Shelby Farms – Memphis, TN – October 19th
Richie Slagle and I finished in the top of the field at the first Crossroads Clash A race hosted by 901 Racing at Shelby Farms this past weekend. It was overcast, cold and rained that morning, but actually ended up being a good day of racing. The course was very typical, composed of thick grass, sharp corners, five man-made barriers, and a short road section across the parking lot without any sand or mountain bike trails.
There was a “Le Mans Start” which is when racers line up away from their bike, then run to their bike and take off. Richie got off to a great start being a strong runner and training for an upcoming 40k race. Matt Joiner (riding for Marx-Bensdorf) and I rode together making our way through the field and back up to him somewhere in the first couple of laps overcoming several riders. The three of us settled in and rode together for several laps. Matt and I rode up a little from Richie before I slid out on an off-camber wet, grassy corner and dropped my chain. Before I got my chain back on, Richie came by and I spent the next lap riding back up to him before I could sit on his wheel and catch my breath.
Matt developed a gap on the two of us being super smooth with each obstacle. After sitting in for a while on Richie’s wheel, I was able to ride back up to Matt. He was riding strong but later said he hit a wall as this was only his second cross race of the season. The three of us continued reeling in riders including Kevin Conerly (a Pro/1/2), but after that it was hard to differentiate who we were reeling in and who we were lapping. I knew that Seth Rider, Jonathan Brown, Boomer Leopold, and John King were in front of us, but not if anyone else was between us and these top 4. Results weren’t posted until Tuesday, and I was pleased to discover that I did take 5th overall in the A race winning the Cx 4 subcategory! Matt took 6th placing second in the Cx 3 (behind Jonathan Brown) and teammate Richie Slagle 7th overall making the podium at 3rd in the Cx 3 subcategory.
by Patrick Andre