2016 Rolling Thunder Cyclocross Race - October 22nd

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Rolling Thunder Cyclocross Race November 1st and 2nd

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Back in the day


Being back at home and riding with my dad is bringing back memories. These are photos from my first race in 2004. Phil and myself had just finished our first collegiate B race. There was a big climb in the middle of the race which broke the group up. We hit the climb and the group surged......I had no idea what was going on. Of course both of us and Rob were in the back of the group. So, going into the climb so we really had no chance. Halfway up I was being dropped, Phil came sprinting past me and yelled something. I sprinted to grab his wheel and we both caught back on up and over the climb. I had never pushed myself that hard in anything. I had ridden numerous bike tours, but I had never felt pain like that. We descended and now there was only 15 riders left. Although we were riding tempo I was getting weaker and weaker, I couldn't figure it out. Phil asked how I was doing, and then gave me some Hammer Gel for the first time. I tried it and had an instant boost of energy. With 5k left both of us were looking good. I didn't know how to sprint, or even how the finish would play out. I thought we would drill it with 2k left and people would just drop. We got to the finishing hill and both of us were completely out of place in the back. With 1k, people started launching. We followed all the moves. With 500 meters, we were dropping riders left and right. I put my head down and kept the pushing. A MSU dude came around from the left with 200 meters and it was obvious no one could follow. Phil yelled to me "Go, go, go!" I sprinted with everything I had. No one came by me. I could see MSU cross the line hands raised. I was so tired I couldn't even count the people in front of me. My dad told me I finished 5th across the line. I learned the most important lesson about bike racing. Everyone is hurting it's who can manage their effort, and sprint at the end. That race felt like years. I can still remeber every move, every effort, and what was spoken in the peleton. The team time trial was even better. We were so serious. We had commands and all sorts of stuff. I had read books and watched pro TT's. We were the best Collegiate B TTT team that ever exsisted. Marzullo and I would pull on the uphill, and Rob and Phil would pull on the flats and downhills. We won one TTT that year and it was the highlight by far. Still to this day I have sucked at TT's and TTT's. I think that will always be the highlight of my TT career.

I miss collegiate cycling already.......

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Props

Props to Frank G for winning the MT Cross Championships, and making me look good in this photo (we were hanging on the back)

Props to Tim Johnson. It was a long time in between championships but he made it happen. He never gave up in the last couple laps and it paid off.

Props to US Cyclocross, folks are starting to make paper.

Props to MBRA for hopefully introducing the Best All Around Rider Award.......a step in the right direction. Also big thanks to the MBRA committee for putting in work.

Props to the Cascades for having hella snow right now (I'm headed that way tomorrow!).

Props to Snowbowl for actually having some of the better snow in the state.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A look back: The Giro DIscovery

This past August I had the opportunity of a lifetime. I got to ride my bike 100 miles a day for 21 straight days with full support (caterer), and with 9 of my best friends. This was the doing of Brent Ruby. He wanted to study recovery rates based on extreme fatigue. It seemed like a fantasy as we rode in matching kits, and were waited on by support. I felt like I was on a pro team. We rode from Missoula, MT to Granby, CO and back. There were numerous mountain passes, and flat stretches that I thought would never end.


The ride had ups and downs. Looking back on it, I think it was the best experience of my life. However during the ride I went through all sorts of swings, both with my body and my mind. I remember thinking numerous times that I wanted quit. One thing is for sure; I would not have completed the ride without the 9 other guys. Although it was competitive, no one left me alone when I was really dying. The days that had huge head winds, everyone sticked together. When there was lightning, hail, and rain I was never left alone. It was interesting with all the personality dynamics. I think everyone got pushed to their limits a couple times. By the last couple days of the tour I felt like a cycling caveman. My natural instincs took over. I was using all sorts of cheap road race tactics to stay with people (taking short pulls, faking fatigue, talking to folks, getting behind the biggest dude). Usually by the 70 mile mark I'd snap out of it and drag myself to the end of the day. Most of the guys never snapped out of that.....they'd keep that mentality for the whole day. We had time trials, but the regular days were far more competitive. Part of this was because Adam was cleaning up the TT's, and everyone came to the realization that we couldn't beat him, and the other part was you were by yourself in time trials. On the road if someone attacked, if fueled people's competitive juices.

I was impressed with how strong everyone was. People bonked but no one gave up (well except Elliot that one time by Lander) hahaha, seriously though no one quit.

Adam - I now know why he's called the terminator, he's got the biggest engine of anyone I've ever ridden with. He pulled the group when no one wanted to pull. He won all three jerseys; power, distance, power/weight

Halpin - I was super impressed with Halpin's climbing. He was the only person to consistenly stay with Adam on the climbs. You'd think for such a skinny guy he wouldn't have that big of an engine...............................he does. He would be a great road racer.

Pipo - He's a freak, he didn't train (literally no riding prior), suffered through the first week, but up Teton Pass he was right with the front guys, no to mention he won the green jersey a couple times (most power). I continue to be impressed with his natural ability.

Jeffro - I was the most impressed with Jeff. He hung tough every day, even attacking hard the first week. He's a smart road rider, and has a good sprint. He knows how to hang when he's not feeling well.....great skill

Elliot - This kid can suffer like a dog. In one of the time trials we was at like 95% of his max the whole time. He's and all or nothing guy. He was either dragging me at the end of the day or I was dragging him. Also, he was the most aerodynamic rider, often finishing high in the distance competition.

Matt - I didn't know much about Matt before the study. Now I know he is a freak rider. He won the power to weight competition numerous times, and has a bright future in whatever he does. He can climb well. I wish he would road race...with more tactics he would kill.

Josh - He always waiting for me when I was off the back. I was super impressed with his ability to save energy in the group, and to read winds. He wrecked his elbow halfway through, and still finished with stiches in his arm. It was one of the biggest displays of courage I've ever seen. The study opened my eyes to how good of a rider he is. He had lower power numbers then some of the newer riders but he can win cat 1,2 races???? Skills

Doug - Doug is a horse. He has more wind drag then anyone, and still hung. Like Phil he didn't train a lick and somehow came into form the last week??? I swear the last week, he just didn't get tired. I appreciated Doug hanging back and helping the groupetto. He's another natural talent guy.

It was the best trip of my life and something I'll never forget. I had never reflected on the trip, before this. After writing this little journal entry it makes me realize how cool the trip was. I can't wait to do it again.



Monday, December 17, 2007

Tim Johnson take the victory I take a spill











In a mud/snow fest Tim Johnson came out victorius. He battled with the ageless Steve Tilford until finally taking the W. Wells finished third and Wicks was fourth. Trebon got knocked out by another rider and couldn't finish the race. The ladies race was taken by Katie Compton in commanding fashion. The collegiate race was won by Jamey Driscoll who got his revenge after finishing second in the U23 race.

School is finally over. I'm headed to the Cascades for winter break. Lots of skiing and lots of snow. I'm excited to get some turns in. On Saturday I skied at Discovery. On our fourth run I had a bad accident. We were cruising in this un-tracked stuff when my tips got caught underneath and I immediately face planted. My elbow went through all the powder and hit a rock. I didn't think much of it and kept skiing. Then I started to get dizzy. I had to lay down. I couldn't figure out what was going on. Meryl and Josh suggested I might be bleeding. They were right. I had a huge gash in my left elbow. I went to Philipsburg and got sewed up, but I'll be out of commission for this week. Watch for low snow cover!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Cross Nats coming up quick

Cross Nationals is going to be crazy. The snow is predicted to keep falling. The course is already a mess.

