Sunday, September 26, 2010

Rain and Mud Make it Cyclocross

It was a wild racing weekend in Des Moines the past few days.

For those not familiar with Cyclocross, it is described as "a bike race mixed with steeplechase. In cyclocross, riders race laps around a short course that usually features some pavement, some dirt, some woods, some steep hills and for good measure, some obstacles thrown in that require riders to dismount, work their way through and then get back on and ride some more." (David Fiedler @ David's Bicycling Blog)

Saturday's race was held in a steady rain. While to some this would seem to be very poor conditions but the rain did a good job of washing away the mud that would have accumulated and affected racing. Kim H took the women's 45+ race's top spot. Kate also raced through the slop with a strong showing with a bronze medal performance. Julie gutted out another fun day chatting and racing well.

Sunday turned out to be a gloriously sunny fall day. The ground was sloppy but no rain was falling. What was not foreseen was the mud that would accumulate making it nearly impossible to even push your bike up the inclines. Many a women surrendered trying to ride up the hill to try and push, drag and/or curse that heavy bike along. Yes, even a carbon bike is very heavy when coated in mud. The best this roving reporter could offer was a cold beer on the back stretch hill.

Julie G joined the fray donning her unique green helmet along with Kim and Melinda. Jule finished 5th, Melinda 6th and Kim 3rd in the very competitive 45+. Dave joined in the muddy fun and took 2nd in his 45+ race.

Check out MOMENTUM or for a list of upcoming races.

Your roving, muddy race reporter,


Chequamegon 40 Photos

Follow the fun with these great photos. Thanks to everyone from whom I pilfered these!

Dee asking Kim "Did you really just say THAT?"

Kim racing.

Right: Proof that Karolyn and Kim finished!

Your roving race reporter,


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Chequamegon 40 Race

Karolyn on route.

This is a 40 mile ride that starts innocently enough on a paved road but you had better enjoy the short journey as it heads off on the real path. Many of the latter roads are logging roads with active traffic. If you have ever had a VW Bug scare you while on your bike on a road in DM, try a fully loaded logging truck!

This is what 9-time racers Dee and Dave on the tandem along with first-timers Kim, Karolyn and Julie G faced on a beautiful fall day as they attacked the 40-mile course. While it can be deceptively beautiful the challenge should not be understated.

Or may be teammate Kim H put described it as only one whom road it can do:
"At the start gun 1700 riders rolled elbow-to-elbow past the cheers of the crowd lining the town of Hayward through Rosies's Field and onto the Berkie Ski Trail. Racers were treated to beautiful forest trails, breathtaking lake views, fast gravel forest roads, excruciating climbs, more cheering crowds, sweeping descents, giant mud puddles and even a band of heckling pirates bearing rum shots. The race finished 40 miles later at the Telemark Ski Lodge in Cable, WI." It has been stated that while in the 35-38 mile range many riders are thinking, "I will never do this again IF I manage to finish this." However, shortly after completing, the celebration with friends made it safe to plan to ride it again next year.
In the photo: Karolyn, Kim, Dee, Maria, Julie, Sally and Heather

The website for this race contains this course warning: "PLEASE NOTE: This map is intended for general directional purpose only and not detailed enough to use for orienteering in the woods. Always take along a compass, detailed maps and plenty of fluids when riding in the deep woods. The courses are off-road and on a variety of unmaintained trails. Riding hazards exist and extreme caution should be exercised when riding in the woods."

Warnings aside, the VeloRosa ladies and our favorite bike guy, Dave, conquered this challenge.

See the following blog for lots of pictures from this event!

Your roving race reporter,


Melinda Manipulates Minneapolis

With sister Michelle and daughter Jennifer along for support, Melinda R. traveled to Minneapolis in late August to show that lake state how to du it VeloRosa style. She completed the Team Ortho Minneapolis Duathlon.

Her pink-team bike training paid off big time as she posted a streaking 1:00:09 for the 17.2 mile bike leg which was sandwiched between two 5K runs. The hot and humid weather made for a tough day.

She finished in the top third for women overall as well as in her age group.

Congrats to Melinda for finishing well and for taking our team to the north for this event.

Your roving race reporter,


Pink Gals Stomp Snus Hill Winery

Julie and Robin rode over to the annual wine stomping at Snus Hill Winery in late August to try their feet at making wine. Snus Hill is located in Madrid and each fall it allows wine aficionados and crazy bike chicks to stomp grapes and play winery games.

Julie was the best at bobbing for a water balloon, running it to a chair and then using her bike-toned buns to smash it. She put down more than anyone else in the one minute contest. Her teammates always suspected that she was multi-talented. Now that is a proven fact.

Robin's miles of biking, drinking and dancing paid off as Robin was voted the most energetic grape smoosher.

Once again, Team VeloRosa shows that a biking team is only as good as it is at having fun. And those team kits look outstanding off the bike.

Your roving (once again) bike reporter,