Jim Miller Park 2014 Race Report

WORDS AND PHOTOS BY Trish Albert, Southeasterncycling.com

Josh. The boss. Of Georgia 'Cross.

Jim Miller Park in Marietta is the oldest continuously raced venue in the Georgia Cross Series. The course is also the site of Atlanta’s Wednesday Night CX Worlds. It is well known to those that have been racing-fast, hilly, and a big run up. The start is in the field with the first obstacle-a quadruple barrier set. The major change from years past was the looping of the far side of the course around the outside of the ball fields because of construction. A few technical turns brought the course to an off camber section and usually rideable ditch–then bit of flatland to the climb that leads to the big run up. Only a few have ever attempted riding it. A screaming downhill brings the course back into the field. Rain in the days leading up to the race left the ground a bit wet. Rain during the first two races turned it into a muddy mess, much to the delight of racers.

The first race of the day was greeted with a light rain. The Single Speeders were not deterred by the mud since they have no gears to get gunked up. They hustled out of the gate towards the barriers. A small group quickly broke away from the pack. Troy Dunton (GS Tenzig) spun home for the win followed by McLean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) and Matthew Reeves (LNC). More than 50 Masters 4/5 braved the weather. Early in the race a break of 5 riders separated from the main field. Connor McNally (L5 Flyers) eventually rode away from Robin Blake (ACC), Jeff Hopkins, Matt Sexton (Reality Bikes), and Corny Delasalas (Sopo). Robin and Jeff faded leaving Matt and Corny. Connor got his second win in as many weeks while Corny out-sprinted Matt for second.

The Elite Masters 35+ race was a rainy showdown between Chris Wyatt (Peachtree Bikes) and Tim Barrett (Toyota Forklifts). They distanced themselves from the pack in the first couple of laps. Riders chased, but none could catch them. They came barreling down the finishing straight like two Indy cars. Chris won the sprint over Tim. Nate Sibly (Atlanta Cycling) was third. The distinguished gentlemen of the Elite Masters 45+ were again led out by Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts) with pairs of Litespeed BMW (Charles Rossignol, Brady Rogers) and Peachtree Bikes (Grayson Tudor, Scott Staubach) teammates and the rest of the strong field in tow. After some first lap jockeying in the twists, turns and mud hole, the rain slicked run-up forced the first separation at the front of the race–Brady, Charles, Grayson and Scott pulling clear of a group including Travis Neumuller (MissionSource) and teammates Alan Burton and Dub (Toyota Forklifts). While these two groups largely held position over the second lap, charging through the field from behind was Tim Gotsick (THL Automotive). As Tim worked his way through the chase group on the third lap, the leaders split. Brady and Grayson pulled away, leaving Scott and Charles to fight it out for the final podium spot. Tim had other plans, however, overtaking both chasers as he continued his charge to the front. On the final lap Brady got a gap on Grayson, but it proved to be too little, too early as Grayson played his cards to perfection. He unleashed the sprint at just the right time to take the win. Unable to catch the leaders, Tim rolled in for a well earned third.

Ali Whittier (HUB Endurance Chattanooga) took the highest step on the podium in the Women’s Cat. 4 race. Holly Harris (Peachtree Bikes) and Ana Baille (L5 Flyers) stood with her. The Cat. 5 racers got their first taste of what cross racing is really like after the rain stopped. Spare bikes were needed by several riders as the thick slop took its toll. Zach Holmes won, Daniel Podratsky (Faster Mustache) got second, and Sean Taylor (ALTX) was third. The Juniors 10-14 was won by Michael Garrison (Mission Source/NCGA). Harrison Nguy (Frazier Cycling) was 2nd, and Leon Wayne (Junior Flyers) took third. Blake Johnson (AYC Junior Dev) took the win in the Juniors 15-18 with Mikey Waine (EPTC) and Blake Wilson (Frazier Cycling) following.

Did you say more or less cowbell?

The sun came out and baked the 1:00 race. Lisa Randall (Super Sport) bypassed the orange sprinkled donut handups and overcame the heat and peanut butter mud to handily win the Women’s 1/2/3 race. Elizabeth Lee (Lifetime Bikes) came in a minute later for second, and Kim Blodgett was third. In the Men’s Cat. 4 Trevor Harding won over Todd Steigarwalt and Christian DiCenso (Prima Tappa).

The Men’s 1-2 race started out fast. A small group broke away on the first two laps. Unfortunately, a rider crashed hard during the previous race on the downhill near the runup. EMS had to be called after it was discovered her injuries were worse than first thought. The 1/2/3 race was suspended after 20 minutes, so that EMS could extract the injured racer. Officials decided to run a 30 minute “Crit-Cross” race using the part of the course in the field. The 1-2 and 3 categories were staged with time gaps between groups as they were when the race was suspended. The sun had dried up most of the field, making racing conditions very fast. In the 1-2 A group of 5-6 racers had a slight gap on the chase group. They stayed together until the end. Crit specialist Frank Travieso (UHC-706 Project) outkicked Nick VanWinkele (Litespeed-BMW) and Arthur Sagat (Round Here Racing). The Men Cat. 3 race was taken by David Vargas (Atlanta Cycling). Matthew Reeves (LNC) grabbed second with Wesley Burrus (Toyota Forklifts) in third.

