Wente Road Race

April 24, 2006

by Denise

I raced with the 45+ and Cat 4/35+. I being in the Cat 4 section, was a bit intimidated with all of these highly experienced girls around me.

We rolled out in a nice tight group and I knew we were hitting that hill/feeedzone soon, so I needed to stay in front. That hill was a bit steeper than I recall. Linda, who was racing in the 45+ category told me to stay on her wheel and to only look at her wheel.

Sure enough, she got me to the top lickity split. If it were not for her, I would’ve slipped off into the hill abyss. THANXS Linda! Cheryl from Left Coast, Pennie from Le Feminine Peleton and I worked together nicely from there on.

Cheryl was the hill climber of our group andkept that screaming pace towards the finish. I tried to get just a millimeter ahead of her, to no avail. I have no idea of where I placed, though I am thinking 10’ish. We waited for 45 minutes for the results to be posted and the shivering took over, so we headed back.

I really like that course and it was so terrific to see all of those Bellas at the finish line.

Photo is from RonaldMariano.com , visit his site for some great shots of the Wente Road Race

Wente Crit not a race report

April 24, 2006

by Soni

I am not writing a race report because that honor goes to Heidi, who won the 4s race at the Wente Crit, but I had to say a few words about it.

This is an awesome team! The women’s 45+ raced with the women’s 4s which isn’t what I would normally consider a good situation for either group. But Liz & Monica, who raced earlier with the 1/2/Pro field, decided to help me and Heidi in our 4s race. They kept their eyes on where we were, told us when we should make moves and such, and helped move us around.

Monica took a huge pull, maybe 3 laps at the end with Heidi and I on her wheel that kept the race safe, kept us in good position, made the team look totally studly for the spectators, and helped Heidi get into position for a superduper sprint to win!

I really valued racing with them–usually when I race with the 2s, we aren’treally racing ‘together’ so this was a pretty special opportunity.
Thanks gals!!!

Wente Crit Race Report

April 24, 2006

By Heidi

We had Monica, Liz B, Soni and I out there in a field of 35-40 riders. These gals are my heroes- they raced hard on Saturday, raced in the Cat 1,2,3 race earlier, then came out and worked for Soni and I.

We did a pretty good job sticking together, and whenever I found myself sliding back in the field, there was Liz or Monica ready to pull me back up to the front. Sonny and I tried to watch out for each other and stay out of the nasty wind as much as possible.

This was a sketchy course, lots of room for crazy moves and crashes happening in all of the races throughout the day. With about 5 laps to go, Monica took a monster pull up to the front, and kept Soni and I out of the dangerous pack.

Monica deserves a medal for her hard work- she kept us at the front all the way to the bell lap, and into the second to last turn. It was incredible! We had a beautiful bella train going round and round. I swear I had this sh*t eating grin on my face the whole time.

I was able to catch a good wheel going into the last corner sitting in third position. I sprinted waay early, and was glad that I hit the line when I did…. It was a fun win, and I am so happy to have teammates like these gals.

Numero Uno

April 20, 2006

And this just in from the IronDad in Texas…

So far this year Kiersten Inserni has won every event she has entered, and along with being crowned, for her age group, the Texas Cyclocross State Champion, the Texas Mountain Bike State Champion and (again) achieving a #1 national ranking by NORBA, she can now add the impressive achievement of being the #1 ranked Duathlete (run/bike/run) in the South Midwest Region by USA Triathlon to her impressive palmares! Even more impressive is that according to USA Triathlon she is also the #1 ranked duathlete in the nation, but since the national rankings won’t be released until July 1st it’s unofficial until then.

Keep on rockin’ it Kiersten!

April 18

April 20, 2006

Opus Criterium, MN
2nd, Lieselot Decroix, Women

Crackandpopulis- Women 1/2 report

April 20, 2006

by Monica

Or as the ncnca calls it Copperopolis.

I raced this for the first time last year and it kicked my #^*! This year wasn’t any different. Once again, the race did me in. I don’t know if it was the stressful work week going into the race, the lousy warm up, complicated with messing around with my barrel adjuster (I was having shifting issues), not enough food, bad legs or hey, maybe all of this. Probably the latter, anyway here’s my report.

We had 30 or so on the starting line. Teams with multiple riders were McGuire, Touchstone and the newly formed Proman/Whole Athlete. There were smatterings of the usual suspects, Cynthia Momsen & Jane Despas to name a few.

The first time up the climb the group narrowed to about 20. At the top, as we neared the lake the attacks began. Touchstone went first, followed by Mcguire, Touchstone, Mcguire, Touchstone….you get the picture. This continued into that vicious little climb before the descent. There was a lot of fighting to get near the front for the descent as everyone wanted to choose the line down that bumpy, twisty, narrow road. I found myself sitting about 7th wheel going down, which worked out all right.

I hoped to eat, drink and recover a bit as we came near the starting line but this never happened. The attacks started all over again. No time to really grab a Gu or drink much. I made the fatal mistake of not taking any feed while passing thru the feedzone. We hit the climb the second time & the true climbers put the hurt on. The group started scattering. I found myself falling back, fighting my best to get back on. We were breaking apart into groups of 4 or 6 as we got closer & closer to the top. Cynthia Momsen & I were the last to fall off but as we were close to cresting the summit, Cindy got back on and I didn’t. Damn! I was toast. My head kept telling me – they’re only 20m in front of you – c’mon get up there! I did the whole mental thing of trying to catch on but my legs just couldn’t go.