The men's elite race is going to be interesting. Defending champ Trebon is the favorite, but anything can happen in snowy conditions. Wells and Johnson are excellent on technical courses. Johnson hasn't looked as good in his last couple races, but he's always a favorite. Jonathan Page is a threat. He hasn't had his best season, but he's one to watch. Also, J. Powers will be up there. He doesn't like the snow as much, but he's got power up the wazooo. My pick is Todd Wells. He won in 2004 in similar conditions. He's been racing well, and I think he's peaking for this race. He'll edge out Trebon who will finish second. Page will be third, Johnson fourth, and Wicks fifth.

The U23's will be taken by Driscoll. He is unstoppable on the technical stuff. Selander will be second and Summerhill third. In the ladies, Katie will defend her title, but it won't be easy. Gould will be all over her from start to finish. Katrina Nash will get third. The juniors will be taken by Steve Fisher. He's a crosser on the rise, watch out!

And in my favorite category the collegiate's it will be a battle between Fort Lewis and Lee Mcrea. Also, watch out for UV. I'm going with my dog Chris Perrish from Western WA. He had good results at mtb nationals, and is a rider for the future. If Driscoll races for UV he'll win, but I don't know if he's still in school. Watch out for Perrish. He's pictured above...

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Cyclofile's Rhode Island Cross

Wells and Powers exchange victories, and Anthony takes the series!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Lolo Pass




Lolo Pass was nasty today. They got a much needed 4 inches. The coverage is getting better and better.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Props

Props to B. Ferencz for the sick cross movie last Tuesday. Some of those dudes can do crazy stuff. It makes me want to get a fixie and rally. To bad there was three inches of snow when I woke up today. I put up the youtube preview. Check it out if you didn't see the movie.


Props to yesterday's cross race in Rhode Island. It looked like a great event. Cyclofile will put out a video soon. Powers barely got by Todd Wells who was hopping barriers all race long. Check out the photos on Velonews. Also, Jamey Driscoll continues to creep up. He is a consistent rider and a star of the future.

Props to Club Passion's party on Friday. The fellas don't always come through on the parties but Friday's was a gem. Dale, Halp, Pitbull, Huge Daniels, and the gang came up with an excellent array of decorations and beverages. Thanks for the good time.

Props to Lolo Pass. I can't get enough of that place right now. The snow has been crappy, and Ive still been having a blast. Above is what it looks like right now.




Saturday, December 8, 2007

Todd Wells continues to roll

Todd Wells took the victory today at the Verge Series event. He beat out Jesse Anthony and Chris Jones. Looks like he's coming in to form for Nats. Watch out Trebon!

I went bc skiing at Lolo today. Sunny and beautiful, but the coverage isn't quite there. Hopefully it will get better.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Kneller to Jittery Joe's

He's originally from Durango, but he went to school in Bozeman and race on the MSU team for a couple seasons. This past year he race for Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory and travelled the NRC circuit as a neo-pro. The hard work has paid off. Jittery Joe's just announced they signed Ben for the 2008 season. Congratulations Ben! We'll be following your progress.
http://blog.thebeanteam.com/

Rocky Mountain Roubaix

The Roubaix is tentatively scheduled for April 13th. Here's a picture from last year's race (courtesy of Twnya Morgan, www.gascyclingteam.com).

For all of you who have started training or are thinking about training, you've got 130 days till the Roubaix. Of course there are always early season races, like Cherry Pie in Corvallis, and the Mason Lake Series south of Seattle.

I'm excited to race the Roubaix. I've never raced it. I don't like the idea of a flat finish.....but I guess that's what Roubaix's are all about.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Todd Wells

Todd Wells is a sick rider. This is a photo of him with his new GT cross bike, complete with the new SRAM Red group. I got this photo off of his blog http://www.toddwells.com/. Speaking of the Red group, Astana just signed a deal with SRAM for 2008.


Watch out for Todd Wells at Nationals. He's coming into form. In 2005 he suprised Trebon with a powerful ride through the snow.

New Link

Nadia has created a Northern Rockies Racing blog. It will be a great resource for the team and other Montana racers. The link is listed on the right

Monday, December 3, 2007

Trainer Rides

Trainer rides have started. The Missoula Bicycle Works ride will be on Wednesday's at MBW, and NRO's trainer ride will be on Monday at 6:30 at Tamara's place.

Close to Accurate

This weekend's GP's looked like a slop fest. I was close on my predictions. Johnson took day one and Trebon took day two. How about Jamey Driscoll?!??! I thought he would win the U23, but I didn't think he'd be in the top 10 both days. That guy is animal, and a future star of US cross.


Rumor has it Compton was sick, but cross is cross and there aren't any excuses. Hats off to Georgia Gould for the series and the two victories. She's got some power. In the juniors race my man Steve Fisher got a win. I was pumped about that. Well on to nationals for everyone. Should be another showdown.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Did Anyone see Sam Krieg


One of MTcross.com's favorite riders Sam Krieg had a great weekend a couple weeks ago. He placed 6th and 7th at the Jingle Cross weekend. This was a huge result for him. It was a stacked field that saw Todd Wells take both days. Good job Sam!

It's been awhile/This weekend USGP Portland

It's been awhile since my last post. I slipped into a depression after the MT championships. Nothing to think about accept school and work........................

I haven't been riding or anything for that matter. The snow hit the valley, and I've been in shock ever since. We've got a ski trip planned for Saturday, so hopefully that will snap my funk.

Portland GP's are this weekend. Portland and cross is what it's all about. The mud shakes things up. Watch out for Tim Johnson. Trebon says his mudding skills have improved, but Johnson is hard to beat on a technical course. My pick is Johnson and Trebon split wins. Watch out for Todd Wells. I wouldn't be surprised if he took a win. The ladies race is easy to predict. Velonews is saying Katie Compton will struggle in the mud like last year's race. This year is different. She will easily win both days, with Lynn Bessette and Gould battling for second. In the u23 category Jamey Driscoll will win both days. Summerhill and Selander are both strong riders, but I like Driscoll in the mud. In the juniors race I gotta pick Steve Fisher. My hometown Rad Racing team is a dynasty, and Steve is the best junior.

Some good news from earlier this week. Northern Rockies Cycling Team got approved to host the Rocky Mountain Roubaix. I will be the promoter. I'm excited to be part of a long standing Missoula tradition. Next year's road season is going to be nasty. NRO and FVV are both stepping their games up. We've got Josh Tack, and Bob Presta next season. While FVV should upgrade a bunch of guys to the 1,2,3 race, and also contend with Seeley and Kier. Defending champs GAS will of course be the team to beat. With Curry and Lussier having good cross seasons, watch out. Also, Thomas and strongman Brad Morgan in the crits. Montana Velo came on strong last year. Frank's dominant cross performances this year make MV even scarier. Scott and Kiefer are killers. It will be a competitive road season for sure.
Stay tuned........

Monday, November 19, 2007

Championships Video and Article

Ronnie Attaway made a sweet cross video of yesterday's race. Check out Dale riding up the sand.

Also, the Helena paper had a good article, http://helenair.com/articles/2007/11/19/helena_top/a01111907_01.txt

Frank GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG

Frank took it to the house yesterday!!! He is the Montana State Champ. Other Champions crowned were Chance Cooke, Murphy Woodhouse, and Lisa Curry. What a great day of racing. The course was great and the racing was undpredictable and exciting.

The masters race was competitive. With Chance racing it didn't look like Steve would be able to run away with it. They formed a nice group at the front that also had John Fiore and a couple other riders. The Flathead guys worked together with Chance eventually riding away for the title. Steve won the spring for second. Props to B Ruby for racing!

The women's race was filled with drama. First off it was a great field. It looked like 10 or so riders, event without the Gaskill sisters. Early on Danyel Longmire took the lead and looked tough. Lisa fell and Danyel squirted to a 10 second lead. Danyel slipped in a tricky corner and banged herself up really bad. She could not finish. Lisa took the reins from there. Michelle raced consistent, like she has all year and was up there for second place.

