then followed doubletrack all the way to the north end. Here rocks and roots were covered by leaf litter, so you just had to keep cranking on faith. At the north end, riders made a sharp turn through the trees to get back onto the lawn to start another lap.

Rachel Sparks (Junior Women) rides toward the finish line during a warm-up lap between races.

More photos (approx 90) from the race team results!

Men 35-plus C
  Michael Manning 13th
  Spencer Corey 19th
Masters 55-plus
  Rick Morris 8th
  Bruce Argyle 10th
Masters 35-plus B
  Michael Engberson 7th
Men B
  Dallin Hatch 9th

Masters 45-plus
  Jason Sparks 6th
Junior Men
  Will Carnell 3rd
Junior Women
  Rebecca Sparks 2nd
  Rachel Sparks 5th
Singlespeed Women
  Colleen Tvorik 2nd

[ Previous CX race Weber November 23 ]  [ Final race at Kaysville December 7 ]   [ 2013 Scrapbook Index Page ]