2014 Boundary Waters Race Report

Photos and words by Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com
Theme of the week: Best “Philisms”

You think Frank's fast? You should see his son!

Smyrna Bicycles and the Toyota Forklift team ordered perfect southern fall weather for the third round of the Georgia Cross Series. It rained heavily on Friday, so riders were unsure what kind of conditions to expect on the course. Boundary Waters Park has a mix of terrain and soil types. Except for two big mud holes on the climb, the rest of the course was in perfect shape. The course was similar to past years with a fast, flat section in the field punctuated by a set of barriers. There was a fast downhill to a sharp left turn in the woods and then a bit more flat. The climb is the biggest obstacle during the race. About half of the racers could ride it; everyone else was forced to run it. Pavement, grass, and move pavement brought riders back to the finish line.
The Singlespeeders had 21 racers sprinting around the course and jumping over things with one gear. A lead group of Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles), Mikey Waine (EPTC), Matthew Reeves (LNC), and David Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) got off the front early in the race. The lead jockeyed back and forth several times. A bit further back in the field, there were races within the race. Josh Frank (ATLX) said that “I scorched a kitten trying to hold Shannon Greenhill’s wheel but ran out of fur to burn before crossing the finish line.”* Shannon dropped Josh and many of the guys. Kyle Schultz (ATLX) also dazzled the crowd on the run up with his very Miley Cyrus like dance moves.  Mikey reached into his suitcase of courage to win the three up sprint. He was followed by Mclean and Matthew. The Master 4/5 Category is proving very popular with nearly 45 entries. Conor McNally (L5 Flyers) had a great start and took the holeshot into the barriers. He never gave up being on the pointy end of the race and led it home for the win. Jeff Richards (HomeSmart) continues to improve each week. He and Tom Hoppe (Bikeman.com) picked their way through the field and battled it out for the last 2 podium spots. Jeff came in second with Tom in third.

Fast older gentlemen

In the 35+ Elite Masters, a pack took off from the starting gun. For the first 3 laps, they settled into a rotation, taking turns pulling. No one was able to get a gap. With 3 to go, Tim Barrett (Toyota Forklifts) made a move and gained 7-8 seconds on the chasers. Nate Sibley (Atlanta Cycling) got a slow start. At one point he was nearly 10 riders back, but he slowly picked his way to the front. Working with Chris Wyatt (Peachtree Bikes), they reeled Tim back in. Going into the final lap, Chris and Nate were side by side. Chris took the sprint for the victory. Nate followed closely behind,  and Tim hung on for third. The 45+ Senior Gentlemen got off to a fast start. Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts) took the early lead followed by Brady Rogers, Charles Rossignol (both Litespeed BMW), Grayson Tudor, Scott Staubach (both Peachtree Bikes), and Alan Burton (Toyota Forklifts). The first trip through the ride/run-up hill split the group with Brady, Charles, and Grayson riding over unscathed and the others forced to dismount. The second lap was one of re-grouping and re-sorting into pairs that would continue for most of the remainder with Brady and Grayson in the lead followed closely by Charles and Scott, who in turn were followed by Alan and Dub. Aiming to hit the run-up in the lead on the final lap, Grayson gained a gap on Brady before entering the woods that he held until the finish for his first 45+ win. Just behind, Charles had separated himself from Scott taking third for his first trip to the 45+ podium.
The Cat. 5 kicked up a lot of dust as they started. When it settled Todd Steigerwalt came out on top with Blake Zorn (Peachtree Bikes) and Zach Holmes rounding out the podium. Eight Juniors 10-14 toed the line. Michael Garrison (NCGA/Mission Source) took the victory. William Sietz (GSMR) was second, and Sean Branyon (Frazier Cycling) was third. In the 15-18, Mikey Waine (EPTC) wasn’t content with just one victory for the day. He soloed to take this older Juniors race, too. Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling) came in for second, and Gabriela Lantinga got third. The Cat. 4 Women’s race was open for anyone to win. First time cyclocross racer Jenna Downey (Peachtree Bikes) took the honors. Julia Bryant (Sorella Cycling) and Ali Whittier (Hub Endurance Chattanooga) were on the other two podium steps.
The Women’s 1/2/3 battle is between Lisa Randall (Super Sport) and Paula Burks (Peachtree Bikes) this year. So far, they have each won a race. With a course that did not favor either rider, it was anyone’s to win. Lisa and Paula dropped everyone early and stayed with each other throughout the race. Paula got Lisa at the line by 1 second. Leigh Hopkins was third. A little further back in the peloton, riders were more concerned with the quality of the hand ups. Lisa Bongiorno said that “the bacon was freshly cooked but a little dry, causing the back end of the field to nearly choke to death.” Others noted the serious lack of donuts. In the Men’s Cat. 4, Connor Ardery (Outspokin Augusta) took the flower. Eric Palacio (L5 Flyers) and Robbin Rahman (The Forge) rounded out the podium.
Last week at Elks Aidmore, Zach Lutz (Grindstone Cycling) won Saturday’s Cat. 4 race and immediately moved up to Cat. 3. This week, he won the Cat. 3 race. David Vargus (Atlanta Cycling) took second, and Joshua Jackson (Outspokin Augusta) was third. With course conditions so fast, the 1/2 Men’s race looked like a road race the first few laps. A large lead group and two smaller chase groups were within eyesight of one another. Half way into the race, slower riders had been shed with only the best up front. The usual suspects were there including Frank Travieso (UHC/706 Project), Nick VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW), and Artur Sagat (Round Here Racing). The fast course favored crit racer Frank, but he could not shed Nick, Artur, and the others. He finally put in the winning move with 2 laps to go. Frank came down that finish straightaway like a Grand Prix Motor Car to win. Nick got second, and Artur hung on for third despite flatting on the last lap.
*No actual felines were harmed in the writing of this race report.