In a suprising men's B, Murphy took the championship!!! He came out of nowhere to bring home the title. He battled all race, hanging with the leaders.

The men's A was won by Frank G. Him and John early on showed they were the one's to beat. It was a two man battle all race long. Frank took it in the end. John had a great race for second, and Bill Martin rounded out the top 3. Great racing by Bill, to get a Missoulian on the podium.

More race reports and photos coming soon......

John Seiber Men's B, Master, Women photos, http://www.jpsphotos.net/gallery/displaythumbs.cfm?e=71&c=1&m=3

J.W. Newton Missoula Race photos, WOW
http://picasaweb.google.com/montanacyclocross/JWNewtonMissoulaCrossPhotos

Friday, November 16, 2007

State Championships/Katie Compton

The weather is still calling for a rain/snow mix on Sunday. With the polls closing Phil and John end in a dead tie with 9 votes each. The people's champion's have been decided. Who will take the prize??? I hope everyone in town is planning on watching. Mike Beltz is doing a great job promoting the race.

Katie Compton won the first ever World Cup by an American. She beat the competition by 45 seconds, and grabbed the most important victory in US Cross history. Check out cyclingnews or velonews for more information.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

State Championships Preview - Master Men

The master's men has been a fun category to follow this year. Most of the top racers, are still in great form and have high level cyclocross skills. John W has dominated the series standings, but Steve M of late has really been winning big. Other good showings this season; John Fiore raced consistently all year, Tom Sullivan had a couple good races, and John Coulthard was always up there. Props to Byron from Great Divide as well as David Schoening from the Ridley Team, they had great years as well.

With the championship up for grasp, it could be a heated masters race. Here's my picks:

1st Place: Steve Mueller
Steve is a great cyclocross racer. He is consistent from the start of the race to the finish. Since this race is with the B's, look for Steve to win the whole 11am race. He's got great power, and he knows what he's doing on the cross bike. I don't see anyone beating him.

2nd Place: John Wehyrich
The series leader has yet to take down Steve when he's on his game. John had another great year taking down the overall title. If Steven faulters, look for John to capitalize.

3rd Place: John Fiore
John is another great crosser. He raced on the Fort courses all season, and shouldn't have much problem with the championship course. If Beltz makes it technical look for John F to be right up with John W. He's a skilled rider.

4th Place: Tom Sullivan
Tom is the masters phenom this year. He had a couple spectacular performances in the Missoula series, and has placed consistent in the Montana series. If Tom has a good start, don't be surprised to see him with the front group. He's a powerhouse.

5th Place: Walt Chauner
Walt has come on strong in the last couple races. He's a great road racer, and now is into the cross. If he's there this weekend expect to see him up with the leaders.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

State Championship Update

The weather for Sunday is calling for a high of 40 degrees, with 60% chance or rain/snow. Leading up to Sunday snow is in the forcast for almost every day. It will be a cold and slick race!

John Curry and Phil Grove are leading the people's champ pole. I think those are two good picks. Phil seems to be getting a little late season motivation. Although he did attend tri swim practice last night! Sorry Phil, I had to give you crap for that.

State Championships Preview - Men B

Ahhhhh, the men's B. The category that shows us the future of cross in Montana. It's hard to predict the men's B. There's always the possibility of ringer coming in and taking the glory. We saw this happen with Chris Connelly at Rolling Thunder, and Phil Hess at the Helena race last weekend. The Five Valley guys have had a strong showing in the men's B, essentially dominating the with Kyle, Erik, Howard and Ely all in the top 5. Since the championships is at the Fort, it gives these guys an added hometown advantage.

1st Place: Kyle Shannon
You can't not pick him to win. He won both the Missoula and Montana series, and is by far the most consistent rider in the B's. He's got great cross skills, and is a rider for the future. He knows the fort well and should be able to take advantage of certain sections.

2nd Place: Ben Raffato
Raffato breaks up the Five Valley podium. He's only raced once in his life and that was at Woodland Park. He's got a big engine for his xc skiing days, and can push himself past his limits. I've heard he's racing this weekend.

3rd Place: Erik Digby
Erik has been a great racer all season. He's a big part of the FVV domination of this category. He gets better as the race goes on. Watch him at the end of the race to start picking people off. Erik is another rider for the future.

4th Place: Howard Williams
Another consistent performer, Howard has been right there all season. He won the Lubrecht race in Missoula. If the tempo is to his liking watch for Howard to be in the hunt for the victory.

5th Place: Murphy Woodhouse
Murphy is always good for a top 5. He's had a great season in the Missoula series. Murphy is another one of those late charge guys. Watch out for him towards the end of the race.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

State Championships Preview - Women

The women's racing has been competitive this year with climax coming at Rolling Thunder. All three big name ladies crossers raced at Thunder (Michelle, Heidi, and Lisa). With new riders getting in the sport like Anna Clark, Kelly Grove, Sophia Kircos and Megan Gaskill the women's field should gain some more competition next season. Michelle has the lockdown on the Montana series, but who will win on Sunday? Lisa raced tough in Helena, and has proven she is nearly invincible when she's on her game. The Gaskill sisters will also be a threat.

The Montana women's cross scene has a bright future. We need to continue to introduce female athletes to the sport.

1st Place: Lisa Curry
I made the mistake of not picking her for Rolling Thunder. I won't do that again! Boy did she prove me wrong. If she hadn't done any other cross races this year but Thunder, I still would have picked her 1st place for the championships based on that result. Her barriers are a notch above the rest of the ladies. Her race preparation and mental focus can only be matched by Michelle. I think Lisa will take it out hard, and will be tough for any women to grab her wheel.

2nd Place: Michelle Richardson
Michelle has been racing well all season. I first saw her race in Butte and was very impressed. However, she's seemed to have gotten better every race. She had a good 3rd place at Thunder, and a nice win at Herron Park. Michelle deserves to be on the podium. If there is a jam up at the start I think Michelle can hang with Lisa for awhile.

3rd Place: Heidi Gaskill
HG is an incredible talent. In her first full cross season she went undefeated in the Missoula series. She's got the biggest engine in Montana. Her technical skills, and pure power make her a threat in any kind of biking event. I have yet to confirm her racing status for this weekend, but if she's there I think she is the only women who could take down Lisa. She had a great win at Woodland Park.

4th Place: Danyel Longmire
Danyel had a good Missoula series finishing 2nd in the last two races. She is always good for a top placing. Her mental toughness, keeps in her in any race she starts. If any of the top women are having an off day don't be surprised to see Danyel creep into the top 3.

5th Place: Megan Gaskill
Like her sister Megan had a great cross season. The power is there. If her technical skills caught up with her power she would be a huge threat. Watch out for Megan in the future, she's a tremendous athlete. For now she settles for a top 5, and looks forward to spring triathlon training.

Ladies great job this season. Good luck on Sunday.

Monday, November 12, 2007

State Championships Preview - Men A

Men's A cross is interesting in Montana. There's no dominant force. John Curry was the killer early on winning Butte, and Missoula, but mechanicals have kept him out of the hunt consistently. Both Doug and Clint seem to have the power, but we've only seen them in a handleful of races. Frank and Bill are consistent racers, put between the two of them we've only seen one victory. It seems like they were all just one piece away from dominating this year's series. It's good to see strong riders get into the cross scene. This year Ben Parsons, and Bob Presta jumped right in and raced well. With these guys and the addition of some strong B's, the men's A field should be stronger for next year.

