We do some odd S%$* here in Utah. For example, The Fourth of July can never, ever fall on a Sunday. In case it does, most of the State the which proclaims “Life elevated” as it’s motto, holds the fourth on the third. Sometimes it’s on the Fifth. Anyway, yesterday, July 3 2010, the City of Holladay (yes we spell things in unique ways too.. of course it was some dudes name) put together a small bike race as part of their Fourth of July Celebration. A great three straight course with two 90º corners and a 180º sweeper made for good times as the men (why there was no women’s class is a mystery to be solved later) did 60 minutes and 3 laps. The race honored long time Utah cycling advocate and the driving force behind the Tour Of Utah, Terry McGinnis. Terry passed last year shortly after the completion of the 3rd running of the Tour Of Utah, after a long battle with cancer.
Saturdays race brought out 70 of the top Utah racers in categories 1-3. Cameron Hoffman (Bikers Edge/Destination Homes) took the win, after spending some time off the front in a short lived (aren’t they all?) break with Nordic Combined Medalist Billy Demong (Cole Sport Racing).
The boys from Coles, lacking a field sprinter, contented themselves with scarfing up nearly all of the lap prems. In all a pleasent afternoon in the 801, with a light breeze, moderate temperatures, good roads and a well supported race for the 3 of July Celebration.
Additional images on the new Fred Marx.
The Fred recently had the opportunity to spend a week following the North American pro circuit into mountainous Oregon. What’s going on in Oregon in June you ask? The 2010 Indie Hops Mt Hood Cycling Classic. From a sodden speedway prolog, to sun drenched roads in east central Oregon, the folks from Breakaway Promotions and the Oregon Bike Racing Association (OBRA) gave a clinic on how to run a great bike race. Begin with a race director, Chad Sperry, who obviously loves the sport. Chad put his heart, soul and back into running this event. Add to this some incredible terrain, strong course selection, and a herd of volunteers, and you have the makings of a great race.
All that remained was to get a solid field to contest the race. The Classic drew United Healthcare p/b Maxxis, the Bissell Professional Cycling Team, Hagens-Berman out of Seattle, Red Truck Brewing, Total Restoration Cycling from the Okanogan Highlands, as well a collection of teams and individuals from the western states. Olympic medalist Billy Demong, came to contest the race, riding for Colesport out of Park City Utah.
United Healthcare brought the strongest team. They demonstrated their power by taking the leader jersey worn by Paul Mach (Bissell Pro Cycling) on the first road stage, and never letting go. Morgan Schmitt wore his first ever leader jersey following a slippery circuit race on the slopes of Mt Tabor Park in Portland.
During a puncture filled Mt Adams Road Race, Schmitt was penalized 20 seconds for “excessive drafting” behind the neutral support car after a flat. UHC, unaware of the penalty, rode to control the tempo and reel in a break away of four riders. Nic Hamilton (Red Truck Brewing) survived a long day in the break to win the second stage over a fast closing pack of riders including UHC’s Marc de Maar and Sam Johnson of Hagens-Berman. At the conclusion of the stage Schmitt was preparing to don the yellow jersey for a second time when the officials posted the penalties and protests. As a result of what DS Gord Fraser felt was a debatable penalty, the Yellow Leader Jersey was bestowed upon Marc de Maar. At the height of the action Torsten Kjellstrand of The Oregonian caught the UHC team car and crew in an unusual predicament. Having picked a bad line through a corner, the team crew was forced to do a wheel change. No neutral support for caravan vehicles.
No stage race is complete without a time trial. The Mt Hood Classic obliged with the Scenic Gorge Time trial. 18 miles from The Dalles west along the old Columbia Gorge Highway, US 30, to Hood River. This section of road, famous for the Rowena Loops and the Mosier Twin Tunnels, is far from flat and presented a course that made it difficult to settle into a strong rhythm. The morning dawned gray, cold and rainy. By start time the clouds had fled and the sun burst forth. Then came the one thing that Hood River is well known for, the wind. Windsurfers and Kite Boarders don’t call this place heaven for nothing. Note the prominent white caps marking the Columbia River below.