2014 Elks Aidmore Race Report

Words and photos by Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com

Elks Aidmore in Conyers hosted the Georgia Cross opening weekend! After a dry Saturday race on the traditional woodsy Elks course, Sunday’s course was “Shades of Honey Badger.” The infamous muddy ditch was back after a year’s absence. Mother Nature graced Sunday morning with a little bit of drizzle, making roots nice and slick and adding moisture to the already muddy ditch. Other parts of the course that were covered by trees remained dry.

New for 2014 is the Masters 35+ Cat. 4/5 race at 10:00. Along side them are the fun loving Singlespeeders. The SS took of first followed about 30 seconds later by the Masters. Eric Nicoletti (Faster mustache) took off early with a Trevor Harding following behind. Mountain bike wielding Dave Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) tried to make up time by riding the ditch every lap. Those three held their places for the podium. In the Masters 4/5, Chris Isenberg took the win. Matt Harris (C-Town Bikes) was second, and Corny Pogi (Sopo Bikes) was third.

Then Corni showing how it should be done in the Masters 4/5.

Elite Masters were lucky as it started raining hard about 10 minutes before their race. The course quickly turned wet and slick. The Master 35+ looks to be hotly contested this year as “Little Timmy” Barrett (Toyota Forklifts) is finally eligible to race Masters and several riders are moving up to the 45+ age group. Tim didn’t disappoint. He took the lead early and held on for the win on Sunday. Chris Wyatt (Peachtree Bikes) finished behind him after taking Saturday’s win. Nate Sibley (Atlanta Cycling) was third. In the 45+ field, the front of the race stayed compact in the tricky conditions until the second half of the first lap. A trio containing Litespeed/BWM teammates Brady Rogers and Charles Rossignol and Peachtree Bike’s Grayson Tudor began to pull away. Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts) led the chase with Scott Staubach, Men’s 60-64 National Champion Hardwick Gregg (Infinity Cycling), and a couple others in tow. By the third lap the lead trio had become a duo of Brady and Grayson, which stopped when both tumbled end over end into the ditch, taking Grayson out with a mechanical. The following lap Brady lost the lead as a whittled down chase group of Dub and Scott came through with their eyes on the top step. After repeated attacks by Dub, Scott was gapped on the final climb with Dub taking the well-earned win. Brady held on for third.

Ten Cat. 4 women lined up. Trudy Franzel (Alderman) of Savannah captured first on Saturday. Once again she got the holeshot into the tape and didn’t look back. Behind her it was a battle for second place. Brittnay Hopson (Sorella Cycling) took the honors followed by Ana Bailie (L5 Flyers). A little further back in the Cat. 4 pack, Brittnay Mixon (Sorella Cycling) wowed the crowd on every lap by using her gravity racing skills to get air over the ditch.  The Juniors 15-18 saw Blake Johnson (AYC Junior Devo) come out on top followed by Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling) and Keegan Schimmelman. The Under 14 Juniors had a good showing with riders as young as 7! Spectators could be heard across the venue cheering these youngsters on. The top 3 were Sean Branyon (Frazier Cycling), Owen Braunecker (Mission Source/NCGA), and Makena Gates. Trevor Harding won the Cat. 5 race. He was followed by Josh Lothspeigh (Northstar Racing) and Zach Holmes.

The Elite Women have a 30 second headstart on the Cat. 4 Men. The fastest ladies made it known they have no intention of getting caught by any of the men. They put an exclamation mark on that Sunday. Saturday saw Paula Burks (Peachtree Bike) beat Lisa Randall (Super Sport) on a dry, fast course. With parts of the Shades of Honey Badger course wet and muddy, it favored Lisa’s mountain bike skills. She did not disappoint. On the first ditch crossing, Lisa put a few seconds on Paula, but Paula came back until she slid out in a corner. Lisa put a few more seconds on Paula with each dismount and held on for the win. Paula finished second. Elizabeth Lee (Loganville Ford) rounded out the podium. After Saturday’s dramatic win in the Cat. 4 race, Zach Lutz (Grindstone Cycling) could be called an upgrader after immediately moving up to Cat. 3. In his absence, Cat. 4 Men’s race was open. Connor Ardrey (Outspokin’ Augusta) won with Devin Vernick (L5 Flyers) in second and Chris Bulloch in third.