The Fort Missoula course's are a different breed. No matter how hard we try the course's always end up being flat and fast. I think using the Fort will change the outcome of the race. It will favor powerful riders. Since the Missoula series was held there, the local riders do have a bit of an advantage. Here are my predictions for the race. Feel free to leave comments - with your predictions???

1st Place: Doug "The Missing Link" Shryock
He's the only one who's beaten all the favorites atleast once this season. Now, we could argue that in some of those races folks had mechanicals, but as we know mechanicals are a part of cross. Doug takes the victory, by using Fort Missoula knowledge, and man strength. He confirms his unreal cyclocross potential. He's the only one who can race in a group and on his own. He's patient in a group, but can get into the chamber if he needs to grab a wheel or go on the attack.

2nd Place: John Curry
He's had a great season in all aspects of cycling. He deserves a podium place. The only time John has not been in the hunt for the victory was because of mechanicals. He's strong enough, and has the confidence. I'm sure most folks have noticed this but he's been riding a steel Bianchi Volpe (touring bike), I used to rock this bike - it's super heavy! Were talking like 30lbs! I think there will be a selection at the front which John will easily make. I also think he will be one of the people pushing the tempo trying to shed riders and get on his own.

3rd Place: Frank Gonzalez
Frank's a great cross racer. He's hot after his first win at Helena, and has the speed to be in the hunt at the championship. Like John, Frank will make the selection. I like Frank's cross skills, and race knowledge, but JC and Doug have a little more power and will slip past in the closing laps of the race. Frank is a killer rider on his own, if he gets by himself watch out. If there is a pile up, Frank will squirt away.

4th Place: Phil Grove
He's got two wins at the Fort this season. He hasn't been racing much recently, but Grove is always good for a result. It's super hard not to pick him considering his natural talent, and what he brings to the table. Like the other guys, Phil will make the first selection. Both him and Doug work well together, and that will benefit both of them. Watch out for the Club Passion Alliance, as Phil will work for Doug and vice versa if one is not feeling well. Grove wants to end his season on a high.

5th Place: Clint Muhlfeld
It's really hard to not pick Clint. He's got like a 50% win rate when he finishs races. I don't know if he's going to show or not, but I hope he does. He really makes the race interesting. The race dynamics change without him. Without Clint the race will start slower, and people like Phil, Doug, and Bill Martin will be able to get their feet underneath them. Doug and Phil would much rather be in a group and use some road tactics, then be in the chamber following Clint's wheel for the first 20 minutes. If Clint is there the hole shot will become crucial to who can hang on. If you don't have a good start your out.

If the race is slower at first, which I think it might be look for Bill Martin, Scotty Herzig, Toby M, and Parsons to be up there. If Bill is near the front early on then that is a good sign for him. I wouldn't be suprised to seem him in the top 3 if that's the case. I like Scotty in this race for two reasons. One he's good on road biker friendly courses with some flats, and two he's an excellent teamate, and will be very motivated to make any selection to help Frank. Also, Scott has a good start so even if someone goes bannanas at the start, theres a chance Scott can hang for awhile. Toby has the local knowledge, and the skills to place in the top 5. I don't know if he's racing or not, but if he is and makes the selection......watch out, he's one of the best tactical cross racers I've ever seen. At the start the selection will be Doug, John, Frank, Phil, Clint, Scott, Bill, Toby, Ben, and Alex L. A couple guys will get mechanicals, but that's to hard to predict :). Either John, or Clint will push the tempo and shed the first couple riders. Scott, Alex, Ben, and Toby will be the first to go after being in position to help their teamates. The selection of Doug, John, Clint, Frank, Phil and Bill will last unless Clint races(also John C won't like this size). He will not like being in a group this size and continue to attack. If that's the case I think only Doug, John, and Frank have the fitness to stay with him. Eventually it will come down to Doug pulling his famous Fort Missoula block on the last lap, and putting it down for the victory.

Keep in mind this all how I'm picturing it, something completely different is most likely going to happen. Wouldn't it be sweet to have a group at the front throwing tactics and crap!!!! We'll see!!!!

Friday, November 9, 2007

State Championship News

The much anticipated State Championship has posted some information. The race will be Sunday November 18th at Fort Missoula. Like the Woodland Park race, there will be a seperate men's A race. The promoter is Mike Beltz from the Northern Rockies team. Myself, and other NRO folks will be helping Mike with all the usuals. The Fort courses are always relatively flat. I know Mike will be putting in a big run-up, on the southside.......other then that is should be flat and twisty.

In preparation for the biggest race of the season I will be posting a preview of each category, Monday (menA), Tuesday (women), Wednesday (menB), Thursday (master). Also, the polls will continue right up to the start. With only eleven votes so far, Frank G has taken the early lead with 3 votes. Frank might be benefitting from all of montanacyclocross.com's publicity. Hahaahahaha, I don't think so, Frank's just a chill dude.

Cross this Weekend

This Sunday there is a cross race just north of Cour'd Alene. It's part of the Inland Northwest Cross Series, that Emde Sports puts on:

http://www.emdesports.com/Race_Flyers/2007_cyclocross.html

I looked at the recent results, and noticed that Spokane's finest has been showing up the the majority of this series. Both local pros, Kevin Bradford-Parrish and Erik Holden have swapped victories in the series. Also, some of the Whitman College racers have been showing.

It should be entertaining. I will provide a full report, including comparisons between Inland Northwest Cross and Montana Cross.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

State Championship Poll

I posted the State Championship poll early so everyone would have a chance to vote. Let's see who the people's champ is?????

Unrelated to cross, today's video featuree is Paolo Bettini. Check out the hightlights from Giro Lombardia (second from the left). The guy is a madman. He's attacking, he's descending it's flipping awesome!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Rider Profile: Brendan Halpin


Brendan Halpin is one of Missoula's finest athletes. This past season he really stepped his game up. I thought I'd swing a couple questions Brendan's way and see how he is handling his new successes. He grew up in Whitefish, MT with Doug Dale, Chris Connelly, and Ben Raffato......all crazy cross racers some of you might know. He studied at UM and earned his degree in history. While in college he raced for the UM Triathlon Team. He started to make a name for himself by quality results at nationals and in the Grizzly. His senior year he was the captain and the fastest guy on the team. This past year was is breakout season. He finished Ironman Cour'd Alene and Ironman Hawaii, winning his age group in Cour'd Alene. He also posted to notch results at wildflower, Hellgate Duathlon (winner), and Giro Discovery. His pro card should soon follow....

MC: What's your favorite TT bike?
Halp: The Orbea Ordu

MC: What are you training for next season?
Halp: Ironman 70.3, Worlds!!!!

MC: What's your favorite triathlon course?
Halp: Wildflower

MC: Are you pumped with how last season went?
Halp: Hell yeah!

MC: Who's your favorite Montana Crosser?
Halp: Frank "the tank" Gonzalez

MC: Who's your favorite Pro Crosser?
Halp: Barry Wicks
We congratulate Brendan on a great season and wish him luck next year. Montanacyclocross.com will keep track of all Brendan's racing.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Centennial Cross (Helena) - Frank G is hella fast




Yesterday was a great day of racing in the capitol city of Helena. Byron and the Great Divide Cycling Team put on a good event. I appreciated the $15 entry. It would be nice to make that the standard rate. The course was fast. Lots of straightaways and hard surfaces. Also, it was unseasonably warm.


