Wednesday, October 11, 2006

October 8th/9th Gran Prix of Gloucester Report



"Nice bike!" they screamed as I gasped my way around the Gloucester course on a pink single speed 'cross bike with riser bars and v-brakes which is only sort of mine. I've always subscribed to the "if you don't know what you're doing you shouldn't look like you know what you're doing" school of thought. I despise the folks with all the gear and none of the skills to back it up, therefore I didn't want to show up to a USGP race looking like Sven Nys while I have all the 'cross aptitude of Star Jones, or Catherine Zeta Jones, or all the band members of Jesus Jones...except for that one dude with the hat, he might know more about 'cross than I do. For christ's sake look at how I'm holding my bike on the run up, I look like a hipster with a white leather studded belt, aviator shades, and a trucker hat carrying my brakeless fixed gear with a top tube pad up the stairs of my apartment building in The Mission.

Day one was insane, 120 guys in my field, I'm used to racing against maybe fifteen guys, more if it's at an endurance event, but then the starts are much more manageable, sedate even. This was nuts, we all piled into that first corner, a dozen guys stopped or fell over, second corner, same thing. The funny thing is that people were actually whining about it "get the frick outta my way, I'm a B racer coming into the hole shot in 88th place, can't you see I'm in contention, if you don't let me by my sponsors are going to be pissed and they might not let me buy a jersey next year!". Easy Jetboy. After the hole shot we rode around in circles for forty minutes then decided to stop and eat donuts and kettlecorn for the rest of the day and watch the pros do it right.
The Haitian National Team was in attendance both days, they were on clapped out road bikes with no knobbies and their boxer shorts were hanging out of their bike shorts and John Candy was nowhere in sight. Paul Curly was also there, coke bottle glasses, helmet mirror, rear disc wheel, and road tubulars, except unlike the boys from Haiti he was going really, really fast in the master's race.

Day two I upped my gear slightly though not nearly enough to deal with this glorified road course, man I can't wait for some inclement weather, I want shit to get all Belgian, then maybe this ridiculous single speed business will pan out. As it stands I'm a guy on a pink hybrid "discomfort bike" out there trying not to look too incredibly stupid. Who knows maybe by the end of the season I'll have white bar wrap on my riser bars.


1 comment:

IF Chicks said...

I wonder if the Haitian National team had even ridden cross bikes before the race on any dirt??????.... they certainly looked slow on anything that wasn't completely flat. It was like sending sheep into the slaughterhouse in that elite mens race !