A little birdie said that Frank Trevieso (United Healthcare/706) had been training in secret for the Elks Aidmore cross races and was determined to take the win both days. Even with his victory on Saturday, there was speculation that he couldn’t handle the wetter conditions on Sunday. The 1/2 race got off to a fast start. With 6 laps to go, Frank had a 10 second lead over Nick Van Winkle (Litespeed/BMW). That lead never wavered until just over 1 lap to go. Frank overcooked a corner that had taken out several riders during the day. His bike bucked him off, and he lost a few precious seconds retrieving it. Nick nearly caught him. Frank remounted and put a few seconds between them again. Frank won with Nick in second. Artur Sagat (Round Here Racing) rounded out the podium. After crashing out in the Masters 45+ race, Grayson Tudor (Peachtree Bikes) came back to win the Cat. 3 race. Blake Bridges (Northstar Racing) was 2nd, and Matthew Reeves (LNC) was 3rd.   The 1/2/3 Men kept the crowd entertained on the backside of the course. Rumor has it there were cookie hand ups and even a bacon wrapped donut hand up. Loud music could be heard from the ALTX speakers to get the riders and crowd pumped up.

Trish’s Annual Cyclocross Clinic

Get Your Cyclocross On! Join Trish Albert for a cyclocross clinic to learn what CX is and develop race skills!

When:  Monday, Sept. 8, 2014, 6:15-7:15-ish PM
Where: Jim Miller Park, 2245 Callaway Road, Marietta, GA 30008. Park in the big field across from the Fairground.
Who: Everyone is welcome!
Cost: Free
What To Bring: Cyclocross bike or mountain bike. If you bring a mountain bike, remove your bottle cages and bar ends. Bring water. HELMETS ARE MANDATORY!
Skills to Be Covered: Cyclocross mounts and dismounts, lifting the bike over barriers, race tips and tricks. We’ll do a practice race on the end on one of Georgia’s classic cyclcocross courses.

Notes: All riders must sign a waiver. HELMETS ARE MANADTORY. No helmet, no ride. Trish Albert is not responsible if you get injured. You ride at your own risk and assume all responsibility for yourself and your equipment.

Trish Albert
Southeastern Cycling
http://www.southeasterncycling.com

 

Elks Aidmore – Race Report

WORDS AND PHOTOS: Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com

Salma Hugue (Junior Flyers) does the "Breakfast Club" over the barriers on her way to 2nd place. Also, she is way too young to get that reference.

Elks Aidmore in Conyers hosted the Georgia Cross finale weekend! Fall is the dry season in Georgia, but racers were treated to a week of rain and falling temperatures preceding the series finale. Mud, cold, wet, more mud! Sunday’s weather did not disappoint. Heavy overnight rains turned Saturday’s tacky course into a peanut buttery mess for Sunday’s races. Turns were slick, uphills were slidy, and there was carnage everywhere. Riders came to defend their series leads or simply to try to survive the epic conditions.

In the Masters 35+, Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes) took a solo victory. Daryl Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts) rode into second despite having been sick for a week. Series leader Ian Pruiner (Smyrna Bicycles) was third. The Masters 45+ started with a four-way battle for the holeshot between Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts), Alan Burton (Toyota Forklifts), Greg Schisla (GTC), and Bobby Thrash (Adventure Cycles). As the group slid their way through the downhill after the cabins, Smith remained steady on the front while Burton moved past Schisla only to be pushed aside by a surging Thrash. The four remained together through the lake, pool, and asphalt sections with Smith at the helm and the others continuing their jostling behind. The peanut butter conditions through the rollers and bridges eventually broke up the group with Smith and Burton pulling away from Schisla and Thrash. With rain now falling, Smith continued on with teammate Burton in tow over the next two laps as course conditions deteriorated. On the third and final trip through the rollers and bridges Smith opened a gap on Burton, pulling away through the muck to take victory. Schisla came in third.

In the Juniors 15-18 Keegan Schimmelman was the sole entrant and took the win. The Women’s Cat. 4 race has been hot contest all season between Lisa Bongiorno (Frazier Cycling) and Rhys Mays (ATH CX). The buzz was that Mays would take today’s win because of her running skills on the parts of the course that were not rideable. Bongiorno was having none of that. She took the early lead and never looked back. Mays worked her way from the middle of the pack to take second. Shannon Kimato was third in her first ever cyclocross race. Series Leader Bongiorno and State Champion Mays were upgraded to Cat. 3 on the spot and are looking forward to racing with the Women’s 1/2/3 next year. In the Juniors 10-14, Hunter Murray battled the mud to come out on top. Owen Braunecker (Mission Source Juniors) and Makena Gates rounded out the podium.

Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes)

In the Men’s Cat. 3 Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes) was not too tired from his earlier victory in the Masters 35+ to give Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) a run for his money. Schmid stayed with him until the last lap when Harris put a few seconds between them. James Hundershott (Georgia College) was third. In the Women’s race, mountain biker Lisa Randall (Sorella Cycling) loves the mud and it showed. She flew to the front and never looked back. Randall would put several minutes on the next rider before the end of the race. In the chase pack, Kim Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts) had a bobble in the mud. She was passed by Salma Hugue (Junior Flyers) and Elizabeth Lee (LG Factory). Roadie Hugue becoming known for riding very well in the rain this year. She pushed passed her older competition to take second place. Lee rolled in for third.

With several of the Cat. 4 Men moving up to the 3’s and series leader Scott Morris (Village Volkswagon) sitting out , the field was wide open. Zach Lutz has not had the best mechanical luck this year in his previous races. He had no bike problems today and came away with the win and an upgrade to Cat. 3. Junior racer Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling) was second, and Blake Bridges (Northstar) was third.

The mud did little to separate the top riders in the Men’s Cat. 1/2/3 race the first three laps. Masters World Champion Thomas Turner (Team Jamis), Nicholas VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW), Artur Sagat, Elliot Baring (Cycle Youth) and Frank Trevieso (Smart Stop) stayed together despite the challenging course conditions. On the third lap, Turner and VanWinkle put a small gap on the others. Turner would win by about 15 seconds. VanWinkle was second, and Baring came in third.

Single Speeders love the mud as they have no shifters or derailleurs to get gunked up. One gear, no fuss! SS was the David Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) show. He jumped to the front from the start line. His teammate Dub Smith began the Twinkie hand ups on the second lap. Series Leader Marbut increased the gap as many of his competitors stopped to take a Twinkie or a cupcake after the Twinkies ran out. The biggest cheer of the day came for Salma Hugue (Junior Flyers), the lone women’s SS entrant. She was the last rider off of the course for the 2013 Georgia Cross Season and the one with the biggest smile. Marbut took the win. Michael James (Prima Tapps) was on the second step of the podium with Matthew Reeves (LNC) in third.

 

Congratulations to the Georgia Cross 2013 Series Award Winners!

Single Speed

1. David Marbut (Toyota Forklifts)
2. Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles/BMW)
3. Josh Frank (ATLX)

Juniors 10-14

1. Leon Waine (Junior Flyers)
2. Troy Waine (Junior Flyers)
3. Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling)

Juniors 15-18

1. Thomas Pettit (Frazier Cycling)
2. Kyle Ellis
3. Blake Wilson (Frazier Cycling)

Men CX 4

1. Scott Morris (Village Volkswagen)
2. Aaron Chamberlin (Faster Mustache)
3. Harry Boxler

Women CX 1/2/3

1. Kim Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts)
2. Elizabeth Lee (LG Factory Team p/b Fuji)
3. Lisa Randall (Sorella Cycling)
4. Amy Frank (ATLX)
5. Salma Hugue (Junior Flyers)

Women CX 4

1. Lisa Bongiorno (Frazier Cycling)
2. Rhys May (ATHCX)
3. Lori Balistreri (ATLX)

Men CX 1/2/3

1. Thomas Turner (Team Jamis)
2. Nicholas VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW)
3. Artur Sagat
4. Frank Travieso (Smart Stop)
5. Tim Barrett (EPTC)

Men CX 3

1. Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles/BMW)
2. Calvin Cheung (College Park Bicycles
3. Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes)

Masters 45+

1. Alan Burton (Toyota Forklifts)
2. Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts)
3. Tom Butler (Smyrna Bicycles/BMW)

Masters 35+

1. Ian Prunier (Smyrna Bicycles/BMW)
2. Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes)
3. Daryl Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts)

Peachtree Bikes Buckhead location burned down. Let’s help them out.

(Photo from the Peachtree Bikes Facebook page)

UPDATE from Mike and Elexa Wagaman: We are so thankful for the outpouring of support from the community—especially from the Georgia Cyclocross Family. Peachtree Bikes first priority is that of their employees. Peachtree Bikes is fortunate to have excellent insurance coverage. They are currently working with their insurance company to open a temporary Buckhead store-front. In the meantime, we are asking the friends and supporters of Peachtree Bikes to patronize the store in Sandy Springs. All staff have been relocated there—so you are sure to get extra attention and a world of expertise when shopping for those holiday gifts!

So in lieu of donations, support Peachtree Bikes by visiting the Sandy Springs location!

As most of you know, the Buckhead location of Peachtree Bikes burned down this week. We will be accepting donations for the employees at registration this weekend. Please donate if you can. There is no good time to find yourself without work, but right before the holidays is an especially tough time. There are a lot of Georgia ‘Crossers, so if everyone donates a little bit, we can make a big impact.

For those who will not be attending this weekend’s races, we are also accepting donations via PayPal on the home page. Please note that there are two “donate” buttons. Use the top button for donations to Peachtree Bikes employees.