The men's race started off by everyone stringing out into a long line. There was a big headwind, and everyone was looking for a wheel. Leading the group out was Frank, Jamul, Scott Herzig, and John C. As we hit the more technical sections I looked ahead and saw Frank just flying! Soon, I came up on John C, who unfortunately had an early mechanical. On the second lap Bill Martin powered by me in the headwind section, and resumed his usual business of passing everyone. Soon, I was in the back. I tried to ride with Alex L for awhile, but I couldn't hang on. In the end Frank rode to a well deserved victory, his first in the Montana Cup. Second was Scott, who had a great race (it must have been the Kiss socks). Third was Bill Martin who continues his amazing cross season. Rounding out the podium was Brad Morgan and John Curry. Brad Morgan seems to be getting better every week. He has all the power in the world, maybe it was just a matter of getting used to the cross bike. The Montana Cup series has gotten even tighter with Frank G and Bill Martin in a tie for first with 104 each. Curry is still in the hunt with 96. The winner will come from those three. I noticed on the results that Frank and Bill's racing age is both over 40. I don't know if those are right or not, but if they are.....these dudes need to go to nationals!!! Montana Cross would kill the 40-45 category. I wish montancyclocross.com had some cash, because I would send them! You guys are killing it.


The women's race was a showdown between series leader Michelle, and Lisa Curry. Lisa came out on top with a nice victory. That puts her 24 points behind Michelle in the Montana Cup series. Michelle just needs to show up in Missoula, to claim her crown. I'm looking forward to the ladies match-up of Gaskill (1 win), Lisa (3 wins), and Michelle (1 win). Who will be the state champ???


The men's B was won by Phil Hess. He is tough to beat. All that single speeding has made him tough to beat on the cross bike. Kyle Shannon continued his great season finishing second and widening his lead in the Montana Cup. Congrats to Kyle on the Series Victory, he deserves it. Craig Pozega rounded out the top 3 for a Great Divide 1 and 3.


Master's men was again dominated by Steve Mueller. I tried to ride with Steve for a little bit. The guy is just a great rider. Technically sound, and lots of power. Steve is to far behind John W. for the series title, but he'll be gunning for the state championship in Missoula. Speaking of John he continued his consistent racing with 2nd, 3rd was Walt Chauner, and 4th was David Schoening my Ridley teammate.


Here's a run down of victories leading up to the State Championship:


Butte: Curry

Bozeman: Sam Krieg

Bozeman: Sam Krieg

Missoula: Muhlfeld

Missoula: Curry

Whitefish: Doug Dale

Kalispell: Doug Dale

Helena: Frank G

Missoua State Championship: ?????


Best Ride: Frank Gonzalez/Lisa Curry

Most Aggressive: Brad Morgan

Hanging Tough: John Curry








Friday, November 2, 2007

Montana Cross Update, and Comments

I haven't been in the cross scene long, but this is the most hype I've seen about Montana Cross. All this hype (especially in Missoula), will come to a climax November 18th in Zoo-Town. This year's state championships should be a wild ride. Not only is there a week of rest between Helena and the championship, but more crossers have stayed in shape longer this year.


The men's overall title is a three-way race between Missoula's Bill Martin, John Curry, and Frank Gonzalez. With two races left only 5 points seperate the three. This year to win the title you had to show up to the majority of the races........and race well, if you weren't in the top 5 consistently you can throw your chances out the window. The women's series is being led by Michelle Richardson, who has a 28 point lead over Lisa Curry. Lisa will need some good results, and places ahead of Michelle in order to take the title. The men's B is all but decided. Kyle Shannon has a commanding 45 point lead over Erik Digby. Kudos to Five Valley who have the top 4 on lock down with Kyle, Erik, Howard, and Ely. All those Thursday practice sessions have really paid off. That's what we need..........bringing people through the ranks. Kyle and Erik will be great additions to the 1,2,3 field next year. The masters is being dominated by John Wehyrich. Fiore is in 2nd but has a long way to go.

I compare the Montana Cross Series and State Championship to the World Championship and ProTour Titles in pro road racing. While the ProTour Title is a tremendous honor and shows both consistency and hard work, the World Championship is special......everyone wants to wear that rainbow jersey. This year I think it would be very prestigious to say you were the Montana State Champ. Who knows, maybe we can organize a jersey??? A montana flag jersey or something????

The State Championship could go to anyone in the men's A. Curry has raced the most consistent, but Doug has looked impressive in his two wins and a second. You can never count out Clint, we learned that at this year's Rolling Thunder. Although they don't have Montana wins yet, Frank, Phil, Bill, and Ben Parsons are all possible victors. Since the race is in Missoula, you never know who might show up to spoil the party. Maybe Jamul will make another appearance???? Perhaps Sam Krieg might come out and ruin the Montana Party. One thing is for sure it will be a great race, with lots of respect and props going to the winner.

I will post my official pre-race guide on Monday November 12th.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Halloween Cross

Last night's Halloween Cross race was amazing. This race has to be continued for years to come. John Wehyrich organized a great course. We all rode a nuetral lap, and then raced 4 total laps. There was a huge leaf pit, stair climb, and the "mound". Everyone I talked to had a blast. For more photos click on this link, http://jpsphotos.net/gallery/displaythumbs.cfm?e=65&c=1&m=3, John Seiber took some great photos.

The races started off at a blistering pace as the baseball player and wigged rider took the early lead. Soon the hunter caught up and took the lead. The business man, and ghost were still in the hunt. The hunter on his full suspension mountain bike could easily rider over every obstacle, giving him an advantage. The race came down to a sprint between the wigged rider and the hunter. The wigged rider took it in the end, with the businessman finishing third.

I was chilling in the leaf pile, after a lap. Myself, the goat, three blind mice, and the prisoner drank some nice Pabstttt in the leave pile until the last lap. The 1 and half bike crew was amazing, the agility to ride that thing while drinking Pabstttttt and smoking cigars was impressive. The hockey player was also impressive. Riding an old ass bike, he just kept motoring away in full pads. The Kiss rider had a good ride, especially through the tires. And don't forget the Hulk!! I love America!!

I've got to give a shoutout to the best costume of the night......even though he didn't race....the Optimus Prime costume from Transformers by far takes the cake.

Best Ride with Bulky Costume: The Hunter (w/BOB Trailer)
Best Technical Ride: Chainsaw hand (riding with one hand for 4 laps!)
Best Costume: Ghosts on 1.5 bike
Most Patriotism: Hulk Hogan
Best Fall: Ghost with trenchcoat into the leave pile head first
Most Heart: Hockey Player

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Rider Profile: Sam Krieg






Sam Krieg is a crosser out of Pocatello, ID. Montana folks know Sam from his recent trip to the Bozeman cross races. He easily won both races that weekend and made me wonder more about his racing palmares. I had forgotten about how I wanted to look him up until recently. I was looking at the results of the first GP last weekend in Louisville and saw that Sam finished 42 on day 1 and 43 on day 2. Knowing how hard those races are I was pleasantly surprised with his results. Besides Kris Holden and Kevin Bradford Parrish (both out of the Spokane area) we don't have anyone representing the Idaho/Montana cross scene. I was happy to see Sam travel all the way out there and put in some good results. Just for reference there are 85 starters in the men's elite. The GP's are for the US's elite crossers. Look at Molly Cameron and Erik Tonkin. These guys have dominated Portland's Cross Crusade and are finishing in the 20's. Here is a little quote from Sam on this weekend's GP's, "The first few laps were just carnage. I have raced a few UCI races and am in AWE of the guys that can turn super fast laps. Our lap times were fast enough to podium in the 35+ race but barely enough to not get lapped in the elite."


Sam is also involved with http://www.kriegcycling.com/, which sells sweet bicycle bags. Check it out if you have time. He's hosting a race in Pocatello on Novemeber 17th. He's a great guy and I wish him all the luck with rest of his season. Look for him in the results on cyclingnews.com or cyclocrossworld.com. http://www.montanacyclocross.com/ well be keeping tabs on Sam for the rest of the year. Sam's blog is http://samkrieginpocatello.blogspot.com/.

