Meshberg: Track Nationals Follow Up Report

Hey there team,

Here's a final update to our para track nationals adventure:  The rest of the trip to LA continued to go great.  On our day off, after we went to the track for a little spin, we headed up to Beverly Hills to look for movie stars--we didn't find any but we did get carsick driving around in the hills.

On Sunday we were so much more pro with our warm up and it felt just right.  We had decided the day before to go with a different gear than originally planned and in hindsight we think we went (way) too easy.  We were relaxed and felt great and we gave it our all but were spinning like mad.  In the end we got the silver medal by 3 milliseconds!!!  Unfortunately we missed our podium picture because we had to catch our flight.

On the whole we were quite happy.  This track stuff is so technical and it's exciting to be in that beginning phase where every time you go out you see a huge improvement.  We still feel like we have a long way to go and are looking forward to continuing this journey!!

Here's a picture of us doing our Kilo:

And here's a link to a video of a lap of our pursuit.


Nowak Report: CCC Race #2 Hopkins Park 40+

Last weekend was the second stop on the ChiCrossCup series in DeKalb @ Hopkins Park.  This is the 4th year that we have visited this stop with each year being a very different course.  This year was no different; back was the fly-over (a first in the CCC series last year) but also some new sections thru the woods.  As many of you may not know, last Thursday I was hit by a car on my bike while on my early morning training ride.  Luckily there was not a whole lot of damage to me, just some bruising, swelling, and cuts, but my new Cronus CX was not ridable. I saw my Dr. on Friday and he said that if I felt up for the race on Sunday, he was OK with me doing it.  I woke Sunday feeling better than Sat. so I decided that I would give it a shot.  Worse case is I started the race and pulled out.

Driving to DeKalb it was quite foggy once you got out by Maple Park.  At the venue, there was still a bit of fog when I arrived but it slowly burned off for the start of the 40+ race.  This however left the grass very slick and in some cases a soft upper layer of mud.  The course was a good mix of technical sections with some longer power sections (longer than Jackson Park) and really required 100% concentration throughout.

I did a few laps of the course prior to racing and felt good enough to still give it a go.  I made my way to the start chute to try to scam a start position in the second row.  The typical conversations then ensued:

Them:  "What happened to you?!?"
Me: "Got hit by a car"
Them:  "No s*#$!!!"
Me:  "Yea, but I'm doing ok"
Them:  "Did they get a ticket?!?"
Me:  "Yep."

and so on.

I did end up getting a nice spot in the second row, middle of the pack.  Now here is where I had a "learning experience".  Like I tell the kids that I coach in baseball and basketball, "Always know your competition".  In this case I did, but didn't follow the rule.  The guy in front of me (in the front row) is a notorious BAD starter.  Once again he didn't fail to please.  The whistle blew and I was clipped in right away and powering off.  He on the other hand was fiddling around trying to clip in.  I then had to put a foot down so that I didn't run into him or any others and went from a possible great start to a not so good start (in about 30th).  Over the next lap I worked on passing people (which was difficult to do) while watching the field ride away.  I was much faster than most in the technical sections which was frustrating as I felt I could have stayed with at least the 5th-10th place (or so) riders.  At one point I got as high as 15th, but eventually faded to 19th.

So I ended up picking up a few points for the series overall, but have now dropped from 11th overall to 14th.  Top 10 overall is still in sight so that is still the goal for the season.  I did start the 30+ race right after but after 2.5 laps was not mentally into it and dropped out.

As a team we are still in the top 20 overall, but lost a few points due to off performances by myself and Ben Demong.  Brian McVey had a nice 7th in the Cat 3 and Walt Stoops was 5th (or 6th) in the 60+.

Looks like most everyone else was at the Fall Fling and congrats to everyone who raced those events!!!  Hopefully ABD will begin to have a larger presence at the CCC races.  

Next race is this coming Sunday at Dan Ryan Woods.  For all the details see the CCC website (http://www.chicrosscup.com).  On Thurs. there will be a race preview for the coming Sunday's race.  DRW is a nice course with a good little hill thrown in.

Thanks for reading,

PS.  Also don't forget the ABD 'cross race.  If you are available to volunteer on Oct. 23rd, please let me know.  Still have quite a few spots still open.


And the Results Are In!

We apologize for the delay. As you know we do our best to put on a great race but just like any organization we try to save money where we can and when we found these great tabulation machines on Ebay so we thought results would be easy-peasy. Well as it turns out, they were from Florida and sure enough, we found some hanging chads!!

A huge CONGRATULATIONS goes out to Tower Racing for pulling off the big come-from-behind win to take the 2011 Fall Fling Overall Team Prize!