Jim Miller – Race Report

WORDS AND PHOTOS: Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com

Jim R. Miller Park in Marietta is the longest running venue in the Georgia Cross series. Racers rejoiced as cross-appropriate temperatures finally hit the state. With a low of 27 degrees Fahrenheit and a high of 43, this was cold for Georgia Cross. Riders bundled up as they pre-rode what is the favorite course for many. They were not disappointed! With two sets of barriers, the classic run up, a long fast section, and a set of whoop de doos the course was one of the best yet.

Dave Gearhart (Litespeed-BMW) came into the Masters 35+ race fresh after having taken several weekends off from racing. Ian Prunier (Smyrna Bicycles) took the lead at the first barrier with Dave on his wheel. Dave counterattacked on the back side of the course on the second set of barriers. Dave continued to build his lead in subsequent laps. A group of 6 took up the chase; however, they could not reel him in. Dave held on for the win. Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes) nipped Ian Prunier (Smyrna Bicycles) at the line for second place. In the Masters 45+ Timothy Gotsick got a gap early and held it to the finish. Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts) put in a good chase but could not catch him. Lamar Mauney (Toyotoa Forklifts) was third.

Two Juniors 15-18 battled one another. Thomas Petitt (Frazier Cycling) came out on top followed by Keegan Schimmelman. The Cat. 4 Women’s fields have been consistently big this year. Jim Miller was no exception. Fifteen women were on the line. Emeline Renz (ALTX) took the holeshot into the barriers with everyone else close behind. Soon Cathi Swanson took the lead and never looked back. State Champion Rhys Mays (ATHCX) took second, and Amy Ross was third. Everyone loves watching the Juniors 10-14 race. They were not disappointed today. Leon Waine (Junior Flyers) took a commanding lead early and kept it until the end. Hunter Murray followed in second with Troy Waine (Junior Flyers) in third.

Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) put the hammer down on the first lap and took the win in the Cat. 3 Men’s race. Matthew Reeves (LNC) was second, and Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes) rounded out the podium. In the Women’s Cat. 1/2/3 race, Lisa Randall (Sorella Cycling) was back after several weeks of racing mountain bikes. She took off at the start while Kim Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts) and Elizabeth Lee (LG Factor) formed a chase group with the others far behind. Kim gapped Elizabeth a few times during the first couple of laps, but Elizabeth closed it each time. Finally, with 2 laps to go, Kim attacked hard after the first set of barriers. She got a gap that she was able to hold until the finish to take second over Elizabeth.

A large Cat 4 Men’s field lined up. After they stretched out in the field, the line seemed to go on for a mile. Alex Newton (Faster Mustache) took the holeshot with Ben Braxley and Scott Morris (Village Volkswagon) close behind. For three laps, Ben and Alex took turns out front with Scott hanging on. On the last lap, Alex attacked on the small dirt climb. In a post race interview, he said “I knew with my MTB gearing I wouldn’t have a chance in the sprint, so my plan was to try and exit the woods with a gap. The small dirt climb before the short and steep downhill was my attack spot and rode/ran the run up as hard as I could until I was out of the woods.” Scott had time to adjust his jersey and throw his arms up in victory. Ben out sprinted Scott for second place.

In the Men’s Cat. 1/2/3, the first lap created a group of 6 including Thomas Turner (Team Jamis), Nick VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW), Frank Trevieso (Start Stop), Tim Barrett (EPVA) and two others. The group stayed together for several laps before the first rider came off. The remaining 5 bided their time. With a lap and a half to go, Thomas stopped toying with them and took off. He put 30 seconds on Nick within the last lap of the race. Arthr Sagat followed for second with Nick in third.

Nick VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW) leads Thomas Turner (Jamis) over the barriers at Jim Miller Park in Marietta.

After not winning the Single Speed at Serenbe, Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) was out for revenge. As he did in the Cat. 3 race, he wasted no time leaving everyone else in his dust. Dave Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) was the first rider to give chase, but it proved fruitless. Dave fell back several places. Next up Tim Barrett tried to bring Mclean back. Mclean won with Matthew Reeves in second and Dave in third.

 

Serenbe – Race Report

WORDS AND PHOTOS: Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com

Many Georgia Cross racers went to bed Saturday night with dreams of mud tires, puddles, and pouring rain. Instead, a light foggy mist settled on Serenbe in Chattahoochee Hills for the Georgia Cyclocross State Championships presented by Faster Mustache. It wasn’t epic cross weather, but at least the course was wet. Mud was even spotted on the downhills during the last few races. Fall is Georgia’s dry season, so any precipitation at a cross race is welcome.

