US Cup Fayetteville

The US Cup at Fayetteville seems to always be a wild ride. This week is a bit of a “Super Week” for UCI racing in the USA with an XCO C1 race on Wednesday, an XCC C3 race on Friday, and an XCO HC Race on Saturday. Still very early in the season, these races bring a lot of unknowns and Arkansas in the spring time seems to follow suit as well. 

Wednesday XCO:

Wednesday’s XCO was a great chance to test a bit of my resilience early in the season. The Midwest allergies were a battle in and of themselves with pollen flying in the air and covering the hoods of cars. My arms were covered in hives as a let out a couple of sneezes in the start box. As the race unfolded, I didn’t quite feel like myself but I was constantly reminded internally that being the best you can be means performing even on days when you feel less than your absolute best. I dug in and persevered to still manage a 9th place finish in an absolutely stacked field of riders! I think one of the most important lessons to learn as a racer is how to be present and positive even in moments of difficulty, but then leave them behind almost immediately. All eyes were on the rest of the weekend.

(Photo by Bill Schieken/CXHAIRS Media)

Friday XCC:

After a rest day on Thursday and a Claritin in my system, I was once again lined up on Friday for some exciting Short Track racing. I was calm and collected in the first few laps of the race. I swam through the field calmly and methodically like a fish swimming up through a school of fishes. On the end of the 3rd lap, one rider put in an effort and I was the only rider to follow. We sat up through the start/finish, but I took a deep breath knowing that that was a great indicator that my fitness was there on the day. As we entered the course with 2 laps to go, one rider swerved and the entire field responded. I was forced to slam on the brakes and then play catch up to a group that was in full-on attack mode. I made it back to the group just in time for the next major attack, but my match box was pretty well spent. I battled my way to another top 10 finish and crossed the line in 9th.

(Photo by Bill Schieken/CXHAIRS Media)

Saturday XCO:

On Saturday, I once again started the race full of optimism and ready to battle with everything I had. I took a slightly more paced approach and as we crossed through half-way I took a deep breath as I prepared to dig in and make my move. My cheering sections were screaming that the girls in front of me were starting to fade and I smiled within knowing that my plan was working out quite perfectly. Then, all of a sudden, one spectator yelled, “This is the last lap!” What? How could that be? I was just getting going and making my move! Due to lightning in the area, they had to cut the race 2 laps short. 2 of 6 laps is 1/3 of the race! All of a sudden, we were in a full-on sprint to the finish and I didn’t have the time I planned to make my moves. I crossed the line in 8th with another reminder of just how crazy this sport can be and how you truly have to be ready to adapt to any and all circumstances!

(Photo by Bill Schieken/CXHAIRS Media)

Up Next:

Now we continue to wild racing block as I head straight from Arkansas to a busy and exciting week in California at the Sea Otter Classic for the first Lifetime Grand Prix race of the season. 

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