Erie Time Trial

For some 25 years now, the Fall Erie Time Trial has marked the traditional end of the ROAD season.

Unfortunately, this year only Ray Sielski and Steve Marlette were in attendance... WELL REPRESENTING the team up north!

Here is X-Ray's Story:
Presque Isle Erie PA, Sunday September 9, 2012 ...

...also know as Ray and Diane's 34th wedding anniversary! To celebrate this wonderful occasion Diane decide to upgrade to super fan status by joining the team at the races. 

A 5:00 am wake up call couldn't come early enough as anticipation for the year ending event was building throughout the weekend. Rain, cold and wind was threatening the lake Erie shores. The early morning drive was wet and windy, while visible bands of rain and clouds were seen through out the Northeast.

Ray joined fellow Ag3r teammate Steve Marlette, and after a warm up and discussion of race tactics set out for the starting line. At that particular moment the rain stopped, and with the sun cresting came the final countdown... 04 ..03 ..02 ..01 ..GO!

I set out on the course in wet and puddle conditions, carefully watching the corners and bumps on the road trying to beat the next band of wind and rain.  Luckily, there were no real head wind and less tailwind on course.

In the end, I finished in 38th Place Overall with a new Personal Record of 31:28, and in 10th Place of the Men's 50+ Division.  This was my 4th P.R. of the season, at distances of 5 miles, 10 miles, 12.5 miles and 20 miles.  A great year!

Steve, impressive as always, finished in 11th Place Overall with a time of 28:18, and in 4th Place of the Men's 40+ Division.

Race complete the rain moved in and all was back to normal in Erie, PA.  Post race beer and sandwiches were good, somewhat lacking without my usual escorts....but the anniversary lunch company was plenty good enough....right honey?!!!


Cascade Park

Kirk Morrison headed into Ohio for the NEOCX (North East Ohio CycloCross Series) race at Cascade Park in Elyria, Ohio.

Trying to make his drive worthwhile, and just because THAT is the kind of guy he is, Kirk-Kirk DOUBLED-up on the day!

Single Speed Open - 8th Place

Men's B (Geared) Open - 11th Place 

Yes....this man is not only insatiable, he has a split personality too :)

Strong Man-Land?

After racing Cross-Pocolypse on Friday night, Mike Maher proceeded to race in the Strongland Mtn Bike race on Saturday, then in the Strongland Road Race on Sunday.

After all was said and done, all he could say was, "Maybe 4 races in 3 days is too much(?)"...!!!

Mike Maher -
Strongland MTB II: 3rd Place Overall / 2nd Place Masters
Strongland Road Race II: 10th Place Overall

Hannah Brewer also headed to Strongland for HER third race of the weekend (!), and her first road race of the season... and faired quite well.  See for yourself:

Looks like the Strong-Man has competition from a VERY STRONG Woman :)



Double Cross V - Crosspocolypse, turned out to be a dry event (from the sky) but a very wet event (from the icy coolers!!!)

...which has a lot to do with why riders keep coming back year after year, despite being (apparently) homeless otherwsie!
Jim Miller

In fact, some arrived and set up camp DAYS in advance...
Kirk Morrison & Ray Sielski

....and when questioned why they were there so soon, could only shrug their shoulders and say, "WHY NOT?"!!!
Mark Briercheck

At the START for Race #1, Mike Maher (race promoter/host) got everyone organized...

....while 2011 Reigning Double Cross Champion Ray (#1) Sielski waited calmly to the side.
Thanks Ray, for making these SWEET Race Numbers!

Hannah Brewer, fresh off her 24 hour Champion Challenge of Seven Springs race win, sporting the CHAMPIONS jersey, was just happy to be racing in dry (trail) conditions!

Others, like Mark "The Reeper" Briercheck, were not in as good of "worldly" spirits!

Each lap, riders had to face various obsticles, both during the "day"...
Steve Brewer

...and at night.
Hannah Brewer

And while some "challenges" seemed excessivly difficult...

...they were made worth while by the IMMEDIATE (and forced) reward for overcoming them!

After the 2nd Race of the night was complete, having taken place completely in the dark...
Kirk Morrison
Mike Maher

...everyone was treated to fireworks!!!

...and to Kirk's mondolin playing  :)

As usual, pictures of ME are scarce!

Henry Dimmick, photo by The Happy Trout!

By design, this race party LIGHTS UP the beginning of our CycloCross season.

Stay Tuned  :)


Henry Clay 30K

Story by Kirk Morrison
Rich Allen & I headed down to Coopers Rock State Park (outside Morgantown, WV) to race in the 25th edition of the Henry Clay 30K mountain bike race. Last year’s Henry Clay 30K was my first WVMBA race and I was struck by the beauty of this park as well as the fun (and challenging) trails. After spending this summer trying to develop some mountain bike skills, I was excited to head back down for this year’s 25th anniversary race.

The weather was good with dry trail conditions, partly sunny skies and temperatures in the mid 80’s. The course changed from last year so that (instead of riding one big loop) we rode an 8 mile loop with 2 laps for Sport and 3 laps for Expert. Sunday’s course was rocky but fast with almost no muddy sections. Thankfully, Richy and I both rode with no major mechanical issues.

At the end of the day Richy finished in 3rd place in a very competitive Sport Grand Masters (55+) group. Richy’s finishing time was only 65 seconds behind the 1st place winner of his class and 17 seconds behind the 2nd place finisher !

