USA Supercup Round 4 - Cat. 3

Chicago, November 13, 1999

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The tyanny of distance

By Geoff Proctor

Just after college and long before I started bike racing, I spent two years working my way completely around the world, making just enough money at one job to get to the next. At one point, when funds were low, I found myself faced with the somewhat daunting task of hitchhiking - Perth to Sydney -across Australia. Replays of towns like Kalgoorlie, Coolgardie and Broken Hill (whose soul sister city surely lies here in Montana in the form of a city we call Butte), road stations like Cocklebiddy and Nullarbor (literally "no trees" in Latin) and recollections of riding huge trucks across vast tracts of real estate still readily roll off the tongue of my memory. It was on this leg of my trip that I learned of the tyranny of distance while reading Geoffrey Blainey's book of the same title.

There's always destination, whether you're hitching or pedaling, and there's always distance keeping you from getting there. Sometimes it's a few headwind-blasting meters. Other times it's a few thousand miles. Still other times it's all in your mind. Every time though, fulfillment, the taming of the tyranny, comes when you can merge the two, when wisdom and journey become one.

Urban city cyclocross, a.k.a. Chicago Super Cup #4, came off with an exuberance that has come to define the Super Cup series. Highly competitive racers and zealous crowds, all worked into a literal lather by some of the best public announcers (Richard Fries and Chris Zigmont) in professional sports. Unique to Chicago was the extremely flat, no run-up course teeming with first time fans (many of whom were children) flashing course marker flags and urban fishermen, fixated at their favorite spots, wondering what the hell grabbed their gig on this Saturday afternoon.

I've never raced a 'cross race where I didn't have to shoulder the bike. But where the terrain might have disappointed, the riders didn't. It was a tactical blitzkrieg from the get-go. On the first turn off the pavement, eventual winner Steve Larsen (LL Bean/ Mongoose) and I both got hung up trying to dodge the trajectory of masters world mtb champ Steve Tilford's curiously catapulting front wheel. Then it was settle in with second group and try to make contact with the first. Tantalizingly close, the gap small, the game begun. All according to plan.

Larsen made it; I didn't. In a flash I got into some handlebar high-jinx with a guy on the wood-chipped back section. Hitting the turf in harmless frustration, I picked myself up and entered the long "haul-back" mode.

Forget the past, shield out the incorrigible distance ahead of you, stay with the moment, and let the stalking begin. And get some help. In no man's land for virtually the entire race, local rider Mark Vandermolen (Turin) and I traded pulls and encouraging plugs. Draft and jam, transition and punch, we fought gap's ugly head with all chambers firing. Picking off blown riders, we made contact with the second group with a half a lap to go. Attacking directly, I got by a few guys, but younger legs were fresher over the six barrier combo and 18th place was all I could muster.

The game up front had been similar with riders popping off the front group all day long only to be brought back, distance and destination doing their unchoreographed dance. Heavy hitters Gullickson (Boulder Denver Couriers), Bowen (Saturn) and Larsen and up-and-comers Candelario (Boulder Denver Couriers), Bachleda (Boulder Denver Couriers), and Robinson (Vos Dos) were all names I heard leading the battle royale.

The larger destination of course is to get home after the show. Wherever it is you call home, doing weekend races by air and the workweek by haywire is pretty buggering. Aside from the guys driving the timing truck and a few mechanics on wheels, all of the racers and race series staff are doing "in and outs" across the board. For those of us work-a-day types, to unpack the second bike after a trip is time you simply don't have. With the impending West Coast swing of the series, the New England based race crew will now be doing weekly cross-countries. Can you say Boston, New York, Boulder, Chicago, Seattle, Portland, and San Francisco in a two-month span? Tyranny!

Or so I thought. Scrambling to get my prize money, to get back to the hotel, to get my bikes broken down and packed, to get some food in me, to get showered, to get to O'Hare. I ran into an impressed Robert Garbutt, editor of the Britain's Cycling Weekly. He was scrambling too. Only he was heading back to another continent!

The things we do for an hour-long race. An hour of dancing on the pedals. At American cyclocross' big dance.