The Masters races had their largest fields of the season. In the Masters 35+, Chris Lessing (Round Here Racing) went to the front early and never looked back. Shey Linder (CTown Bikes) and Connell Patterson put in a good chase but could not catch him. He won with Shey in second and Connell in third. The 45+ Masters racing was as hot as it has been all year. With a twisty woods section coming immediately after the 300 meter opening stretch and a state championship on the line, start line nerves were tight. As the group exited the woods the usual suspects were immediately away, with Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes) and Alan Burton (Toyota Forklifts) holding point with a small gap. On the dirt road a trio of Fulton Flyers (Dub Smith, Bobby Thrash and Lamar Mauney) reduced the gap, only to see it stretch again in the second wooded section. As the leaders hit the grassy climb, Michael turned the screws to solidify the gap. Over the next two laps, Dub and Lamar, along with a surging Tom Butler (Smyrna Bikes), continued to press behind the leading duo as the field splintered. Soon a solitary figure was seen behind them-Timothy Gotsick (Team Lupus), who is a cross newbie and the Georgia Elite Men’s TT Champ. By mid-race Timothy caught Dub and Lamar. After a short respite, he left them in his jet wash and joined Alan, who had been dropped as Michael motored out to a solo lead that put him into his first Georgia CX State Championship jersey. Timothy and Alan rolled in for 2nd and 3rd respectively, with Dub 4th. Being the “Fastest of the Most Experienced Masters,” Lamar took 5th and the 55+ State Championship jersey.

Is it me or does it seem like Michael Schmid just gets faster with age?

Three racers in the Juniors 15-18 vied for the State Championship. Kyle Ellis (Frazier Cycling) and Luke Broadwell (Junior Flyers) formed the front duo. Luke took the win with Kyle in second. Blake Wilson (Frazier Cycling) was third. In the Juniors 14 and Under, Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling) won with the Waine twins (Junior Flyers) following. Leon was second, and Troy was third. The Women’s Cat. 4 was a fight for the jersey. On the first lap there was a traffic jam in the woods. Sophia Broadwell (Junior Flyers) went down, and mayhem ensued behind. Emeline Renz (ATLX) and newcomer Amy Ross took advantage of the situation and high-tailed it out of there. Sophia attempted to remount but then very smartly picked up her bike and ran with it out of the woods; she ran by everyone who was riding and didn’t lose any time. Emeline was off the front and had a good lead until the top of the run-up. She was followed by Miriam Vos (Sorella Cycling) and Lori Balistieri (ATLX). After the run-up on the first lap Lisa Bongiorno (Frazier Cycling) and Sophia passed the 4 leaders to take point. On the second lap Rhys May (ATHCX) worked her way to the front. Drawing on her track speed, Sophia passed Rhys on the gravel road going into the third lap; Lisa stuck to Sophia’s wheel. Rhys “The Runner” took the lead back on the run up and kept it to take her first well deserved Cat. 4 win. Series Leader Lisa was second with Sophia in third.

SVEN RHYS! (Hat tip to Hunter Garrison for the clever word play)

The Men’s Cat. 3 race was the Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) show. He went to the front early without nary a glance back at the competition. Amos Harvey (Round Here Racing) and Calvin Cheung (College Park Bicycles) chased hard but could not catch Mclean. Amos hung on for second. Calvin got third. With the State Championship jersey on the line, the big guns came out for the Women’s 1/2/3 race. The women got off to a fast start with the pack staying together coming out of the woods. Lisa Randall (Sorella Cycling) and Paula Burks (Peachtree Bikes) put a small gap on the rest of the field on the first lap. Lisa said that they “rode around in circles with Paula chasing me until 1.5 to go. Paula attacked and got a few second gap thanks to her strong legs and an ungraceful bobble on a remount by me.” Lisa started closing it back down a second at a time, just to make the same mistake again. She lost the 2-3 seconds that she had gained back. In the end, Paula took the win by 5 seconds. Shannon Greenhill (Peachtree Bikes) won third to keep it an all Peachtree Bikes sponsored podium.

A large Men’s Cat. 4 field was looking for a jersey. The beginning was chaos as everyone was looking for the holeshot. The technical woods section slowed everyone in the main pack down, and a group of 10 or so was allowed to escape. Eventually, they would become separated. James Hendershott (Georgia College) finished first and won the jersey. Faster Mustache rounded out the podium with with Paul Harris in second and Alex Newton in third.

With most of the Cat. 3 racers opting to race in their Category this week, in the Battle of the Beards aka the Men’s Cat. 1/2/3, a small field lined up. It’s as if they are reading from a script this year. The Beards–Thomas Turner (Team Jamis) and Nick VanWinkle (Litespeed-BMW)—quickly jumped off the front. Tim Barrett (EPTC) and Artur Sagat valiantly began the chase. Alas, they were never able to rein in the beards. A minor mechanical half way through the race cost Nick several seconds. Thomas took the opportunity to show why he is the Masters World Champion when he kicked it into another gear. He held on for the win. Nick got second, and Artur was third.

Some Single Speeders take the race seriously while some consume a few beverages beforehand. Some wanted to race for the State Champiomship, and others simply wanted to get back to their beverages quickly. Having just raced the Cat. 1/2/3 Tim Barrett (EPTC) took early control of the race along with Matthew Reeves (LNC). Behind them, Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) and Dave Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) took up the chase. After several laps, Matthew dropped out with a mechanical. The race was Tim’s. Mclean put a small gap on Dave, which he could not close. They finished in that order.

