The Summer Crux
“Crux: bottom line; the bulls eye; the hard, main challenge. The word stems from the Latin word “cruc” or cross and implies great suffering.” Though I plan on lots of lung-searing, leg-burning intervals my hope is that the leader the of race feels like he is doling out the suffering.
Todd Wells and I are locking horns in an exciting battle for the Pro XCT overall. Trailing by 35 points after close second at the Bump and Grind last week, I am fired up for the remaining 4 races. Just one spot next week would put me back in the lead, so 35 points is actually a small margin.
In addition to the Pro XCT’s of course are the two National title races I am pumped on; Marathon National Championships in Sun Valley and Cross Country National Championships at Bear Creek PA. After that I might add a stage race later on like Breck Epic, or I might just go fishing and call it a great year and start building a cabin on top of a cliff somewhere, nah…
Back to the latest happenings since the May training block;
I took a few days off. Work on the Gran Fondo is going great (mostly thanks to my wife Erin)
We are very excited to welcome aboard Flow Porsche of Charlottesville . We share their enthusiasm for doing things with exceptional style and panache. Check out their page, and take time to sign up for the Porsche newsletter for great photos and stay up to speed on all amazing new cars they have and are about to launch! This year’s Fondo will have an even more robust finish line party with bands, beer and fun. I think we’ll have more reasons for everyone to come check out the scene. It’s great to welcome back New Belgium Brewing; I just tried the ROlle Bolle and it was crisp citrusy summer beer with hints of honeysuckle – or maybe that’s just a smell wafting down from the cool mountains nearby.
Next up, “Blood Camp” in Beech Mountain North Carolina was fun – kind of. Right after Bump I drove up to meet with star climbing ace and winner of the Mt Washington Hill Climb; Cameron Cogburn. Let’s just say he goes up hill like Porche 911 turbo. We hit some epic rides in the high-country including 3 days and 30,000 ft of climbing on Sugar, Roan, little Switzerland and Beech mountain! I was tired from two hard races, as you might imagine, but stoked because with this the prep for the summer block is mostly done!
Speaking of Switzerland; it was awesome seeing Joe D at Tour of Swiss this week riding solo of the front on the queen stage. So close… he was caught in the final kilometers of the climb, just a warning shot.
Last couple weeks have been awesome thanks to the hard work of the Sho-Air/Cannondale team and the great support is paying off for all of our team members and we have collectively hit the pay dirt: Max the “mountie” Plaxton scored 7th and 5th in the opening World Cups! Pua came back like Rocky at Bump and Gring to double-up XC and short track!
Our super champion manager Ty Kady showed us how its done with wins in the xc and stxc! Also at Bump and Gring, I had a surprise 1st short track win of the season and nailed it!
Ryan Trebon and I finally worked together and I gave him a podium kiss! Ha ha ha…
I was so excited after the short track I couldn’t sleep. The next day, I was groggy but rode an aggressive cross country race and lead Wells by 10 seconds for several miles after “blood rock” and “Jekyll and Hyde.” Lapped traffic on the course was frustrating and lost me a couple seconds, then it was back together with 2k left!!! My bad line on the last turn cost me! Note: outside line is worth a couple feet in a final sprint. I was 2nd by a tire in the Cross Country! Dang.
Pro XCT Bump n Grind was a fun one nonetheless and a great event hosted by some awesome folks down there in Birmingham.
Massanutten Hoo Ha rings in the summer for me, and was super-cool to win the 25th annual race on a new course and in rain-slick conditions. Nick Waite was flying and, unfortunately for him, flew off the course and landed on some rocks! OUCH!
The ground work has been laid and now its time for some high-intensity, shorter rides and of course some fun new races. I have not been to Wisconsin or Missoula, Montana before, so its going to be a blast to try out both races that receive great reviews.
The crux is here. Time to punch it and put my best races together for the summer’s peak. Stay tuned; you can rest assurured I will be putting the hammer to work and having some fun!
(Check out some more of the great pics on Facebook by team media guru John Muller.)