Kenny Fetsurka raced at the 2011 Crossasaurus  Awesome cyclocross race outside of Philadelphia in Spring Mountain, and sent in this report as his entry into the KHS Contributor Contest for his chance to win a KHS CX300 Cyclocross Bike.

by Kenny Fetsurka

Kenn Fetsurka having a go at the Crossasaurus Awesome 2011 race. photo: courtesy

Kenn Fetsurka having a go at the Crossasaurus Awesome 2011 race. photo: courtesy

On the morning of Sunday November 13, 2011 in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA, the PACX series race formerly known as Spring Mountain was held. In the Philadelphia area the entire month was enjoying higher-than-average temperatures after the freak snow storm during the last weekend of October, when Beacon cyclocross and HPCX were held.

This is my fourth season racing cyclocross and I’ve been racing for the Philadelphia Bicycle Messenger Association the entire time, even though I technically retired from being a bike messenger before my first cross race.

I race in the cat 4 men’s C race and it was scheduled to start at 10am, which is slightly unusual since most C races start at 9am in these parts but it was a welcome change. It gave me more time to arrive at the course and get a better feel for all the twists and turns and to see if there were any major changes from the season before. My younger brother Mark also races C’s in his first season of racing so there is always a mix up since we’re in the same category and have the same last name, and this would come to be an issue this race which you’ll see why later. I get my number and pin it on and go pre-ride the course and see that its mostly the same as before, just with a few more turns in a section of field the course didn’t enter before. This is one of my favorite races, so as the time got closer to the start, I was getting pretty excited.

Kenn Fetsurka having an awesome time at Crossasaurus Awesome 2011 race. ©CyclingCaptured

Kenn Fetsurka having an awesome time at Crossasaurus Awesome 2011 race. ©CyclingCaptured

Since I have no points in the PA cyclocross series I didn’t get a call up, unlike my brother who has a few top 3s so he got a nice first row call up. After they do call ups it’s a free-for-all for the rest of the field. Awesome. Not. I was in the middle of taking off my windbreaker when they announced that so I’m in the second to last row. They read the rules and give the one minute announcement…thirty seconds…whistle and go! It’s a pretty straight start section so I make up a good amount of spots here but it starts to spread out pretty early and a few of my nemesis from crossresults.com are still in front of me but that’s how I race.

I like to pick people off from behind as they wear themselves out from starting faster than they can handle. The race continues and I’m battling it out with a guy and pass him eventually. Next up is the barriers but there’s still a good amount of traffic here so I dismount and hop over them passing two or three people here (barriers are a strong point for me even though I could work on my running more) and squeeze by a couple more as they’re remounting directly after the barriers where there is a 180 degree turn. I just run right by them rather than fight with them for the space. Two of them catch and pass me in a couple flat straight sections, but it was worth it for the time I was in front of them.

The race is then pretty set, there are a few more people I can see but can’t make it up to until there’s a crash and I pass a guy who normally beats me. The rest of the race I work to keep him from passing me. There’s one more person in front of me who I bridged up to but when he realizes how close I am to him, he turns the speed on and I can’t get to him the rest of the lap, which is our last!

In the end I finish alone since the previously mentioned guy got away from me and I successfully managed to keep the guy from the crash from getting by me. I cool down a little waiting for results to be posted, catch up with some friends and finally they’re up. I don’t bother checking the top of the list since I don’t finish up there but I don’t see my name at the bottom either. Then I notice. Well, well, well, I got second place! Not really though, whoever was doing the results got my brother and I confused, so I’m gonna take that as my best race ever. I actually ended up 44th out of 60 finishers, and finished ahead of some people I normally don’t, and had a good time. I’d say that was a good day of racing!

Stephen Kincaid (Philadelphia Ciclismo) won the men’s race, and Selene Yaeger (Team CF) took the women’s race. Full results on usacycling.org