Dingo Cross and Swap – Race Report

WORDS AND PHOTOS: Trish Albert/Southeasterncycling.com

While it was not rainy, the first day of Dingo Cross was cool, overcast, and breezy. The race was held at Hayes Chevrolet, Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge in Baldwin, GA. The auto dealership provided the backdrop for a twisty, off camber course. Much of the course weaved through a freshly mowed open field. There was a small spiral and a set of barriers to break things up. The one run up was on the back side of the course and was so steep that only a few could ride it.

You want to learn how to run barriers fast? Watch Daryl Sawyer. Smoooooooooth.

The Masters 35+ saw a small group form in the first 2 laps. Brady Rogers (Litespeed/BMW), Michael Schmid (Reality Bikes), and Daryl Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts) battled it out for the win. Michael, who sometimes races the 45+, showed the two young guys how to really ride on the last lap when he put a small gap on them. Brady was second with Daryl in third.

In the 45+ Masters Tom Butler (Smyrna Bicycles) took the holeshot and held the lead until Greg Casteel (Harper Auto) took the reins leading into the spiral. Greg C. remained on the front with Alan Burton and Dub Smith (Toyota Forklifts) in tow as the three opened a small gap on the field over the next lap and a half. Heading into the third lap Greg C. turned over pacing duties to Alan. Behind Tom, Timothy Gotsick (Lupus Racing Team) and Greg “Farmer G” Schisla (GTC) worked to close the gap to the leading trio. Realizing the threat from behind, Alan increased the pace, eventually leaving everyone else in the dust as he exited the run-up. While Alan continued his solo effort, Timothy reeled in Dub and Greg Casteel, leaving Farmer G and Tom behind. Greg C. was the next to succumb to Timothy’s power. Dub initially held station ahead of Timothy to protect teammate Alan but eventually lost it as Timothy took control in his continued pursuit of the front of the race. Alan held off a quickly closing Timothy for the win with Dub taking a comfortable third.

The Juniors 15-18 had 5 fast entries. Fletcher Lydick (Frazier Cycling) used the race as his warm up for the Pro/1/2/3. He flew around the course and came out for the win. Ellis Kyle got second, and Luke Broadwell (L5 Flyers) was third. Three 10-14 year old Juniors toed the line. Davis Branyon (Frazier Cycling), one of the tallest Juniors at age 14, towers over the 10 year old Waine twins. He rode away for the win on Saturday. Troy Waine (Junior Flyers) put in a good fight for second, staying close to David on the first lap. His brother Leon (Junior Flyers) rounded out the podium. The Cat. 4 Women started out the first lap with the top riders staying together. Eventually Sophia Broadwell (Junior Flyers) won with Lisa Bongiorno (Frazier Cycling) in second. Last year’s Cat. 4 Women’s Series Winner Lori Ballistreri (ATLX) got her first podium of the year with third.

The Men’s Cat. 3 race was fast on the twisty course. Mclean Harris (Smyran Bicycles) took what would be his first of four wins for the weekend. Calvin Cheung (College Park Bicycles) was second. Michael Schmid took third. The Women’s 1/2/3 competition was hot. Recent New Hampshire transplant Karen Tripp (Blue Steel Cyclery) took off at the start. Kim Sawyer (Toyota Forklifts) and Elizabeth Lee (LG Factory) put in a valiant chase. Elizabeth beat Kim to take second.

The Men’s Cat. 4 racers decided to start crashing in the third turn. No one seemed immune, with even a couple crashes reported from the podium finishers. Blake Bridges (Northstar) took the lead within the first half lap. A pack of about 6 riders avoided the more chaotic midfield, but before long, the tight turns separated them. No one seemed to work together, and a nasty sounding ankle sprain took one rider out of contention on the third lap. Alex Newton (Faster Mustache) took the win on a mountain bike by stealthily passing by Blake on the final laps. Twenty seconds later, Ben Braxley and Shane Collins (OCRC) were neck and neck coming to the line with Braxley sliding past by inches to round out the podium.

Hank Beaver and DAT X-NIGHT!

The Men’s Cat. 1/2/3 was the Red Beard show. Thomas Turner (Team Jamis) took control of the race early and decisively. Nick VanWinkle (Litespeed/BMW) tried valiantly to stay with him, but a bobble on one of the early laps cost him several valuable seconds. He was never able to recover them. Unlike the roadie friendly Savannah courses, the Dingo course was lumpy and twisty, favoring those with good bike handling skills-often a mountain biker. Thomas won followed by Nick and Artur Sagat.

The Single Speed race had a large number of entries on Saturday. As they have for the last few weeks, Masters racer Dave Marbut (Toyota Forklifts) and young Mclean Harris (Smyrna Bicycles) traded blows throughout the race. Dave stayed glued to Mclean’s wheel the first two laps. Mclean eventually pulled away for the win with Dave in second. Matthew Reeves (LNC) rounded out the podium.

Dave Marbut chases Mclean Harris. I (Mark Ryan Babcock, The First) believe that there is a Mclean-shaped hole in the 1/2/3 race. How's that for peer pressure?