Elite Men

1 Stephen Larsen (LL Bean/Mongoose)		1.06.40
2 Marc Gullickson (VOO DOO Boulder)		   0.18
3 Bart Bowen (Saturn) 				   0.19
4 Vojto Bachleda (Boulder Bee)			   0.34
5 Alex Candelaro (Boulder/Denver Racer)		   0.35
6 Justin Robinson (Vos Dos)			   0.36
7 Ken Helgeson (US Air Force, IF)		   0.44 
8 Johannes Huseby (Indy Fabrication)		   0.53
9 David Wyaudt (Palo Alto / Kestuel)		   0.58
10 Damon Kluck (Real Wheel/Voo Doo)		   0.59
11 Ryan O' Connor 				   2.24
12 Brent Prenzlow (Bonafide-TCB)		   2.35
13 Jed Scheckler (CBC)				   2.56
14 Adam Hodges Myerson (Northampton CC)		   3.10
15 Christian McCarthy Boulder Denver Couriers
16 Bill Elliston Bicycle Therapy		
17 Andrew Sargent Alberto's Sport 		
18 Geoff Proctor Strong Racing-MT Velo		   3.20
19 Gregory Ferguson Trek VW East		
20 Justin Thompson 				
21 Mark Vandermolen Team Turin		
22 Steve Meek 			 		   3.49
23 Dewey Dickey 				   4.07
24 Chris Fabri 			       		   4.18
25 Jason Pink (Signaz/Schwinn 	      		   4.25
26 Scott Quiring 			           4.39
27 Michael Yazell (Trek East coast Factor)	   6.23
28 Fred Feirn 					   6.23
29 Dale Sedwick (UCC Now Sports)		   5.28
30 Jeff Weinert 				   5.36
31 Kurt Begemann (Gary Fisher SAAB)		   5.52
32 Hugh Wallace (BBC)				   6.06
33 JD Bilodeau (Team Douglas)			   6.22
34 Kurt Gensheimer (Mongoose Saturn)		   6.29
35 Earendel Fingerson				   6.39
36 John Dapkus (Team Turin)			   6.45
37 Ryan Pinkham (CornerCycle)			   6.50
38 Jeremy Braziel (I.F.)			   7.20

Elite Women

1 Anne Grande (Red Line Racing)			  45.41
2 Christina Redden 				   0.09
3 Carmen Richardson (Sobe HeadShok)		   0.15
4 Kathi Riggert (Independent Fabrications) 	   0.27
5 Jen Dial (Independent Fabrications)		   0.41
6 Katie Blincoe (Redline)			   0.48
7 Emily Thorne (ECVC)				   0.49
8 Christina Begy (Independent Fabrication)	   2.48
9 Christine Vardaros (Aegis, Jamba Juice)	   2.49
10 Jody Koch					   2.58
11 Lisa Matlock					   4.00
12 Julie Bultman (AAVC)				   4.16
13 Lora Heckman					   4.24
14 Shari Halisbeck				   4.43
15 Sheila Senft (Pro Copy/Campus Cyclery)	   5.02
16 Megan Elliott (AbD cycling)			   6.37
17 Beckie Fuller				   7.22
18 Rebecca Milan 				   1 lap
19 Francine Chavez				  
20 Nancy Kaymen (Team Turin Waterford)		  


1 Damon Kluck (Real Wheel/Voo Doo) 		1.07.35
2 Jed Sheckler (Valley / GT) 			   2.01
3 Hugh Wallace (BBC) 				   5.11
4 Kurt Geusheimer   				   5.34
5 Earendel Fingerson   				   5.44
6 Kurt Rees 					   1 lap 
7 Kevin Hankens (Iowa City Spoke Honda)
8 Tood Shoberg 					   
9 Frank Dierking 				   
10 Chris McNeil 				   
11 Ryan Pinkham 				   
12 Daniel Siever (Club Biccletta) 		   
13 Colin Threinen (Flanders)			   
14 Brian Mohrlant (Team Metric)	 		   
15 Chris Hill 					   

Junior Men

1 Justin Thompson 				  43.51	
2 Dameion Donias (Redline Tacoma WA) 		   0.01  
3 Craig Lipka   				   1.23  
4 Toby Swauson   				   1.48  
5 Jeremy Powers   				   1.51  
6 Earendel Fingerson   				   1.52  
7 Aaron Menenberg (Rad Racing) 			   3.22  
8 Dan Bowman   					   3.39  
9 ? ?						   3.44  
10 Barrett Zoltai 				   5.14  
11 Campos-Moya Leonardo 			   1 lap 
12 Kris Kutler 					   