So, I suffered like a pig! All alone for the remainder of the race. I tried to drink but I didn’t have hardly any fluid. I tried to eat, munched on a Clif bar, swallowed some Gu but by this time it was too late. I had a headache and I was in trouble. Somehow I convinced myself that I wasn’t going to quit so I continued this torture to the finish line. At one point I saw a Mcguire rider up ahead who’d fallen off the group but other than that I never saw any other chicks, in front or behind me.

I got back to my car, ate a PB & J, drank my Endurox and headed home ASAP. I called David to talk to me as I wasn’t sure I’d make it. I was in bad shape. Its taken me until afternoon today to feel like I recovered. Disappointed, hell yes! I was hoping for a little better time this year but……my threshold of pain’s reached a whole new level. In the end, I think I finished about 18th or maybe last, or maybe both, a lot of people DNF this race.

Can’t wait for Wente!

Photo is from Abbiorca.com , visit their site for some great photos of Copperopolis.

Surf City CX Series, yeah mon!

April 19, 2006

Surf City will be back in 2006!
Here are a couple of prelim dates to tease you with:
October 15th, 2006 – Soquel High (tentative)
October 29, 2006 – Watsonville Fairgrounds
November, 12, 2006 – tba
We’re still scouting out locations, so more on that when we know.
In the meantime, dream about cross, it will be here before you know it.

Our popular cyclocross clinics will be held at course locations on the Saturday before the first two events.

October 14th, 2006 – Soquel High (tentative)
October 28th, 2006 – Watsonville Fairgrounds

Surf City Cyclcross is a fundraiser for the Velo Bella Elite Cyclocross team. Thank you for your support of our team. In addition to cyclocross team funding, this year we are also donating $2/entry at each race to local charities and groups. Donees for each race are as follows:

October 15th, 2006 – Janel Lodge Medical Fund
October 29th, 2006 – Shared Adventures
November 12th, 2006 – Second Harvest Food Bank

April 15

April 18, 2006

Copperopolis Road Race, CA
18th, Monica Neilson, Women 1/2/Pro
5th, Patricia Selbicky, Women 3
11th, Soni Andreini Poulsen, Women 4
3rd, Elizabeth Benishin, Women 30+
8th, Sabine Dukes, Women 30+

Menlo Park Grand Prix, CA
1st, Heidi Horton, Women 4
4th, Denise Ramirez, Women 4 35+

Tahuya Seabeck Tahuya Road Race, WA
3rd, Kele Murdin, Women

Helena Primavera RR Bunnies

April 17, 2006

by Tina

“Oh what a beautiful morning, oh what a beautiful day…”

It was de-gorgeous outside.

As I wheeled my bike out of the hotel, a lady made the comment that I definitely picked the right day to ride my bike… Unlike the snow that I’m now looking at outside my window in the office… bluch! Although, the trees I planted are very very happy at the moment.

Anyway, I digress… We sported two Bella ladies, Zoe and me. And seeing that it was the day before Easter, I had to sport some appropriate flair…There were 15 women in our field and ALL Cat 4s… There were entire teams, 5 from Helena, 4 (I think) from University of Montana, 3 fromGAS (hee hee)…It was awesome to see so many ladies out!

The Helena RR is a mostly flat 40-miler, with wind and depending on which lap you’re on, it could be a cross, or a head, or a tail… or flat out blow you off the road! You really could never tell. After a somewhat painful experience teaching the nuances of the forwarding rotating pace line, a break went off the front at about mile 8 that brought our field down to about 9.

A short rise on a dirt section just after the causeway brought that number down to 6. Zoe and Cathy were at the front of this splinter, and unfortunately, I just watched a U of M rider bridge the gap back up to the front group and couldn’t grab her wheel. Dang hilly dirt – I’ll get you one day! Lots of potholes and washboards – I think there was one good line for about 30 feet on the entire 3 mile section.

I tried to catch on by myself and decided to sit up and wait for two others churning down the road toward me – especially when I noticed the turn up ahead into a headwind… Jen (Helena), Annie (GAS) and I worked really hard and had at one point on a headwind section brought the group back within 100 meters, but no dice…

Somewhere in there, we lost Annie (maybe blew away?), which left Jen and I to hang in there. I felt really really strong Saturday (which just kills me that I couldn’t make that jump), and Jen was right there with me and we kept the front group in sight most of the entire race.

At the last corner, Zoe and Katren took off from the front group, bringing it down to a sprint between the two, with Zoe taking theprize!! Jane (Helena) took the next group sprint for third, and then Jen and I were the next “group” in for 7th and 8th. Another awesome showing by Zoe-baby and I keep getting stronger and stronger!

I’m loving meeting all kinds of new people – and with all the women in the field, it’s been great for that. Well, I’d better go do intervals – until our next race: Butte Highlands (April 29th)

Velo Bellas little future

April 17, 2006

Katya Baty – Velo Bellas newest Jr. rider (age 7 cat)
2nd place Redlands Crit

This year while the road ladies were racing Redlands Classic we were lucky to meet the Baty family, Jonathan, Michelle, and Katya. Kristin Danielson and myself stayed in their home and found that their 7 year old daughter is a cycling phenom!

Katya rides to school with her mom and dad most every day of the week. The Baty’s are avid cyclists and supporters of bikes as year round commuter vehicles.

This year she raced her first time at the Redlands classic crit as a new Velo Bella on a single speed and took 2nd place narrowly losing to another local racer on a geared bike. Katya plans on training all year in prep for next year where she can race in the 8 year old category and take the win this time.

Welcome to the team Katya and good luck!

VB-Kona Road Team Manager

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