The Tour of Lawrence was the feature event this weekend. It was going to be a hot one, that along with the wind, will make an out and back time trial even tougher. Friday evening was the start of the time trial with a headwind out, coupled with a climb. So, knowing this is one thing, doing it in the most efficient way? Well that would be a question for our very own Kyle Guinn. He did the absolute best out of us all. Kyle took 1st overall in the Cat 3 and won it by almost 15 seconds. Great job Kyle. If you have any advice or secrets please share it with the rest of us. We are all proud of you. As for the rest of us? Well, Michelle Lingenfelser took 2nd place in the Cat 5 and missing 1st by 8 seconds. Everyone second guesses those 8 seconds. Did I leave it all out there? Where could I have made up those 8 seconds? You will have a chance to redeem yourself soon enough. Miss Jennifer Piko threw her hat in the ring in the Cat 4 and suffered with the rest of us to take 5th place. Great effort Jen. Then there is the Cat 4 men and I (Mike Ivancic) ended up taking 8th place. Those are all respectable places. We win when we show up and give it 100% no matter where you place.
Day 2 was even hotter than Friday. The crit was at Haskell University in Lawrence. This 2+ mile course had a ton of turns and an uphill finish. KCBC had a total of 8 athletes that entered the race. 3 of those were the best part of the 8. Our womans team once again showed up ready to race and contend. Madison Shepherd was first up and man did she put on one hell of a race and it was, once again a sprint finish. Madi came out of the final turn behind the cyclist from Tulsa and just could not get past her. Great work Shep! Jennifer Piko rode one of her stronger races and placed 17th out of 20. This was a very large cat 4 womans race. Michelle Lingenfelser also placed 2nd and the only reason she did not win this race was because there was a prem on the final lap. ( A prem is a premium / something of value that is given to the 1st cyclist to cross the start/finish on a certain lap that the officials decide) So, when they announced the prem and belled the final lap, this created a bit of confusion and Michelle let Kate from GP Velotek take the prem and therefore the race. I am going to go out on a limb and say, that will never happen again to Ms. Lingenfelser. As for the men of KCBC? Well, the top racer was once again Kyle with an 11th place finish, Michael Morris 13th and Shawn 21st in the cat 3 race. New KCBC teamate Mike Harrison took 8th in the 60+ category and was 2nd as a cat 4 in the 60+. I, on the other hand, suffered and struggled to stay on with the main group. This tends to happen when you are assisting the director of the race and there all day. Yes, I know what excuses are like, everyone has one:) So, 23rd place is not last but wow! We all suffered in that heat. I was impressed with everyone that showed up to race. But, I have to say one of the most impressive efforts I witnessed, was the one that Michael Allison (Cat 1 racer), from Olathe Subaru racing, put forth. Michael Allison set out on a 75 minute race in 100 degree heat. Micheal took off from the start and built about a 2.5 minute gap over the course of the 1st half of the race. He worked so hard and kept pushing himself but there was a chase group of 4 cyclist and one of those on the chase was a kid by the name of Alex Hoen (pro racer). In that chase group there was also 2 other Subaru teammates that were doing what they could to slow down the train. The lead was cut to 1 minute then 40 seconds. The take over happend right in front of me and we were all amazed when Alex took Michael over. But that was not what amazed me. Nope, what I was impressed with was not the speed that Alex overtook Michael. It was when Alex passed Michael Allison, Michael dug down deeper than he may ever had and he made such a huge effort to chase and get on the wheel of Alex Hoen. So, here is a high level racer that just put out a ton of effort, gets caught in the last lap and has the grit to accelerate enough to catch his opponents wheel and stay on it until the finish. Michael and Alex were neck and neck all the way to the finish line and Alex took the win by half a wheel. It was the best race of the weekend.
Day 3 was the road race around Lonestar, KS. Good news is it was much cooler, the bad news? There was a climb just before the finish. We fielded 8 and had a much better showing on the mens side. Our ladies did a great job with Michelle taking the top podium spot (that’s 1st place for all the non racer, or anyone that has never watched the Olympics). It was not a solo finish for Michelle, oh no! She had to work on that hill climb to beat Alexandra Borjarski-Stauffer (we should recruit her). Michelle did an outstanding job keeping her on her rear wheel through the climb and all the way to the finish. Great effort Michelle, super proud of you! Madison took 4th in the cat 4 and Jennifer finished strong at 14th. As for the men? The big win of the day goes to Mr. John Newman. John put in some incredible efforts and with a group sprint up the hill John worked his way into that 3rd spot. The cat 4 mens field was solid 25 men that all were strong climbers. I was officially pop’d off the back on the hill after the 2nd lap and could not recover. licking my 21st place wounds. As did my good friend John Field. Mr. Field entered the 40+ race that fielded some of the top cat 123 athletes. John is 52, he is also a cat 4. I give him props for sticking with that group as long as he did. John did not finish (DNF) and will be back in a few weeks for the Truman cup road race. As for our boys in the cat 3, they did a great job working the field and Kyle ended up in the 6th spot with Michael shutting the door behind Kyle with 7th place.
The Tour of Lawrance ended up being a well ran 3 day race and next year it will be an omnium and I have a feeling it will bring some bigger teams. As some of you know, my focus is on women in racing. This race series had a total 498 entries. I have said it before, you have 100 women at a race and you will have 300 men. Well, here is proof. 125 women raced this weekend. If you are a race director and are reading this, I think you might need to adjust your marketing. Working with Cindy Bracker (race director) this weekend was a blast. Everyone did a great job and helped out even when they were hot, sweaty and tired. I am proud of all the volunteers that came out and made a bunch of new friends throughout the event. Thank you.
Wednesday Night Worlds!
I want to close this out with something I heard at Wednesday. After the A race Michael Morriss had some words with Shadd Smith about something that happened during the race. I was not in the race and do not know if a wheel was chopped or someone perceived that he was aggressively overtaken? All of that does not matter. Shadd and Michael had some not so friendly words and Michael ended up walking away. All of this was overheard by the official, who let it play out. He knew that if it got to heated he would have to step in. The reason I want to share this story is because of what I was told by this official on Sunday after the ToL, over pizza and a beer. He said that Shadd came up to him this weekend and that Michael had sent him an email. The first thing the official thought was, oh shit! But then Shadd continued to explain that it was a good email and an apology. Michael Morriss, you gained the respect of many people with one email. Well done Mr. Morriss, you are a good man. I don’t mean to air any dirty laundry here, but we all have to realize that everyday we are being watched by those who are new to racing, a Jr racer or a parent that came out to see their 20 year old race. The race gets heated and we all might say something that we regret later. Our egos are no way the size of non athletes:)
I have more respect for a man who lets me know where he stands, even if he’s wrong, than the one who comes up like an angel and is nothing but a devil. ~Malcom X
~every friend you have today was once a stranger. Go out and respectfully meet some strangers!