Sick Cross Videos

I posted some nasty cross footage. The one on the far left with the motorcycle in the picture is amazing. Watch it if you have time.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

What are the Pro's up to???

This past weekend was the first stop for the US Grand Prix Series. Over the past couple seasons the Kona duo of Wicks and Trebon have dominated the series. However, last weekend was not meant to be for the twin towers. Cyclocrossworld.com had put together a strong team with Jeremy Powers, Tim Johnson, and Lynn Bessette. They took advantage of wounded Trebon and tag teamed the crap out of him. Powers eventually went on for the victory. He has three UCI wins this year. Johnson rode away from Trebon and finished second. On Sunday, it came down to Johnson and Trebon. This time it was Johnson's turn, as he distanced the Kona rider on almost all the technical sections of the course. In the women's races number one ranked rider in the world Katie Compton won both days fairly easily. Georgia Gould got within 30 seconds on Sunday's race, but that was as close as anyone got. Lynn Bessette was under the weather and did not have a good weekend.

Some other peformances of note. Danny Summerhill won both U23 races, and continues to show why he is the future of the sport. Chris Jones from the Nerac squad is the surprise of the year. He's getting top 5's and top 10's consistently in all the UCI races this year. The Portland based River City Cycles ladies team had two nice top 10's with Wendy Williams and Sue Butler. Also, Sam Krieg, who won both Bozeman cross races this season placed in the top 40 I believe. So, that's a good indication of where Montana's elite stand.

Halloween Cross Race

Tomorrow at 5:30 is the Halloween Cross Race at Fort Missoula. It you wear a costume you race for free. This is cannot miss event!!!!!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Woodland Park and Herron Park Cross Photos

Natasha and Bill Westphal have posted photos of this weekend's races. I put a select few below. Here's a link to the full album, http://picasaweb.google.com/natashawestphal

Herron Park Cross, Doug makes it two in a row

Flathead Cycling and Steve Mueller put on a great race on Sunday. The course was technical and long.
The men's A had 10 or so starters and kicked off quick with Matt Butterfield grabbing the hole shot. As the field came together a little more at the front Doug rode away solo and took his second victory of the weekend. Bill Martin was also impressive finishing second, passing everyone but Doug. Rounding out the top 3 was Matt Butterfield, who took a great holeshot and was able to hold on for third. Ben Parsons was 4th and Eric Greenburg was 5th. I had a bad race, finishing in last place. Not all of us can get crunk the night before and race. I rode as hard as I could but the dehyradtion and sore legs, had me watching Brad Morgan and Chance Cooke easily ride away. Doug is looking awful tough, maybe it was the homecoming factor??? I think it was the beer. The more beer he drinks the better he rides. I'm excited to watch John Curry and Doug race. Hopefully, in Helena or maybe at the State Championship in Missoula. Bill Martin had a great weekend with a 2nd and a 3rd. He seems to be getting better each week.

The men's B was won by a guy from the Spokane Rocket Velo team, Micheal Sirrot. He outlasted the field by surviving crashses and technical terrain. Kyle Shannon had a great ride finishing 2nd. I thought we might have been saving something on the last lap, but he couldn't get around the 1st place rider. Chris Connelly took 3rd, riding with determination through crashes. In the early going Chris fell over the barriers taking out Erik Digby, who was unable to contine due to mechanicals.

The masters race was easily won by Steve Mueller who was also the race's promoter. Steve is an animal on the cross bike. He passed me with ease halfway through the race. Steve was consistent all day. 2nd place was Walt Chauner who passed John W. late. John was 3rd but suffered mechanicals on the last couple laps to force him out contention

The women's race was won by Michelle Richardson. I believe it was her first victory of the year. It was well deserved. She has raced consistently all year long and deserved to get the W. She took the lead and never looked back. Ady Wygman was second and Lynetter Van Aken was third.

Best Ride: Doug Shryock, Michelle Richardson
Most Aggressive: Bill Martin
Hanging Tough (crashes/mechanicals): Phil Grove

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Woodland Cross, Montana #6, Shryock Wins!

Doug finally got his Montana victory. Winning out of three man group comprised of Phil and Bill Martin, Doug powered away to claim his 4th cross victory this year. Both Phil and Bill raced well to hang in the lead pack for most of the race. I crash by Phil, opened the door for Doug to put an effort in and not look back down the descent. Rounding out the top five was Ben Parsons and Frank Gonzalez. Frank had an earlier mechanical??, that took him out early. Ben showed that he's learning the cross game quickly and hammered to 4th place. The course was relatively straight and fast besides at nasty climb, and run up on the backside. I was somewhere towards the tail end of the group, but I felt the best I have all year. I dueled with Brad Morgan for a couple laps, but he was too strong in the end. It was nice to have good spectators. Doug is really coming into form. Phil seems to have recovered from his mid-season slump. I expect to see Frank back up there tomorrow.

In the men's B Chris Connelly took home this win. Despite crashing 4 times, Chris hung on for the win. In second, making his cross debut was Ben Raffato. Ben was impressive in 2nd place hanging with lead pack. I don't know how took 3rd. It might have been Erik Digby, but I think he got 4th.

The men's masters was dominated by Steve Mueller from the Flathead. He pulled away from the men's B and masters to take a nice victory. 2nd was John W., and third was John Fiore.

The women's race was won by Missoullian Heidi Gaskill. Heidi pulled away from Michelle Richardson and never looked back.

Thanks to Clint and the Sportsman's crew for a great race.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Woodland Cross

So far Dave is winning our poll. I think he's a good pick. This past Wednesday Dave was flying Don't underestimate Clint. We saw what happened at Rolling Thunder. John Curry will not be racing. Doug is also getting alot of votes. Look forward to the races this weekend. Hope to see everyone out there.

Rolling Thunder Men's A Photos by John Sieber

http://www.jpsphotos.net/gallery/displaythumbs.cfm?c=1&e=61&m=3

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Missoula Cross #5 Photos

Tom Robertson took some nice photos of last night's race. They are at the bottom of the posts.

Missoula Wednesday Night Cross #5

Cross in Missoula wrapped up last night. Well, atleast until the State Championships. There were a couple battles to be fought for the series titles. Dave, Toby, and Doug were all still in the hunt for the series victory.

The men's A started of in usual fashion. Dave, Phil, Doug, and Toby powered away from the rest. Trailing was Brink and myself, followed by Bill, Elliot, Bob, Erik, Mike and John Fiore. Eventually, Phil got a flat and Toby was dropped from the lead group. Doug and Dave powered on. Doug said Dave was on his A game, and was putting him into serious difficulty. They came into the finishing stretch with Doug using his blocking tactics to take the victory. Doug won 3 of the races, and Phil won the other 2. Toby rode good for 3rd. Dave took the series with his second place, with Toby and Doug tying for 2nd. As usual, on lap 2 Bill powered past me and then Brink to hold on for 4th place, and 4th place in the series. 5th and 6th was between myself and Brink. I got close but not close enough. He put a good surge on the last lap and buried me for good. The course suited my strengths with lots of turns, and technical ups and downs. I felt good about my race and look forward to this weekend at the Flathead. John Fiore had a nice race for 7th. The course suited his strengths as well. He was followed by Bob, Erik, and then Mike. We had a great series this year. I'm excited for the Cross-Halloween next week.

The women's series title was sewn up by Heidi Gaskill. She was undefeated in the series. It was an impressive cross debut. Also, props to Heidi for making dinner after the race. Kudos to Sophia Kircos for finishing second in the series and Anna Clark for finishing third.

