April 22, 2009

MASS Season Gets Underway!

Craig Starting the Relay

April 4
The Mountainside Mountainbike Race Team opened the season with mixed results a couple weeks ago at the Marysville Team Relay. This race is a "made for fun" season opener where 4-rider teams do a shortened lap in the set sequence in which they are registered. Each team is handicapped depending on skill and age group level. Lap times ranged from a little over 13 minutes, (Scott Pro Aaron Snyder), to over 20 minutes. The end result is a very hard 15-20 minute effort and then a 45-60 minute wait until you go again.

Mike Funk Hammering

Mountainside Racing fielded 2 teams ... the "A" team made up of Craig Thompson, Janice Morris, Sally McClain, and back for a guest appearance, last year's team member Sarah Lichtenwalner. The team rode strong, completing 13 laps and ended finishing 41st out of 71 teams!

Sally Waiting for Her Turn at the Relay

The second relay team made up of Andy Hoover, Mike Laub, Joel Moats and Mike Funk didn't fair so well. Andy, starting the race, looking to make up for a minor issue the previous year resulting from some over-sized leg warmers that slowed him during the run, (actually stopped him when they were dangling from his feet), was in great shape after the run. Unfortunately, it didn't last long when he was involved in a nasty pile up in the driveway. He gutted out the first lap with what turned out to be badly bruised ribs. Already a lap down, the rest of the team kept racing, finishing 15 laps and ending up 47th after handicaps were applied.


April 19

The team began the day with Janice participating in the Hibernia Duathlon. This race starts with a 2.5 mile run, transitions to a 12 mile bike ride and back to the 2.5 mile run. It turns out this was a little test Janice undertook to determine how well she could transition between the run and the bike. I guess she passed ... look for her representing Mountainside Racing at the Duathlon National Championships in Richmond, VA this Saturday!
After Janice finished the duathlon, she met Craig, Nicole, (Craig's girlfriend), Mike Funk, Joel Moats, me and the rest of the MASS gang at Fair Hill. She does know how to make an entrance ... as we were waiting on the start line, with just a few minutes to go, up the dirt road comes a gray jeep with a pink IF logo on the spare tire cover. Now, one should understand that the dirt road is in the opposite direction of the parking lot that everyone else parked in. It has an entrance from the hardroad. How she got on the dirt road is still a mystery. To get to the parking lot the race organizers had to move the tape marking the race course and there goes Janice across the course right in front of the start line!
As for the race, Craig had a very respectable finish in the highly competitive Senior I Sport class finishing 35th. This was Craig's first true XC race ever, (the relay described above doesn't count), and we're happy to say that he made the right decision to jump right to the Sport category instead of sandbagging the easy beginner class!
Joel and Mike Funk both had good races finishing 7th and 9th respectively in the hotly contested Expert Master I class and Mike Laub finished 21st in a stacked Open Elite group. Results for both events can be found on the MASS website, link:
* All Photos by Don Pagano

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