Written by Troy Nye Thursday, 12 October 2017 00:00
What started out as a just a couple of guys looking for good place to get in some cylocross practice, turned into an every week all-out mixed-mode battle of the Geezers. This past Wednesday was the final installment of the Super-Secret South County Wednesday Night Worlds, or SSSCWNW’s for not-so-short. My vote was Hell of the South Criterium; you’ll see why in a minute. The final iteration of the course was 8 laps of a 1.1 mile loop that was more reminiscent of the spring classic road races over there in Euroland than any CX course I had ever raced. There were no run ups. There were no barriers to hurdle. The primary feature of the course was a 150 meter long, ~10% grade climb up what has to be the only cobblestone path in all of Orange County. Truth is, it is less of a “Path” and more of a “Culvert”. The remaining mile or so was a 50/50 mix of pavement and hard pack fire road.
By last night’s finale, participation had grown from just a handful to a whopping 11. I am not quite sure how that happened because the first two rules of SSSCWNW were both borrowed from Fight Club… if you’ve never seen Fight Club, Google it. Officially, this was not a race per se. Officially, it was nothing more than a group of old fat guys riding in a big circle as fast as they could. Also officially, cash did not get tossed into a jar to be paid to the top 2 places each night. The next 2 rules of SSSCWNW were that riders must be old, and riders must be out of shape. Self-evaluation; check and check.
Interestingly, my personal success increased at roughly the same pace the population of the field increased, starting out 4th of 5. FINALLY, on the final race… scratch that… on the final “fast ride” of the series, I finally placed in the money… which of course we did not officially collect. As I inventoried the bikes and riders at the start of last night’s event, here is what I found: 11 riders - 10 men and 1 very fast woman (she did not meet the last 2 rules of SSSCWNW, but we gave her a pass). 8 road bikes, 3 CX bikes, 1 mountain bike (which was the primary reason she got the pass). Entering the final lap, I was in a 2 way battle for 3rd place, destined to be out of the money again. Then something wonderful happened. The guy who had won more than his share of the “ride fasts”, flatted his 23mm road bike tires on the gravel lead in to the cobble wall. I eventually managed to put a small gap on my guy and finished in 2nd. Thanks to the 28mm tires on my Kona Zone road bike, I did not suffer a single flat throughout the series.
Good Times! Thanks for reading.
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