The men's B series went to Kyle Shannon. It was a well deserved victory. He was consistent all year, and seems to have gotten stronger in the second half of the season. Bookwalter gave him a run but couldn't get close enough. In yesterday's race Dylan Johnson, a local mountainbiker took the victory on his Trek Fuel. He was flying up and down every technical section. He rode almost the entire course. What an animal! He was followed by Bookwalter, Murphy, and Kyle.

The master's race was all but wrapped up by John Wehyrich. Tom Sullivan was giving him a late season run, but was unable to attend the last race. John easily won the series and last nights race. Tom Sullivan finished second in the series. Props to Tim B. the series promoter for finishing 3rd in the series and 2nd yesterday. Thanks Tim!

Thanks to everyone who raced, I'll put photos up by the end of the day.

Masters and Womens Photos - Rolling Thunder

http://www.jpsphotos.net/gallery/displaythumbs.cfm?c=1&e=60&m=3
Photos by John Sieber

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Lubrecht Forest Cross, Montana #5

The temperature's were cold for stop number 5 of the Montana Cross series. The men's A had 10 or so starters, but with Clint, John C., and Frank you knew it was going to be a competitive race. After getting the whole shot John Curry powered away from Frank and Clint to take an impressive victory. It was quite the performance. John really proved that 5th place at the Thunder was not the result he was hoping for. With a showing like that I wouldn't be suprised to see John take the rest of the Montana races. It was a fight for second between Frank Gonzalez and Bill Martin. Bill got the best of the duel, benefitting from a chain slip by Frank. After the top 3 Ben Parsons, Alex Lussier, and Thomas powered in. Both Ben and Alex had consistent performances all weekend. Looking forward to next weekend in the Flathead it should be quite the duel again between Doug, Clint, John C., Frank, and Phil.

In the men's B Howard Williams took a great victory over teammates Kyle Shannon and Erik Digby. These fellas stayed together most of the race. With Erik coming in too hot on the last corner and Howard taking advantage.

The women's race was won by Lisa Curry. Who complete her Missoula cross sweep. She is flying!

See you at the Northern!!!!

Rolling Thunder Men's B Photos by John Sieber

http://www.jpsphotos.net/gallery/displaythumbs.cfm?c=1&e=59&m=3

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Rolling Thunder - Race Wrap Up

We had an excellent evening of racing on Saturday night. It was a great atmosphere. The racing was exciting and entertaining. The first race was the men's B. I knew this was going to be a competitive race. It lived up to it's billing. My pick for the win Bob Presta ended up in 2nd place. He was overtaken by a flying Chris Connelly. Connelly, used superior technical skills to distance himself from the rest. Holding on for third was Erik Digby. He benefited from a great start, and showed determination holding onto that third spot. 4th was Kyle Shannon who had a nice solid race. Murphy Woodhouse battled with Matt Shryock for 5th, with Murphy winning the battle for the last podium position. There were some Spokane riders in the men's B. It was nice to see some other guys out there.

Next up was the masters and womens race. Chance Cook out of the Flathead took a huge lead and never let up. I'd never heard of him until Rolling Thunder, but I guess he's a strong rider. He looked impressive all race long. Holding true to form John W. was 2nd, followed by John Fiore, Scott Smith, and Tom Sullivan. Tom traded bikes halfway through the race and powered through most of the field to take the last podium spot.

In the women's race the battle I had anticipated never played out. Lisa Curry took the hole shot and never looked back. It was probably the most impressive performance of the night. She dominated the field, and made the technical sections look easy. In second, was crowd favorite Heidi Gaskill. Heidi had a solid race, and wore a sweet outfit. After Heidi was Michelle R, Allison??, and Megan Gaskill.

In the men's A we saw all sorts of suprises. Clint Muhlfield was in control all night long. Even with a couple mechanicals, when Clint was on his bike he looked like he was in charge. Doug gave him a challenge, but it just wasn't meant to be. The closest he got was when Clint switched bikes and Doug passed him before the pit of dispair. Doug held the lead for a couple laps, until Clint not panicking slowly grabbed his wheel. He sat on him awhile and some road tactics came into play. Clint waited until the right moment and gapped Doug for good. The barriers action between these two was amazing. Neither of them lost speed through the barrier section. In an impressive third place was Frank Gonzalez. At one point Frank came painfully close to catching the two leaders. He looked strong from start to finish. In a suprising appearance Jamul Hahn took fourth. He flew through the course, and didn't really had to defend his position. John Curry rounded out the top 5. It's a case of what might have been for John. He had a dropped chain on the first couple laps, and fell out of the top ten. He battled all race long, passing people and making headway to finally finish 5th. The battle for 6th was fun to watch. Toby ended up in 6th with a nice move on Ben Parsons in the final barrier section, but between Dave, Ben, Toby, and Alex L. the battle was heated. I was super impressed with Ben Parsons and Alex. I thought they both rode a strong race and maintained very well. You can't be to impressed with Ben considering he went from at cat 5 on the road to a cat 2 in one season. Also, Dave I thought had a nice race. At the start he took the hole shot, then faded, but didn't fade to far back and battled to stay in the top ten. Elliot had a great race riding to 12th place, and never letting up.

Overall, I thought everyone at the race had a good time and that's whats important. I will be posting links to photos as soon as I get them.

Rolling Thunder - Results

Cat1/2/3 Men


Muhlfield Clint 12

1
Cat1/2/3 Men


Shryock Doug 114

2
Cat1/2/3 Men


Gonzalez Frank 336

3
Cat1/2/3 Men


Hahn Jamul 102

4
Cat1/2/3 Men


Curry John 328

5
Cat1/2/3 Men


Meirerbachtol Toby 101

6
Cat1/2/3 Men


Parsons Ben 103

7
Cat1/2/3 Men


Lussier Alex 325

8
Cat1/2/3 Men


Hartman Dave 4

9
Cat1/2/3 Men


Gaertner Tim 208

10
Cat1/2/3 Men


Dubrowsky Tomas 331

11
Cat1/2/3 Men


Kuchenbrod Brink 108

12
Cat1/2/3 Men


Bassette Elliot 109

13
Cat1/2/3 Men


Butterfield Matt 21

14
Cat1/2/3 Men


Kindred Troy 105

15
Cat1/2/3 Men


Martin Bill 110

16
Cat1/2/3 Men


McDonald Mike 107

17
Cat1/2/3 Men


Keister Jason 403

18
Cat1/2/3 Men


Chauvin Ted 120

19
Cat1/2/3 Men


Grove Phil 195

dnf
Cat1/2/3 Men


Halpin Brendan 104

dnf
Cat1/2/3 Men


Horan Ben 194

dnf
Cat1/2/3 Men


Tack Josh 106

dnf











Cat4 Men


Connelly Chris 145

1
Cat4 Men


Presta Bob 315

2
Cat4 Men


Digby Erik 471

3
Cat4 Men


Shannon Kyle 454

4
Cat4 Men


Woodhouse Murphy 137

5
Cat4 Men


Sirott Michael 141

6
Cat4 Men


Kromiral Andrew 189

7
Cat4 Men


Aleto Tony 140

8
Cat4 Men


Cloute Justin 148

9
Cat4 Men


Herlinger Mike 141

10
Cat4 Men


Williams Howard 401

11
Cat4 Men


Williams Jeremy 440

12
Cat4 Men


Wilkinson Lucas 147

13
Cat4 Men


Mysse Steve 139

14
Cat4 Men


Brown Jim 142

15
Cat4 Men


Scott Colin 149

16
Cat4 Men


Swain Doug 144

17
Cat4 Men


Twohig Jeff 461

18
Cat4 Men


Lapel Matt 136

19
Cat4 Men


Williams Patrick 452

20
Cat4 Men


Bookwalter Jeff


dnf











Master Men


Cook Chance 253

1
Master Men


Wehyrich John 13

2
Master Men


Fiore John 221

3
Master Men


Smith Scott 216

4
Master Men


Sullivan Tom 200

5
Master Men


Coulthard John 248

6
Master Men


Tietz John 171

7
Master Men


Dyford Byron 209

8
Master Men


Juras John 213

9











Women



Curry Lisa 127

1
Women



Gaskill Heidi 190

2
Women



Richardson Michelle 111

3
Women



Bealle Allison 194

4
Women



Gaskill Megan 195

5
Women



Longmire Danyel 193

6
Women



Grove Kelly 172

7
Women



Kircos Sophia 191

8
Women



Jackie Yamakka-Williams 126

9

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Missoula Wednesday Night Cross #4

