Starcrossed and Rad Racing GP, Seattle

Posted: 23 September 2009 in Uncategorized
So the start of the 2009/10 cross season kicked off with a bang last weekend in Seattle.  I decided to drive down solo in order to hang out with Stef and Helen Wyman in Portland earlier in the week.  Shaun Adamson was able to hook us up with host housing at Nicholas Weighalls place who was also hosting Jessie Anthony at the time.   We got to pre-ride the course on Friday and it was basically bone dry, with a little bit of wet sections in the infield, it wasn’t that bad of a course.
 
Starcrossed 2009
 
So I took another ride around the course on my regular tires to see what they’d be like on the changed conditions, and with the 34’s I couldn’t have been happier!  They felt soo nice on the very bumpy terrain.  Although once I was on the trainer warming up, the rain really started to come down, so I decided to get my muds set up on my B bike just in case something were to go wrong.  Thanks Norm and Wendy for helping me out in the pits, without you guys, I would have been royally messed!  I also tried to do the Roddi Lega motocross skid turns to check if the pressures would work, and managed not to crash, so I knew they would work well!
 
Starting off I was able to get the last of the 2nd row call ups.  Getting the nerves going with all the top level racers around, and the fact that it started raining pretty hard, made for quite a bit of fun!  The course was great, with lots of turny sections, some off cambre ups and downs, and even some logs and a barrier set, but for the most part, it was just really wet and sloppy!  I decided to try out the line of Vittoria tires this year as OGC sells them.  Well I couldn’t be happier with my decision!  On the first couple laps I started to wonder why the guys weren’t going harder than they were…  I was sitting in the lead group with all the top guys, as some of them would crash and go backwards, and some would attempt to get off the front.  Basically, I was able to keep it upright for the majority of the race though, which saved me an unbelievable amount!  In the end, it came down to an epic battle of the Canadians, with Myself and Tyler Trace duking it out for 9th spot.  I was able to set a pretty good temp on the front in the last lap, and I think Trace fumbled a bit on the off cambre section which was where I gapped him a bit, and held it home for the finalle! 
 
My first top 10 in a big American Race!!!  I’m super pumped about it!  I know I can hang with these guys if the course is technical enough!  Still have a bunch of physical to work on, but I’m starting to crack into racing with the big boys!!!
 
Rad Racing GP
 
So after the high of yesterday, I didn’t really get to bed until quite late.  Managed to get up though and we headed to the course to do some more racing.  This day was SUPER BONE DRY.  The course was very open and had LOTS of long straight sections, which lead itself to more of a full on head down and hammer course.  It also had about an 80m run up on the back side of the course, which from what I understand, is pushing the limits of being UCI legal… I got a similar call up to the day before with about 2 or 3 guys opting out of racing today and saving themselves for Vegas.  Right off the bat I was starting to go backwards.  I managed to save as many places as I can but every time up the run up i’d just keep going backwards!  Jeremy Powers came by me later in the race and gave me a bit of extra motivation, and we caught back up to Trace;s group, but then once again gapped on the run up!  It was a very hard course today, and with a lot of the open hammer sections, lead itself to a fully physical race.  Still, I managed to get a 16th place, which is better than any result I had last year, so i’m still pretty happy with it.
 
Over all the first weekend of cross racing in 2009 has been a great success!  With a top 10 and a top 20 in the first weekend on 2 totally opposite course conditions, it shows that i’m here to give it a go, and no holds barred!  Next big race: Nationals, then Toronto!!
 
Aaron
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