by Natalia Boltukhova
“Oh, I’m just gonna see where I’m at” – what pretty much all the ’crossers I know were marketing as their excuse while injecting the first dose of cyclocross racing in dried-up veins. Quad Cross in Bedford, MA, saw unprecedented increases in all fields – and so early in the season! Around 40 women 3/4s, 20 Elite females, 60 cat 3 men, and close to 40 Elite men.
Didn’t I hear from some of the Elites that I spotted on Sunday the 12th that “real” ’cross doesn’t start until October, with Gloucester being the marker? I fashion this would be a great excuse for not performing well: “Well, I wasn’t really racing….”
Excuses are many, unlike the winners. Top women positions shuffled between Andrea Smith of Ladies First and Sarah Bresnik-Zocchi, boasting the all new Crossresults.com skinsuit with the not so new lime-green highlight.
A couple of familiar faces and kits were popping up close to the lead – Crystal Anthony (Ladies First) and Linnea Koons (Embrocation) – but never dangerous enough to mess up the upfront duo.
The men’s situation went totally against my expectations (one should already get accustomed to this with men), and Pedro’s Dylan McNicholas repeated Myerson’s solo “oh, I’m just gonna see where I am at” breakaway of last year. Adam followed in second with Philip Wong (Seaside Cycle) in third and last season’s most fierce voodoo target of the cat 3s, Brian Wilichoski of Cyclocrossworld.com, in fourth.
The course was much like last year, offering a great deal of technical turn sequences, “show-off-your-wattage” grassy straight-aways, rolled tubulars, pull-outs and a WWII-like wall of dust that left its signature lip-liner mark on every racer face. Oh, yeah, and coughing, too.