El Dorado Hills Cyclocross
13 October 2012
Ellen Sherrill (Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster) took the win for Elite Women after Emily Kachorek (TBB.CX) ran afoul with a flat, whilst leading the race. In the race for Elite Men, Max Jenkins (Folsom Bikes) wore down the field and rode home for a comfortable victory.
Today was the First Annual El Dorado Hills Cyclocross meeting and many racers had praise for the course. The common retort was “there was a little bit of everything” with a sand pit, hill, technical sections, and long straights. The differing terrain included fire road, compacted dirt, loose dirt, and tree roots. Set amongst a former golf course, racers had to contend with power-sucking grass and a bunker whose racing line changed from lap-to-lap.
At the top of the hill on the first lap, Sherrill was in first place, putting in a fast pace, and had managed a good lead over Kachorek. However, by the end of that lap, it was wheel-to-wheel and the pair exchanged positions throughout the second lap.
“I don’t know what her bike handling skills are like so I started faster,” reported Sherrill, “I think I put a bit of a space on her at the first boards, I didn’t see how she was running the boards, or maybe I was opening it up with complete lack of fear and caution on the downhill fire road.”
“I [had] my tire pressure set nice and low and I know how fast I can go down,” continued Sherrill, “[Kachorek] made up [the gap] in no time flat on the power section of the course…going into a headwind. She came around me in the grass. I rode closely behind her and then she ‘gapped’ me on the hill.”
Cresting the hill on lap three, Kachorek suffered a flat; without a spare wheel, the mechanical was an unfortunate end to her race. With a small field of four racers, the hope going in was for Sherrill and Kachorek to contest for first place. Sherrill said she was very disappointed to see Kachorek out of the race. “I didn’t know if I’d be able to make up that gap [to Kachorek],” said Sherrill, “I was going to monitor but then I didn’t have very long to wait until something happened to her.”
The 11-racer Elite Men’s field got underway with the Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster riders of Dean Poshard and Andrew Juiliano reaching the sand trap first. Over the next few laps, Jared Kessler (Folsom Bike), Max Jenkins (Folsom Bike), and James Williams (Adventure’s Edge) gradually took charge of the race.
Eventually Jenkins used his road skills to put a gap on Kessler and Williams using the flatter portions of the track. The strategy worked as his lead became commanding. Toward the end of the race, Kessler was able to break away from Williams and looked for a short while as he may put in an attempt to bridge up to Jenkins.
Kessler was racing with a handicap, however, with only two gears on his bike. With that disadvantage, putting a gap on Williams was only to secure second place. For Williams, his misinterpretation of Kessler’s gears lead him to believe he could go nolo contendere against a “singlespeed” racer. In letting Kessler go, Williams consigned himself to third place.
1. Ellen Sherrill (Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster)
2. Katie Jay Melena (Bicycle Bluebook/HRS/Rock Lobster)
3. Vicky Sama (Adventures Edge)
1. Max Jenkins (Folsom Bike)
2. Jared Kessler (Folsom Bike)
3. James Williams (Adventure’s Edge)
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