Monday, November 23, 2009

The Lion has Teeth!

This year at Shedd Park in Lowell at the BRC cross race they tried to silence the Lion of Lowellenberg....silly fools. Sure they took out the trench and replaced it with a newly built packed gravel footpath with nice drainage. But by making it "safer" and more user friendly they turned a roar into a bite with big nasty fangs that was hungry for bikers bones and bodies. 

Last year you came into the trench made it about 1/4 way through the hub deep mud and were forced to get off the bike and run the last 300 meters. This year the City improved the trail and made it fast! It was a straight and wide foot path that you could get up to warp speed in a nano-second. And in most categories you were in big groups kind of like a road race. 

Ahhh but on to the catch...there was one mud pit the full length of the trail about 10 feet long at about the exit of the section of trail. It had huge gravel ruts that you could ride/surf if you were lucky or end up like this incredible sequence taken by Natasha was utter carnage and dictated the outcome of more than one race...
That mud pit became a game changer in every race contested. I rode it every time except for one spectacular near miss with Nat. I came in hot took the far left rut and then just shot all the way right across the trail heading straight at Natasha who was crouched behind a log shooting. She kinda screamed and ducked for cover as I hit the log and just by force of will took myself out to avoid running over her...later when I went to say sorry she told me she was using her body to protect her camera! My god she is fearless! I also found out that on top of shooting some incredible pictures and posting a great write up for CXmagazine she got 3rd in the 3/4 women's race! Rock on Natasha!

If Lowell keeps building on its nasty reputation it may become the hardman's (and woman's) New England Classic...Did I mention they added a spiral of Death this year? Good times!

This time through the Forest of Lowellenberg I am keeping it all together with Billy Doonan right on my wheel! Man it was good to see him flying around like a man on a mission! What a great race! Thanks Natasha for the excellent photos!


  1. And I thought I was safe once I made it around the loose, loamy 180. Who needs the Spiral of Death when you've got the Ruts of Doom?