You'd like to call the Missoula races tune-ups or practice races for the Montana weekend events. In theory they are, but in Missoula they have formed into the who's who of bicycle riding. Beyond the top 4 in the men's A group, riders are fighting tooth and nail for every place they can get. Yesterday, as I started my usual race fade from front to back, I started falling farther back then normal and got the pleasure to see some of these battles. The Men A started off ok, with Dave, Toby, and Doug forming a group and putting the pressure on early. Bill did his usual thing, by passing all of us took take a solo fourth place. Doug attacked Dave and Toby on the bunny hop log and then blocked them through the S-curves to take the victory. He did it on his new bike, which I think will give him the confidence he needs to get on the Thunder podium. Dave consistent again, showed why has owned this series for the past couple years and finished 2nd. I believe that puts him on top of the series. Toby, mastered the art of hung over racing and held on for third. I don't quite no where all the A's finished up, but I believe Elliot grabbed and impressive 5th place, followed by Mike, Brink, Horan, and Erik D. This is where some real racing is going on. The 5th-10th places are battled for each week. There is never a pack, it's just every rider going all out trying to catch the person in front of them. It's great racing. Each rider has their own strengths. It was nice to see Horan up there again, he's definetly established himself as a rider for the future. Also, Erik had a good race, staying steady the whole time.

In the men's B Kyle Shannon put on an impressive showing. Some say it was fueled by his lack of being in the pre-Thunder race predictions. Whatever the case Kyle showed the B's what was up last night. Tom Sullivan and Kyle teamed up for the second half of the race and distanced themselves from the masters and men's B fields. Speaking of Tom Sullvian.....he the performance of the night. Tom, came out on a mission and easily won the masters. He's got a new cross bike and he's racing Thunder, watch out! John W., came in a consistent 2nd holding on to his masters series lead. Bookwalter finished second in the B's and continues his impressive riding on a mountain bike.

In the women's race Heidi G. continued her domination. I don't know who came in after that, but I'd really like to know. Megan G. was up there for sure as well as Kelly G. and Danyel. Looks like it will be a strong women's field at Thunder.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Rolling Thunder Preview

With Rolling Thunder coming up this Saturday, I thought I would come up with my official predictions, thoughts, and observations:

Men's A
The men's A race has been built up by the lack of appearances by Missoula racers in the Montana races. This includes Phil Grove, Dave Hartman, Doug Shryock, and Toby Meirerbachtol. All four of these guys have been dominating Missoula cross for the past three weeks. However, in the Montana races John Curry has continued his form from road and mountain and had impressive showings in all three races. You can't count out Frank Gonzalez or Bill Martin both guys have been having great cross seasons so far, particularily Frank who seems to be having his best cross season to date. Then there are the Flathead guys, consisting of Clint and Ben Parsons. Clint is the defending Rolling Thunder Champion and will be making is cross season debut this year at Rolling Thunder. Clint "the lung" Muhlfield cannot be counted out. Especially after his impressive Rolling Thunder performance of 2006. Ben Parsons jumped onto the scene this year in road biking, taking a couple big races. He is an unkown quantity in cross but you can't count him out. Don't forget about the legend, Geoff Proctor, he's always up for suffering.
1st: Phil Grove (he's on a roll in Missoula racing, 2 victories Missoula cross, 1st hillclimb 13:04, 2nd at the Duathlon the kid doesn't even run!, 2nd at least year's Thunder motivates him for the W this year)
2nd: John Curry (the guy is a legite athelete, so far he has two 2nd's, and a win in this year's Montana Cross, I'd say he's good for a podium at Rolling Thunder)
3rd: Doug Dale Shryock (it's always a risk picking Doug with his mechanical problems, but when this guy is problem free he puts the power into the cross bike, he has one victory in the Missoula series, but he will make the podium at Thunder I guarentee it)
4th: Clint Muhlfield (Clint's fast and will always be fast, but I haven't seen him race this season, he's in 4th because of last year's result at Thunder, and I know he won't let Shryock's wheel go)
5th: Toby Meirerbachtol (his new bike has been the difference this year, he's got a 2nd and 3rd in the Missoula series, and is hungry for a top 5 at the Thunder, besides Dave he could be the best technical rider in the field)

Men's B
The men's B is always highly contested as we saw at last year's Rolling Thunder. It's a great group of up and comers and fit, but not as serious racers. This year we have lots of racers who are really on the border of A's and B's. Rimrock Racing has been at the Montana Cross races and had strong showings. However, the Missoula guys are still showing the B field what's up.
1st: Bob Presta (if he doesn't upgrade to A's, he'll be hard to beat in B's, his technical skills are starting to catch up with his natural power and fitness, watch out)
2nd: Ben Horan (if he races B's watch out, he's been building fitness and focusing on cross this year, no mistakes or mechanicals and he's on the podium for sure)
3rd: Warren Smith (a Rimrock racing guy he's posted consistent results, and is poised for a podium spot at Thunder)
4th: Erik Digby (impressive showings at the Missoula series as well as in Butte grabbing the hole shot, I expect Erik to be in the top 5)
5th: Murphy Woodhouse (Murphy is winning the Missoula series, but I'm nervous about his consistency, he's pumped for the Thunder should be in the top 5 if he races to his potential)

Women
Just like the Men's A we have a showdown between Missoula racers who have yet to prove themselves at the Montana level versus proven Montana-wide talent. Heidi Gaskill has stormed onto the Missoula scene with two victories. Lisa Curry continues her presence on the Montana circuit, she won in Butte and I'd expect to see her in the hunt at Rolling Thunder. Also, we have Michelle Richardson, Danyel Longmire, and Megan Gaskill all fighting for a spot on the podium.
1st: Heidi Gaskill (when she races she wins, it's as simple as that, I watched her at mountain bike nations......."an untapped well of natural talent")
2nd: Lisa Curry (she is the best racer in the field, she knows how to race, and gets results)
3rd: Danyel Longmire (I gotta go with my teamate on this one, she is getting faster, and her running will put her over the top on a run heavy Thunder course)
4th: Michelle Richardson (consistent performances put her in the top five, but Danyel will be peaking for this race)
5th: Megan Gaskill (not as good on the dirt is she is on the road, but still unlimited power, watch out for her on the pavement sections)

Master's Men
The master's men is another hottly contested field. I'm convinced most of these guys could and should race A's. However, it provides great racing and competition. The perenial Missoula racing legend John Wehyrich will be the hunt, but there are also some newcomers.
1st: John Wehyrich (he's to consistent not to pick, plus he's been getting better all season, I'd be suprised if he wasn't in the top two)
2nd: Scot Smith (another Rimrock guy who's got what it takes, I believe he's new to the sport but I expect big things from him at the Thunder)
3rd: John Fiore (the legend of Missoula cross will again show we he kills at a technical course)
4th: John Coulthard (another consistent racer, who always seems to be up there, expect to seem him in the top five)
5th: Tom Sullivan (he's a tough rider with tons of power, even on a mountain bike I wouldn't be suprised to see him in the top five)

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