It looked like Bicycle Heaven had it all locked up in the final race and they were even proclaimed the winner (which we apologize for) but the results crew ten-times checked the standings and the Bike Heaven guys even sent over their hanging-chad specialists to confirm everything- and it was off the strength of Terry O'Grady's sweep of the AM40+ Cat 4/5 mass-start races that Tower won by a margin of just 4 points over Bicycle Heaven!

Congratulations again to Tower and thanks to Bike Heaven for not blowing their big check in one night!

Full results are posted at www.ABDcycling.com

 This was the first year we moved to the team format and we'll make a few
 tweaks for the future (including adding a prize for the winner of each
 category), but we really enjoyed it and would love to hear what you think.
 You can reply to this e-mail or drop us a comment on our FaceBook page at

 A special thanks to all of the ABD volunteers who helped make this happen
 and are deep in preparation for our Cyclocross race on October 23rd. Full
 details on that event are available at www.ChiCrossCup.com


Channel 7 cancelled the West Chicago filming (and results coming soon!)

Thanks everyone that volunteered to hold a mock race at Pella on Wednesday morning, but Channel 7 has cancelled the shooting.

Bummer. Maybe next time!

Thanks again.
Mary Lee

p.s. Official Fling results are coming soon!


Meshberg Update From Track Nationals

Hey team,

Hope all is going well at the fall fling and ABD is continuing to dominate the team points.

Hanging out at Track Nats is an absolute blast. Kim and I flew in on Thursday and went straight to the track, arriving exactly in time for a break in the racing where we were able to get onto the track test it out and get some openers in. This place is really cool. The track is wood, 250 meters and 45 degree banking. Several years ago I'd heard that once you got past the fear you would become addicted to this, and after the last couple training sessions at Blaine and CVC I think I'm finally here!! I think Kim feels the same way.

It's tough trying to figure out exactly when you are going to go and timing your warmup. There's a 3 hour morning session and evening session and then the events during the sessions are listed in order. So unless you are first you really have no idea when you are going to go At the track you'll see a lot of people warming up on their road bikes. In the interest of saving money, we didn't bring our individual bikes out to warm up on, so we rode the trainer together for our warm up. On Friday our first pursuit was in the morning session and the time for this one was going to be a qualifier for worlds, and (if we'd had more competitors) a seeding for the evenings finals.

Our timing for warm up was a little off, we warmed up really early and then sat for a long time waiting to go. We were nervous. We were starting with an electronic holder for the first time and also that morning we'd had to cut my aero bars because they were too far out to be UCI legal. So we went to the start with no practice in this new position, and no practice with an electronic holder. We'd practiced 3k pursuits before but never done one in competition.

Our start out of the holder was just fine, but going into turn one, the bike started wobbling and I had to come out of the aerobars. It was about a lap before I felt comfortable enough to go back into them. After we got our rhythm we felt ok and finished the race without further issue. Our time was 4:15 and we were a little disappointed with that.

The evening session was the finals, and since the time wasn't going to be a worlds qualifier if you were passed by your competitor the gun would be shot and the race would be over. We started the race so much better, relaxing into corner one, staying well within the lane, and gradually getting up to speed. Our following laps were substantially faster. We got caught about halfway through so we were disappointed not to be able to get a new (and better) time but we were thrilled with our improvement. Our next race is the Kilo on Sunday and we are chomping at the bit for that one, feeling more confident in our start and more confident all around.

Kristen Meshberg and Kim Borowicz at the Carson Velodrome

It's a really great atmosphere here. There are lots of other Chicago folks here, and our new friends that we met at Blaine when we were up there training a couple weeks ago (who are all Elena's buddies) as well as people from all over that we know just from the racing scene in general.

Chicago's Val Brostrom rode a great scratch racing, taking a 10 lap flyer. Unfortunately she was caught but it was a gutsy beautiful move. XXX fielded a men's pursuit team and they were fourth overall. Former Chicagoan and current resident at the olympic training center, paralympic rider Greta Neimanas won a gold medal in the individual pursuit last night. But probably the most thrilling race so far was Chicagoan Joe Berenyi's individual pursuit. After Joe's ride it was the general consensus of the entire stadium that it was the best pursuit win everyone had ever seen. It started out with Joe steadily losing ground to his competitor. In the final round of the pursuit, if you are caught by your competitor they shoot the gun and the race is over. It looked as if that was going to happen to Joe. But something changed and he started gaining ground. The crowd was going wild and he inched his way into the gold medal just before the finish. Everyone went nuts and Joe was thrilled.

Today we will be heading over to the track during the break to get in some laps, loosen up the legs and make sure our gear selection is right for tomorrow's Kilo.