November 21/08 1:30 am - Ontario Cyclocross Championships Info, BC Cyclocross Championships Preview
Posted by Editoress on 11/21/08
Ontario `Cross Championships
Hosted by ZM Cycle & Fitness
On Sunday November 23rd the 2008 Ontario Cyclocross Provincials will be held at Riverdale Park East, at 550 Broadview Ave. (Toronto)
Features include ride through Beer tent, a Polish band,
The official web site has directions, technical guide, course map, videos and much more.
The organizers have also produced this interesting poster (pdf)
EV Grand Prix of 'Cross/Provincial Cyclocross Championships
South West British Columbia, with its relatively balmy winter climate, has become a hot bed for cyclocross racing. There are two organized cyclocross series in the area, the Vancouver-based BC Cyclocross Cup and the Vancouver Island based Cross on the Rock. This year, both series have worked hard add events in an effort to extend the 'cross season almost a month longer than in 2007. This weekend, the 2008 BC cyclocross season will conclude with the BC Provincial Cyclocross Championships at Foreshore Park in Burnaby.
Although this is the Provincial Championships the Elite races are NOT just for riders with an Elite (Cat 1/2 or Mountain Bike Expert) UCI licence. If you have been racing in the B or Intermediate races and want to race in the Elite category, please come out! Lapped riders will not be pulled unless they pose a hazard.
What can we expect? Of course, there will be some high caliber racing on at a new venue. But it will also be interesting to see who shows up at the races. Below, is a brief preview of riders to watch:
While Canadian National Junior Cyclocross and Mountain bike champion Evan Guthrie (Total Restoration Cycling Team) is considered the hands down favorite in the Junior Men's, this race should be a barn burner with both Kevin Thorpe (Trek Red Truck Racing) and Sebastian Sleep (Rocky Mountain Different Bikes) expected to compete. Thorpe, a monster on both the road and track, has the raw horsepower to do well on the Foreshore Park course. Sleep on the other hand is a strong technical rider with outstanding climbing skills. Both Sleep and Thorpe have been racing in the Men's A category all year, so their cross skills are certainly honed and ready for Sunday.
Lesley Trivett (Wedgewood Cycling) has raced consistently all season and had a good race at Nationals placing third. Road ace Barb Zimich (Zimich Coaching) appears to have figured out cyclocross in 2008, with a series of podium finishes. Zimich is consistent big race performer in road events, so it will be interesting to see if she can apply her road experience and race mindset this weekend. However, Heather King is likely the rider to watch in this category. King has dominated the Women's Masters BC Cup races this year taking first place in five of six events entered.
With former Provincial and National Masters Champion Normon Thibault (Frontrunners) busy racing and organizing the Island Cyclocross cup final, the Masters race should be wide open.
Sean Howie (Reps West Racing) and Brad Collins (Sugoi) have been engaged in a back and forth battle all season at the BC Cup races. Collins bested Howie the last BC Cup race, but Howie has a commanding lead in the overall BC Cup standings and is a strong all around rider. 2007 Provincial and National Masters champ John Fokkema (Aviawest/Van Dessel) has been racing in the Cross on the Rock series and is a strong rider to watch. Scott McGregor (Steed Cycles), Roy McBeth (Local Ride) and Clayton Sansbury (Kona Adobe) have all performed consistently and could be ready for a break out race on Sunday.
Finally, Graeme Martindale (Trek Red Truck Racing) has won just about every cyclocross race he entered this year and finished a respectable 3rd at the 2008 Jim Horner Cyclo-cross Grand Prix in Edmonton. After a mid-season upgrade from the B group, Martindale's has used his endurance, strong running ability and smooth bike handling skills to dominate races.
After breaking her collar bone early in the season and missing most of the BC Cup Races, Jean Ann McKirdy (Local Ride) has shown she has fully recovered by easily winning the past two BC Cup races. McKirdy, the 2008 Canada Cup Mountain Bike XC champion is in fine cross form and will be looking to add to her palmares.
Dawn Anderson (Everti - OBB) has successfully made the transition from mountain biking to 'cross with podium performances against top notch competition in two UCI cyclocross events: Starcrossed (4th) and the Toronto International Cyclocross (2nd). A strong rider with bike handling skills honed from years of mountain biking, Anderson is a rising star on the Canadian cyclocross scene.
