Thursday, September 25, 2008

Third Cyclocross Race of the Season

It's back to the drawing board with the chain keeper.  The third cyclocross race of the season was CCCX at Fort Ord, California and it was not all it could be.  I know I haven't been a prolific blogger about all the races but the thing with racing is it eats up time.  Bike prep, training, planning, driving, racing, bike cleaning, etc etc.  

The course was fast single track with two road segments and some downhill barriers in the sandy forest of Fort Ord.  Fort Ord is a creepy, mostly boarded up army base that stretches from the dunes of Monterey to the coastal mountain range.  In fact, the course went through some areas that were clearly obstacle courses right out of Full Metal Jacket.  The sandy corners had me putting my foot down supermotard style.  Because I wasn't pedalling and I was in the small cog, chain tension was low and I lost my chain three times.  Once, it hopped right onto the chain keeper and two times, it dropped down to the bottom bracket shell.  I've made another one that will sit closer to the chain and prevent mishaps.  Technique would play a role too.  I should have slowed down before the corner since sliding out clearly wastes energy and continuing to pedal would have helped too.  The picture above shows me shouldering the bike to the finish to the delight of the crowd since that last chain drop occurred right before the final barriers.  Pedal while you brake if it's bumpy to keep that chain tension up, that's the lesson for today kids.

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