The Ben Popper Diary is back, and this week Ben skips the typical race report to instead take us behind-the-scenes of his three days at the Ohio UCI3 Cyclocross Festival. Ben’s previous entry is here.

Rather than give you another race report of the funny madness I experienced at the UCI3 weekend in Cincinnati last weekend, I figured I’d just share with you the craziest things that happened. Then we can all laugh, and I’ll spare you the complaints about the wheel that bent so badly it rubbed on the brake.

UCI3, a list of highlights:
– At the start line on Friday…”Hey Powers, you opening for Jay-Z tonight?”
“No, why?”
“He’s in town.”
“Naw, I’m already down to do it on his next tour.”

– Friday, we tented up with people who decided to declare the patch of grass on the far side of their van to be a restroom. None of us realized, though, that said patch was slightly uphill from the tent area, and by the end of the day we were all standing in a puddle that no doubt included pee.

– I never knew that along with the 3948 bikes, the Kona trailer also carries a handtruck, several plastic drums, and an actual plug-in pressure washer. So pro.

– I yelled back at Julie when she tried to cheer me on from the pit on Friday, telling her to leave me alone. This single comment unfairly gave me the title of “whiny bitch,” which unfortunately stuck through to Sunday’s race, when a bunch of younger kids decided to chant it every time I rode by.

– At Saturday’s race, the guys were doing handups. Dollars, beers, and… lawn darts? Yeah. Real, metal-pointed lawn darts. I didn’t race on Saturday, but some of the racers took them and tossed them. Nobody was impaled but one got really close to some guy’s feet, I’m told.

– Sunday, my good fried Chris decided to moon me during my race. Right there, bare ass, just beyond the tape. So I did what anyone would do… I took my wet, muddy, glove-covered hand and slapped that as hard as I could. CRACK! I’m surprised he could sit for the drive home.

– I’m really glad that Julie’s getting back to dirtier, less appropriate catcalls for during races – ya know, married people material.

So, while I had a couple great races, I thought I’d rather share these things you would miss in reading a run-of-the-mill race report. But if do care? The weekend offered no knarly crashes, and no UCI points. Just a fantastic and fun weekend of bike racing. This weekend it’s over the boarder to the great white north and racing in Toronto Canada!

Thanks for reading.