Kelly Jones (Sugoi) is a consistent performer and savvy cyclocross veteran. Jones has tonnes of local and international experience, including racing in the 2007 World Cyclocross Championships in Europe. Sarah Stewart (Total Restoration Cycling Team), the 2007 BC Cyclocross Cup champion has made selective appearances at 'cross races this year. A consistent performer, Stewart is always brings her A game for the big races.
Local mountain legend Alison Sydor (Rocky Mountain) did some serious dabbling in cyclocross last year, giving established 'cross stars Lynne Bessette and Wendy Simms a scare in the 2007 Canadian Cyclocross Championships in Kamloops. However, Sydor has been AWOL from any type of serious racing (both mountain and 'cross) in 2008. She is likely fit and may be looking to shake the dust off her cross bike.
Finally, there are rumors that international cyclocross superstar and current Canadian Champion Wendy Simms (Kona) is apparently at home this weekend for the Cross on the Rock Island Championships. Now we are not saying she is going to be racing on Sunday, but she is the defending BC champ and Burnaby is just a short ferry ride from her home in Naniamo.
BC Cup Races have been dominated this year by two Trek Red Truck Racing teammates: Kevin Noiles and Tyler Trace. Noiles has had a particularly strong season and the course at Foreshore Park should play nicely into his repertoire of technical skills and pure power. Trace, the 2008 BC Cup champion has sat out the past couple of races, but we expect him to be ready to race on Sunday.
Drew McKenzie (IRC) the 2008 Cyclocross Single Speed World Champion is also having a strong season and has participated in most of the BC Cup and Cross on the Rock series races. Zach Garland (Kona Adobe) has put his considerable road racing skills to good use this year in cross and has steadily improved through the season.
Now for the What Ifs: Rob Britton (Trek Red Truck Racing) has been strangely absent from the local cross scene in 2008. A former BC Cup champion, Britton is a strong rider and a threat to win any race (road or 'cross) that he enters. Max Plaxton (Rocky Mountain) another local mountain bike pro, dabbled in cyclocross in 2007 but has been away from racing this year. Geoff Kabush (Maxxis), the current Canadian Cyclocross Champion, has made a few select appearances at cross races in 2008, including a strong ride at CrossVegas in October and a surprise appearance at the Cross on the Rock #2 in Victoria in October. The 2 time Olympian and 2008 NORBA mountain bike champ would be considered the odds on favorite if he decides to leave the warm and cozy confines of his Arizona home base to come back home to the wet Coast to race this weekend.
Since I am speculating wildly here, how about former Symmetrics Pro Andrew Pinfold? Pinfold, the 2008 Tour de Gastown winner, last serious season of cyclocross was in 2006. He dominated the BC Cup series only to be beaten by Kabush in the Provincials. His whereabouts is currently unknown, but a battle for Provincial cyclocross supremacy with Kabush would make for a dream race.
Date: November 23, 2008
Location: Foreshore Park, Burnaby, BC. Registration and parking will be at Byrne Road and Fraser Park Drive
Time: Sign on opens at 8:30 am and closes 10 minutes before your start time.
9:30 AM - Open Non-championship race - 30 minutes. This is for racers that were typically in the "C'" or Beginner Race, both men and women will race together, and we'll throw in a surprise or two to keep it fun.
10:10 AM Junior / U17 Women & Masters Women- 30 minutes (staggered start)
11:00 AM - Masters Men & Junior / U17 Men - 40 minutes (staggered start)
12:00 PM - Elite Men (60 minutes) & Elite Women (40 minutes) - staggered start
Note: mountain bikes are allowed in the non-championship, Junior, and U-17 categories. You must use a cyclocross bicycle (drop bars, no disc brakes) in the Elite and Master categories.
Note 2: The Elite categories are open to all riders. Lapped riders will not be pulled unless they pose a hazard.
For complete details, see: www.escapevelocity.bc.ca
About Escape Velocity:
Founded in August 1989, Team Escape Velocity is a Vancouver, BC based cycling club committed to promoting and developing the sport of cycling in Canada. With membership ranging from novice Category 5 riders to Canadian National Team members and North American champions, we pride ourselves in our community involvement, race organization, youth development, and leadership activities. For more information on EV see: www.escapevelocity.bc.ca