September 24, 2007

Cyclcross Season Starts

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Well, I ended up going to Michigan for the cross races. Kyle Jacobson offered to drive the ISCorp team car which made the decision easier to make. We arrived a couple hours later than we hoped and got on the course just before it was pitch black out for a couple laps. They have been doing this race for a bunch of years now and each year it has gotten better. If their goal is to bring in a high quality pro field their marketing is working and with a great course like this year I'm sure more will be back next year. The quality of riders towing the line was impressive. Page, Mueller, Reign, Myerson, Prenzlow, Jones, Tilford, to name a few on the front line and a combined total of 4 former national champions, two of USA, one current Canadian champion, and one former Swiss champion. Basically, a top 1o meant you were a somebody.


I should take this next opportunity to say that I have signed with a new Cyclocross for the '08 season -Planet Bike out of Madison, WI. I am very excited with the program they have set up for me, and with the added support and equipment I am receiving, I should be able to race the bigger USGP's and race weekends around the country. It will be an exciting season with them and I'm looking forward to it! And oh yeah, white skin suites baby!


As far as the racing went in Michigan this weekend, I had a bit of bad luck. I've raced two full seasons the last two years and never had trouble like I had this weekend. I think most of it was because I was somewhat unprepared, but also from being a little too careless with my tire setup. Planet bike is hooking me up with Zipp 303 tubular wheels with Tufo tires, probably quite close the lightest cross setup there is and a world class combination. I've never used tubulars before, believe it or not, and while I had a bit of bad luck with them on Saturday, I think two laps was all it took to completely turn me into a tubular guy. The wheels and tires were like nothing I have ridden before, super light and fast while still running low psi. It was so much better than my super secret Michelin setup I've been running. I ask myself this - how did you race at Worlds with clinchers??? Well, after topping off my tires I didn't notice the valve core was sticking on the adapter and I slowly lost air over the first two laps until I got my second bike out of the pits and continued on that. I wasn't having my best race by far, but I stuck it out and finished 20th and glad to have finished the first UCI race of the season against a stacked field.

Day 2 I decided to go back to my own Michelin tires setup just so I would feel comfortable and it worked until the third lap on an uphill, off camber section where I completely ripped the tire off the rim. I was sitting in the 10-13 group quite comfortably, but the course was extremely fast and dry so when I hit the sharp uphill while turning it was too much for the rear tire and it just came off the rim. I had to run 1/3 of the course back to the pits and was in the 30s by the time I got going again. I still felt good so I went through a couple groups back into the upper 20s, but I sort of popped then and lost motivation when there were no more groups within eyesight to move forward too so I decided to call it a day and save it for another.

I'll spend some time the next few days learning the equipment and testing out the tufo tires. It was good to get the first race out of the way and hopefully I can keep improving on the form.

6 comments:

kyle said...

Wow you left out the whole non-sliver Sliver Dome, the qudoba fiasco, left lane driving, and the reason we stayed 45min from the course...

Anonymous said...

Thanks alot for making the trip to Michigan, it was really nice having all the big names here. Hopefully you can make it next year and have some better luck. Good luck on the rest of your season. ~ Matt A.

joe1265 said...

Tristan, thanks for coming. It was great to see you out there again this year. Yea, that was a heck of a field, wasn't it? Jonathan Page was just a super friendly guy and I could listen to Tilford all day. He had so many stories from his years of racing.

If you're headed to Vegas, than the conditions this weekend should have been good preparation.

I hope to see you at more races this year, like Louisville USGP.

Take care,
Joe

Colin R said...

Hearing that you rode clinchers all last year makes me feel so much better about my crappy clincher setup. Thanks dude!

rachel said...

sorry about your luck! it was good to see you. i meant to come chat, but i didn't see you after my race.

Karew said...

Hey Tristan,

Can you elaborate a bit on how to set up a set of clincher cx tires with the system? I did a race out here over the weekend and had three flats due to goatheads, thinking of cutting a tube open and wrapping it around my good tube for flat protection.

Thanks,
Jason Karew