A few extra carbs to keep the motivation up © Amanda Schaper
by Dave Sheek
Los Olivos, CA- Dirt Club Cross was teased with a morning downpour but the rain stopped and the clouds opened to blue skies and sunshine. It was a great race day with slick morning conditions that firmed up as the sun continued to shine but all were happy to be racing. The course was fun, it was a great layout with fast straights, fun off camber hillside turns, and an epic-Kenda Stairway to Heaven-run up that made riders practically stop moving as they gasped for air.
Amanda Schaper (SDG Factory Team) took the hole-shot and led for the first half of the race. Trina Baumsteiger (Rambuski Law) sat on Schapers wheel brilliantly just waiting for her moment to attack. The chase group was teammates Christina Probert-Turner and Dorothy Wong of Team SoCal Cross. Wong slid back but the two kept the gas on enough to hold off the rest of the field to finish third and fourth.
Elite Women's Podium © Amanda Schaper
With two laps to go Trina made her move to take the lead and put in her fastest lap time. It was enough for a small gap to open on Schaper that Trina held for the win. Schaper finished second and Sarah Brodsky (Bicycle Johns) rounded out the top five in the elite women.
From the start it was another SDG Factory rider, David Sheek, who took the hole-shot, but a few turns was all that was in the tank for Sheek as Gary Douville (Platinum), Brent Prenzlow (Celo-Pacific/B&L), Brandon Gritters (Rock N’ Road), Jason Siegle (Bike Religion) and Anton Petrov (SDG Factory) moved to the front. The race settled within half of a lap as Douville set the pace. Working hard to chase was James Walsh (B&L) and John Behrns (Bailey Bikes), after an early crash, as the two tried to find their way to the front.
Pain and joy all wrapped into one © Amanda Schaper
With three laps to go Prenzlow, Douville, Siegle and Petrov were off the front with riders spread out behind this lead group. One lap to go Petrov was off the group and it came down to three riders. Siegle tried to go too early but could not hold his attack. Prenzlow and Douville came back around and it came down to the sprint where Prenzlow took the win with Douville in second. Siegle rolled in for third and Petrov fourth. Gritters stayed strong to hold off the hard charging chasers to round out the top five.
It was another good race with a fun course and venue for all to enjoy as the fire pit burned all day warming spectators and the MTB pump track gave crossers some entertainment as high saddles and rolled tubulars sent people to the ground for some You Tube-worthy action.
||CELO PACIFIC / B&L
||Rock N Road
||The TEAM SoCalCross
||Simi Cycling Center
||VCRC Factory Racing
||Bobby Langin Jr
||Katrina (Trina) BAUMSTEIGER
||Team Rambuski Law
||The Great Chiweenies
||Higher Cadence-Bannings Bikes