1 Kenneth Smith 				  41.45
2 Paul Curley (Team Gearworks Taunton MA) 	   0.01
3 Rob Meighan   	
4 Tim Rutledge (Redline Seattle WA)
5 John Meyers   			    	   0.31     
6 Tom Stephens   			    	   1.40     
7 Chris D'Alviso 			    	   1.53     
8 Jerry Meyers   			    	   2.04     
9 David Blackburn   			    	   2.56     
10 Eric Toth   					   2.56
11 John Weyhrich (Five Valley Velo Missoula MT)    3.29
12 Robert Rozman   				   3.54
13 Steve Gaynee   	
14 Darrell Bratton (Team Mack Racing, Inc. Quincy IL) 		
15 Peter Robertson   		
16 Jeffiey Appletons   				   4.15      
17 James Real   				   4.50      
18 Bruce Nelson   				   4.53      
19 Jeff Johnson   				   5.18      
20 Bill Duning (Wolvering Cycling Ferndale MI) 	   5.19
21 Robert Knutson   				   5.55
22 Michael Seamen (Mt. Pleasant MI) 		   6.05
23 Herb Case   		
24 Skit Higgins   				   6.21
25 Michael Ozment (Team Mack Savoy IL) 		   6.57
26 Ed Reed   					   6.58
27 Lavery Michaez   				   8.55
28 Peter Duthie   				   9.02


1 Kurt Rees 					  43.26
2 Joseph Tramontano (Bryant College) 		   0.33
3 LeRoy Popowski   				   5.04
4 Joel Slezak (Loyola University) 		   5.11
5 Douglas Whyte (University of Iowa) 		   7.24

B Men

1 Samuel Moore 				     	  44.38    
2 Nathan Perkins   			     	   0.12    
3 Jay Thomas   				     	   0.18    
4 ???? 					     	   0.22    
5 Josh Peterson   			   
6 John Wieda   				     	   0.49    
7 Andrew Gregg   			     	   0.51    
8 Erick Marcheschi   			     	   1.14    
9 Rick Stephens (Lake Cycling, Chicago) 	   1.31
10 Frey Andrew   				   1.36
11 Rod Schrauk   				   1.37
12 Matt Runfola   				   1.38
13 Tim Boundy   				   1.39
14 Chris Bamsey   				   2.00
15 Jason Weland   				   2.01
16 Mark Harris (Northbrook Bicycle Club)	   2.02
17 P.C. Randolph 				   2.10
18 Jerremy Walker   				   2.19
19 Jamson Hendlee   				   2.38
20 Brooke Flirio   				   3.00
21 Hay Wallace   				   3.01
22 Brian Tober   				   3.07
23 Jim Nowak   					
24 Luke Landis   				   3.15
25 Mark Olson   				   3.23
26 Brian Nilsson   				   3.24
27 Cory Gross   				   3.28
28 Steve Forss   				   3.37
29 Brian Haas   				   3.38
30 Sean Peotter   				   3.59
31 Scott Saees   			
32 James Michael   				   4.21
33 Brad Dash   					   4.49
34 Chris Hammer   			
35 Jason McCormick   				   4.51
36 Peter Cline   				   5.22
37 Bryan Obermeyer   				   5.30
38 Michael Grinney   				
39 Marcus Moore   				
40 John Wrycza   				
41 Bryan Jew   					
42 Jonathan Jeuseu   				
43 Chris Muller   				
44 Mark Boufford   				


1 Greg Blake 
2 Tim Hotchkiss 
3 Nathan Vandenbroek (Grand Rapids)
4 John Mahr (Wheelfast Racing, Chicago)
5 William Onderr
6 Rodney Anderson 
7 Nicholas Jackson 
8 Jack Vinson 
9 Justin Leppanen 
10 Paul Rosenblum 
11 Jason Culbepper 
12 Robert Sliwinski 
13 Parren Monico 
14 Richard Kryszak 
15 Kedron Nelson 
16 Krumholz Gary 
17 Joseph Fulton 
18 Robert Wislow 
19 Paul Michael 
20 Christine Cunningham 
21 Jennifer McGee 
22 Derrick Owens 
23 Anne Barnes 
24 Lisa Bourazak 
25 Terry Veriezia 
26 Jeremy Hudson 
27 Lauren Strickler 
28 Phillip Straight 
29 Darnell Straight 


1 Avery Colomb