SoCal Prestige Cyclocross Heats Up, Draws Mountain Bikers, Women and Juniors
by Dave Sheek
Southern California Cyclocross is now through its second weekend of the season and dual events as CX met MX in San Diego, CA. It was another mountain bike (mtb) and cyclocross back-to-back weekend as San Diego’s rising ‘cross scene piggybacked the Racers and Chasers mtb event Saturday to start the first race of the San Diego cyclocross series season Sunday morning. Overall, it was the most motocross-like race experience cross fanatics have seen as the hot temps and twenty-foot doubles seemed to push racers off their bikes or off the course.
The racing heated up with the skies Sunday morning as the temps reached 100 degrees by midday. Competitors who thought last weekend was hot were begging for the cooler conditions. The amount of sand and jumps on course were not kind enough to allow riders areas of rest, as it was a non stop suffer fest. However, those who had the right descending skills were definitely using them to their advantage as they smoothly pumped through the many transitions.
The early morning competitors showed with a more prominent force and commitment than the later. The women and juniors for the second week brought out the best in So Cal, comprising 35% of the day’s participants! In the Elite Women’s field it was Dorothy Wong (Team SoCalCross-CICLE) taking the win as she hashed it out with Team Duke’s Jill Sisamis. In her first season of cross Sisamis looked strong as she started the pace for the group and continued strong finishing in second with Annette Padilla (Celo Pacific) in third.
The Elite Men’s race brought another weekend of hot action as temps were at a high 102 degrees at race time. It was Gary Douville (Platinum) who took the hole shot to lead the group through the first set of sandy switchbacks and into the first lap. John Bailey (Bailey Bikes) and Brent Prenzlow (Celo Pacific/B&L) followed Douville as the three set a strong pace, opening a gap on the rest of the field. On the second lap, Prenzlow took the lead and opened a gap to take a comfortable win on the day. In second it was Bailey who had a powerful finish even with a rough crash in one of the gravelly dirt sections. And, rounding out the top three was early race leader Douville of Team Platinum in the last race on the day.
Next Race Preview
The next race is on October 4th, and the guys from the Velocity cycling club have been working hard for their second annual cross race when not working, racing, riding, and or occasionally pulling a B.O.B. full of beer. The race was a great success last year with much accolade from the racers and spectators alike. This year, they are making it better.
They have improved the course, eliminating a few of the tight twistys, and will be once again making the effort to build the much applauded hillside stairs. Along side the course improvements this year’s kids race will be a standout. And, again as is standard with Velocity club leader Mike McMahon’s involvement with an event, be it mowing the lawn or racing, there will be beer available.
The racing will be fast and furious and the fun will be plentiful. It’s a local event, for most SoCal riders, at a great venue with easy access, held in the private parks behind Irvine Lake just off of Santiago Canyon. Come on out, bring the kids and enjoy the day.
Pre-register at SportsbaseOnline and save $$$ 5 and 10 race series passes available. More info at: www.SoCalCross.org
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