I ended up finishing in 4th place in the Sport Masters (45+) group.

Gunnar and Betsy Shogren organized this race (along with many great volunteers) and did an excellent job. The course was in super shape with clear arrow markings and plenty of cheering spectators. After race festivities includes pizza, soda’s and even Nutty Bars ! This remains as one of my favorite Mtb races …. Highly recommended !





24 hr Champion Challenge

Hannah Brewer was DRAFTED (loaned!) to ride as the bestest-looking member of a Coed Sport Division team named ESI 2.0 in the 24 hour Champion Challenge mountain bike race at Seven Springs Resort in Champion, Pa.

HERE is her story!

Last weekend I competed in my first, and not last, 24 hour race.

Undoubtedly the only reason I agreed to do this race was because I didn't have time to think about it. Any rational thought would have reminded me that I have never ridden in the woods at night, haven't been camping since I was 16, and prefer to be in bed by 9PM on weekends. I wasn't prepared for this, but since I have this eccentric gene that makes me do reckless things, I said yes. The ESI teammies were so accommodating already that I assumed I would be in good hands.  The boys agreed that I didn't have to do any night laps, and that they would only expect me to do the 2 minimum laps required per rider. So, I was IN.

I started packing and talking to Ag3r teammates Henry Dimmick and Mike Maher about "what to expect" and "what to pack." Both were extremely helpful; Henry made sure I had everything I needed for the weekend, and yes, Henry thinks about EVERYTHING. Mike took Steven (Brewer) and I out to pre-ride the course and talked me into doing a night lap. Yes, I am stupid enough to accept (and often agree with) Mike's advice. I went back and told my ESI teammates that I was prepared for night laps. (Lie: I wasn't prepared, I just wanted to do one!)

I was the first to ride for our 5-person co-ed team. The run around the lake was just as everyone said it would be: sucky (and too long to run in MTB cleats). I felt great on both the run and the ride of my first lap. The course was dry, and completely ride-able. My lap time + run time was 1:37:07. I was pleased with my time since the course was almost 14 miles. We were in third after the first lap, but not bad considering no other co-ed teams had sent their girl out yet!

The ESI boys all rode very well, despite one flat and one stripped pedal. We quickly moved into 1st place, and all worked hard to keep our nice lead.

My second lap started at 7:45PM, so my lights were ready and I did 80% of this lap in the dark. Unfortunately, it POURED for this lap. The rain was so heavy it was hard to see because of the fog coming off of my light. I blindly bombed down hills with no care in the world and tried to stay focused on the trail in front of me. Who talked me into night laps again?!?!?  I finished my first night lap in 1:49:13. I felt great crossing the finish line. Nothing is more empowering than riding alone through the dark rainy woods with nothing but your bike, your light, and a prayer that they won't let you down!

I washed up as best as I could, and got in my partially damp tent for a much needed 3 hours of sleep. The ESI guys tuned up my bike between laps and made sure my lights were ready to go. Anita and Tracey, ESI wives/girlfriends/support crew made grilled chicken, pancakes, rice, and anything else we needed to stay fueled. Thanks to these ladies, camping wasn't so bad after all!

I woke up in the dark for my 3rd and final lap, and made my way to the transition zone. Josh, one of the ESI riders was surprised to see me up and said "you don't have to do another night lap." But I was ready to ride! I was tired and disoriented, but energized since this would be my last lap and because the sun would be coming up at some point during my ride. The sunrise lap really is the best lap, even on a cloudy day. The course was a mudfest, and actually the mud was thicker and slicker than it was during the torrential downpours I rode in 5 hours ago. I finished this lap in 1:53:06.

Overall, I was pleased with my lap times, and enjoyed riding and being part of this exciting event. The best part of the day was when the rider that finished next to me on the first lap said "boy, you really have a lot of people cheering for you!!" And he was right. The support from the crowd and other riders was motivating and appreciated.

It was a winning weekend in every way! Team ESI 2.0 won 1st Place for the co-ed 5 person (combined age of 125-175).

We got a champion jersey, medal, hooded green Seven Springs sweatshirt, and some other bike-related goodies.

Its great to know that I have friends outside of my Ag3r teammates that I can depend on and ride with.

Check out our results at:

Rider 1: Hannah Brewer
Rider 2: Eric Shick
Rider 3: Brad Bowser
Rider 4: Josh Shirley
Rider 5: Ben Edwards

THANK YOU ESI riders for adopting me for the weekend.  And I am happy to say, I am not a runner or a triathlete, I am a mountain biker :)

Reservoir Dogs

The beginning of one of the best descents around Boulder...
...dropping-IN from "Ned"!


Yellow Creek MTB

Story by Hannah Brewer:
The August Yellow Creek course was a new course, and included the best of the north and south shore.

Its always fun to ride a new course, and the route was a great combination of fast singletrack and rock gardens. My big accomplishment of the day was making it up Soul Sucker Climb for the first time ever.

I also got to wear the GREEN Winner's Jacket...

...and won a PEACH PIE :)

The peach pie didn't last long -- but this time, the quickly dissapering pie WASN'T all Steve's fault!

It was delicious :)

I finished in 1st Place for the Women, and 13th Place Overall.

PS - I still can't catch Ag3r's Dirty Mike Maher, who finished in 12th Place Overall...!!!