Following stage 2 the overall was close between Marc de Maar (UHC) and Bissell’s Paul Mach. De Maar was able to extract 14 seconds from Mach in the time trial. The groundwork was laid for a decisive Queen Stage, The Wy’East Road Race, to be run on a 91 mile loop from Mt Hood Meadows to Dufur Oregon and back.
Image has a nasty pink tint from the filter I used. Note to self replace the filter. The filter needed to go from upper right to horizon left. Note to self check twice on things like that so as to avoid blown highlight. Placement of the horizon is debatable. I wanted the feel of empty so I tried to empasize that with sky and foreground. Maybe too much of both.Horizon is tilted slightly to place the let higher than the right. I could go either way with it. Everything is leading to the left, so the tilted Horizon doesn’t cause me that much grief. I like the dark cast to the image. The light falls off hard to the right and is probably recoverable with additional post process. Note to self keep working on post as much as you hate it. Better placement of the ND Filter would have helped that too. In addition, a higher POV would have placed the reflected clouds further on to the water. Note to self double check your framing.
Better. Too blue for my liking. More post. Changed crop to de-emphasize the sky and took a bit of the foreground and the blown highlight at left. Played with color balance and recovered some of the EV on the right. Image is better balanced now. Helps that the left isn’t over bright as well since it no longer dominated the eye.
What say you?
Saturday brought us the Downtown Crit, sponsored by Bingham’s Cyclery. The fun started early in the am at Pioneer Park in SL,UT. Racing went on until 4 in the afternoon. On the line, a very sharp Blue Shirt, from Blackbottoms, and the claim to being the crit champ for a year.
Round and round the boys and girls went in pursuit of the goal. Breakaways went, and came back. Some even stuck till the end. Many came to start, some finished, some did not. Some brought the suffering face.
The Pro 1-2 boys from Cole Sport buried themselves to try hold their race together to no avail. Dave Harward and the Canyon Bicycles team proved to be to much of an obstacle to overcome. Text book team tactics from Canyon and Mi Doule-Barbacoa meant a two man break of Harward and Norm Bryner stayed away for the win, despite the concerted effort of Coles and FFKR.
On the Ladies Side things were somewhat more civilized with riders swapping leads, as the bunch rode a solid pace. Nichole Evans of Millcreek Bicycles decided it was time to make her mark and rode off to a solo victory at three to go.
additional images posted at Downtown Crit
It can be very hit or miss this “spring” in California. Some times sunny and warm some times meh not so. It’s a change of venue and that’s what counts. So of course when one changes locales one must take snaps. Here is the local sea lion colony in The La Jolla Cove. These are not the Seals Of Much Contention that live around the corner in The Casa Pool. These are free range sea lions.
Bzzt Bzzt Bzzt…. wha? it’s 10 o’clock? ALREADY? &%$#. Five minutes later the cell phone plays a merry little jingle. OK now it’s time to get out of bed. It’s OhDark pm, and time for a Snowcat operator to start the day. S&%$, shower, shave, pull on some clothes, and out to the truck. Oh goody, the thermometer says it’s only 32º, just cold enough to freeze. This could be fun, or not.
1130pm clock in, eat something, dish out a ration of &^%@ to the poor guy who opened hos mouth at the wrong time. We’re fun that way. He does this nearly every night. 1245, out of the yard…… For the next 4 hours it’s up the hill, down the hill. Push snow up the hill, put pretty parallel lines on it. Random chatter on the two way, tunes rockin’ the cab.
4 am… NAPTIME! zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…. 5am, Cell phone plays its happy tune and we’re off again. Why you ask? ‘Cause it’s a fine way to be first on the hill. ‘Cause you get to see some interesting stuff in the dark hours. Maybe because you have a predisposition to play with sandbox toys and these are the coolest of the lot. The real reason? You get to see this at about 6 am every morning…..
Yeah I get paid for this……
More images at Pbase