Monday, October 6, 2008

From outside the fence

Sunday the kids were up early so we jumped up, got dressed and headed out to our old neighborhood to hit Yates Cider Mill. 2 dozen donuts, some fudge and a gallon of cider later the Pongratz Media Crew was off to Stony Creek to cover the Cycle Cross race held by Paint Creek and Tailwinds.

Okay, down to the good stuff. Upon entering the race paddock we imediately spotted the yellow colors of Team Sub Team Kissel was there in full force to take on the sand filled course. We stopped in to see when they would be racing and moved on so they could go warm up. Next we rolled up on the Red Colors of Team Sandbag. And low and behold there was Masher Media Mike laying his trip wires and camera onto a bike to shoot the race. We ran down John "Like my Shoes?" Osgood to wish him luck and let him know we'd be yelling for him as well. Tried to find Jason "The Ox" Melocosky of RBS but didn't see him until he lined up and didn't want to bother him.

The gun went off and the leaves started to rustle. The pack of C-Class 39 and under riders blew by us like a cool fall breeze. John was in the top 10 and Jason was about mid pack playing Mr Conservative. The next wave of riders were the C-Class 40 and over and Russ was all mixed up in that. He shot by us and rolled himself into a comfortable 5th going off the pavement and onto the course. Next wave was Leila, Dylan and Zoe and their competiton.......the breeze finally calmed and the leaves settled down after all the waves whipped by. Man was it exciting to watch. You could see 85% of the course from where we were standing so the kids were really into it. Plus we got to see all the people we know a few times as they hit all the switchbacks.

I could go on and on......being a XC racer I know what it is like to suffer but this was a different pain I was seeing. Racers were in the red the entire time. No place or time to rest and catch your breath. You slow down to rest and the person behind you will fly right by. You spend the entire race attacking the people in front. And if you are the race leader you spend all your time keeping the hunters at bay.

The 39 and under class came down to a sprint finsih. The experinced racer, Jason Melocosky from RBS, showed the new kid from Team Sandbag how to win a sprint and look good for the camera at the same time. I swear his crank arms were bending as he plowed thru the finishing stretch. During the after race interview he praised racing legend John Osgood from Team Sandbag for helping him acheive his first win. He said even tho he practiced nothing John told him to do it was still the idea of practicing it that helped him thru his race. John Osgood, who finished a solid 4th, was caught later stating, "You know, I taught him everything he knows.....and I beat at Iceman last year by 8 minutes" while in his race trailer making what appearded to be a voodoo doll with a mini RBS jersey on it.'s own Russ Kissel managed to endure the suffering and climbed two more spots to finish 3rd. Later in the day he tried his hand again in the Master's division. He took 11th there in a much more seasoned field against some serious riders.

Zoe crashed during her warm up loops but still raced after some butterfly bandaging by the team medic (mom). She was taken to the hospital later to have it sealed up by a doctor and I we hear she is gdoing good. Bloodied and battered she still finished 2nd in Junior Cat 4 and 1st in female. Brother Dylan took 3rd in Junior Cat 4 and second in male. Way to go guys. It's riders like them who are the future of our team!

Word in the paddock is that Leila was happy she kept the bike upright the entire race. She was all smiles tho and had a great time. In fact one of our hired spy cameras shot this photo of her, she makes it look easy doesn't she?

In the end it was a great event and my family and I were happy to be able to take part from the side lines. In fact that's Ashton in the red hooded sweat shirt in Leila's picture. Hopefully we'll be able to send the Media crew out to cover another CX event this season.

Side bar - for those who on't know we had a rider go down in Brighton over the weekend. Heather "Hollywood" Patterson took a fall hard enough to fracture her shoulder. We are still waiting to see xrays and get the full story. I hear she is supose to have a press onference soon to update the media of her condition.

So as always, check back to see what we'll over next. You never know where the Yellow will go.

(And keep your eyes on that new kid over there at Team Sandbag. Jason is no slouch and that young guy gave him a run for his money. They may be at the start of someone fast.)



  1. Glad you and yours were there! Better race report / description than I could ever write.

    Good Luck Heather! Hope to see you back training soon.

  2. Great write up! Feels like I'm right there on the course again! ...and without all the pain... Hope to see you out there next fall!

  3. Hey gang, the Stony videos are both up on my BLOG and on the web site!

    It was good seeing you again Arron... -or-