Friday, September 19, 2008

Charm City Cyclocross this Sunday

Finally! CX season is here.

This Sunday.

In Baltimore.

The Charm City Cyclocross.

I did this race last year, which was my first CX race ever, and my first race in almost 15 years (and I also did it the day after Yom Kippur; 40 hours of hard, fast riding after 25 hours of hard fasting). And since then, much has changed. Last year, I decided to race 'cross only a few weeks before the season started; this year I've been training all season in preperation for 'cross. Last year, I was unsure if I really wanted to race, and decided to do Charm City as pure experiement - complete trial run; this year, I'm fully focused on 'cross and commited to six races so far. Last year I felt like a goofy recreational rider on the start line - a misplaced yapping poodle in a rabid pack of greyhounds; this year I've worked to become a greyhound ready to race as hard and focused as the next guy.

But despite it all, I had a good race last year. Even though the organizers screwed up the results, I apparently placed in the middle of the field, somewhere between 30th and 40th place out of almost 90 riders. And I had fun. Ridiculous amounts of fun. In between post-race hyperventilating, I had a huge smile on my face. Now I'm ready to do it again, but this time more serious, more foucused, more commited - ready to experience 'cross at a higher level and experience a higher level of 'cross enjoyement.

And before I even begin, I need to give thanks to my wife, my family, my friends, and my sponsor - The Bike Rack - for all of thier support leading up to the 'cross season.

And most of all to The Holy One, Blessed Be He, for seeing me safely through the year and allowing me to have the most precious fan of all - a beautiful, healthy, happy nine-month old.

So now let the skies open up (it is near Sukkot anyway!), let the cowbells ring, let the mud ooze, let the body power, let the bikes fight, and let the Belgian Ale flow - it's cyclocross season.

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