By Tim Cary
Published 06/08/2023; Updated 06/08/2023

The weather reports were horrible for this day.  The air quality was in the red due to the Canadian wild fires,  as well as grey skies and just conditions that were not motivating.  I signed up the day before, and even though my fitness this year is not where I want it to be, I was looking forward to racing with club friends that I had not seen since before COVID.  I honored my personal commitment and biked over to Hadley in alarming air quality levels and rain that kept spitting down, but, not really amounting to any soaking.

I’ve served as a USAC official on this course in past years, but never raced it.  I had time to do a few preview laps before the start, and I immediately liked the fact that the course is wide and safe.

I counted about 20 starters for the race.  This is a training race, so results are generally informal.  The first five laps we were paced with JAM team members (who remained available for any guidance). On that sixth lap, whomever was at the front did hit the gas for a lap.  The field stayed in touch.

Throughout the race, in general, it was “boring”. (This is a good thing in some ways!)  Everyone stayed together. There really were no breaks.  I remained toward the back of the peloton, however.   With seven laps to go, Charlotte was out on front, and then I took the front after a hard lap by her.  I was hoping to get just a few to come out front, but instead after a tough lap of power, I ended up near the back again.

On the final lap, at the last turn to sprint to finish, things got a bit interesting.  The rider in front of me ran into the (large) gravel, he stayed up, but large stones flew into the pavement, so I backed off and ultimately lost a  place or two at the line. During races, safety is my priority over winning (maybe a reflection of my age?).  In any case, I finished with the group, and did not get lapped, so it was a fun and successful race for me.

I’d like to point out that there were only two female racers in the B, Charlotte and Melissa- whom put in an awesome race effort and also finished with the group (in front of me). Big kudos.  I also want to mention that it was awesome to see the Lellman family come to this race.  Charlotte and Joe raced in the B, and Gus raced in the A.

I had a great time and looking forward to next week!

NCC and our new kits dominated the podium for the B race.


Many thanks to NCC board member Ben Jankowski for organizing this race series.  Next week there will be a junior/beginner clinic before the races start.  The course is very safe and ideal if you’ve never raced a crit. Commit to it here!