September 30, 2007

Central Coast Cyclocross #2–Toro Park, CA
5th, Ann Fitzsimmons, Elite Women
6th, Natasha Perry, Elite Women
3rd, Sabine Dukes, Women B
5th, Soni Andreini Poulsen, Women B
8th, Katrina Loera, Women B
1st, Beth Welliver, Women C
1st, Meri Meighan, Junior Women

Seattle Cyclocross Series #1–Snohomish, WA
7th, Kari Studley, Women 1/2

September 29, 2007

Lion of Fairfax, CA
7th, Erika Donald, Women B
10th, Soni Andreini Poulsen, Women B

190 Women at Bella Women’s Tour!

September 29, 2007

by Jackie Yamanaka

Mother Nature smiled on the Montana Bella’s for our 2nd Annual Women’s Tour. Rain threatened. The higher elevations had snow! We were asked constantly what about the weather? I said, “We’re riding. Rain or shine. Women are tough.”

Are they ever. In the end, some 190 women came with their bikes – road, mountain, comfort, tandem, ‘cross – and rode either 15-, 22-, or 40-miles! I’m humbled and proud that so many women – all ages, sizes, and abilities – are brought together by a bicycle.

We learned our lessons from last year when we were overwhelmed with 164 riders. I expected maybe we’d have 50. I’m glad I was wrong. This year we had pre-event packet pick-up at a local bike shop, had road guards out at the worst intersections, and staggered our start times so more could be there for the kid’s ride and the post-event door prize drawing.

We also invited a local group to come and sell bike helmets for a bargin. Montana VB also bought some helmets for kids and others. We’re already giving them away.

I’m so proud of our growing number of Bella Fellas. They helped pump up tires, fix flats, hand out food and beverages, direct traffic, and shout encouragement to their wives, daughters, sisters, co-workers, and fellow (did I really write that?) human beings and cyclists. Of course it didn’t hurt that I kept the “boys” happy with hamburgers and beers.

The best compliment had to be when one woman came up to the registration tables after riding and said, “We think you need to host this ride more than once a year.” Uh…. unfortunately right now there’s a small core of women who make this event happen. We can only hope that as word spreads like our infamous wildfires – The Montana Bellas are in da House! – we’ll get more volunteers – Jackie Yamanaka.

Interbike 08

September 29, 2007

Its always good to go there and thank all of our wonderful product sponsors in person. It was even more fun this year to race a little cross while we were there.

September 24, 2007

Stellacoom, WA
1st, Erika Krumpelman, Women 35+

Anna Takes Two Second Place finishes in Michigan!

September 24, 2007

By Anna Milkowski,

The course today was very similar to yesterday’s (the ground is so dry they have to use drills to put in the stakes), same and different tricky off-cambers and tons of turns, but the grass was a bit more worn. I ran only 30psi today in the tubulars (35 yesterday) and it helped me to be much smoother in the corners. Got the hole shot again, led Kerry the whole first lap. But a friend noted what I think is the moral of the story: "You have more tools than the hammer." And said I should have eased up halfway through that first lap once I had forced the selection, made her do some work, because there was a drafting effect on this course.

I wanted to lead since I didn’t think I was good enough in the corners, but I was better today and maybe if I had not gassed myself I could have jumped ahead to lead those corners I wasn’t good at or closed a small gap coming out. But instead I led that entire first lap, went pretty hard even though I did ease up and rest a bit, but made myself vulnerable to Kerry’s attack coming through the start finish on the paved stretch. She put 23 seconds into me in that second lap, and the gap at the end was 37 (five lap race).

Pack racing and tactics are new to me in cross because so often I ride alone (we all do in the women’s fields), but I think it’s important to improve in this area. But I was psyched to ride better today than yesterday. Teammate Maria did a great ride for 10th. Promoter Jeff Notz put on a fantastic race weekend and I recommend it highly. I can help you crack in on the logistical front next year. For now, on to Vegas!


VB-K Elite Cross Racer Maria Stewart (MN) Reports in on Her First Race with the "Big Girls"

September 24, 2007

By Maria Stewart
2007 Elite Velo Bella Cross Team

Today was my first CX race with the "big girls," the UCI DoubleCross
race near Detriot, MI. I haven’t been THIS nervous for a bike race
for several years. This morning, I was sure that I was going to throw
up, pass out, or both. Luckily neither of them happened!

My race didn’t start until 1:45, but I headed out to the course around
10 so I could have plenty of time to get ready and watch the B and C
class races. I cheered on Monica, a Michigan Bella in the Women’s C
race. The venue was a horse/livestock show grounds (think 4H). The
race course was the most exciting CX course I had ever ridden. It had
everything you could put in a race course: off-camber turns, tight
corners, fast open sections, grass, gravel, dirt, pavement, riding
through a horse barn (no horses in it!), and tons of spectators.

The race started pretty fast, but I was able to hang on to the back of
the pack. Some of my competitors were top cyclists in the US- many
had UCI points. The laps were pretty long compared to courses at
home, so we ended up racing 5 laps for the 40 minute race. My barrier
training really paid off today. For those of you who don’t know, I
spend several afternoons each week at Como Park jumping my CX
barriers. Each lap, I crossed the double barriers really smoothly.
My race strategy was to hang with the pack as long as possible and
then just race hard. That’s just what I did! I even passed someone!

I finished the race 11th out of 14, which isn’t much to brag about
except that its my first CX race of the season and my first UCI race
ever. My race was Cat 1/2 Women, so I definitely placed within my Cat
2 ability. My VB-K teammate Anna Milkowski (New Haven, CT) finished
2nd. I was impressed, even though she thought she could have raced

This race definitely sparked the racing fire under my butt! It was
really inspiring to race with women who are among the top in the
country. It was even more inspiring to know that I didn’t get
completely shelled (even though the winner was posting lap times that
were a minute faster than mine!). The CX world had better watch out
for Maria Stewart in the next couple years!

The Men’s Elite race was awesome too. Probably 50 racers started, and
it was amazing to watch them snake through the course. Jonathan Page,
who placed 2nd at Worlds last year, took the win, but not without a fight.

Tomorrow is another race at the same venue, but a different course.
More about that race tomorrow. Now, I’m looking forward to a great
night of sleep!


September 23, 2007

Cross Vegas, NV
12th, Barbara Howe, Elite Women
24th, Shannon Gibson, Elite Women
25th, Anna Milkowski, Elite Women
26th, Jennifer Tilley, Elite Women
28th, Natasha Cowie, Elite Women

Sacramento Cyclocross Series #1–Del Raso Park, CA
2nd, Yvette Crockrell, Women C

September 23, 2007

Central Coast Cyclocross Series #1–Manzanita Park, CA
1st, Barbara Howe, Elite Women
3rd, Ann Fitzsimmons, Elite Women
4th, Natasha Perry, Elite Women
5th, Katrina Loera, Women B
1st, Beth Welliver, Women C
1st, Kathleen Bortolussi, Women 35+

Charm City Cyclocross, MD
6th, Jennifer Bodine, Women 1/2/3
8th, Melanie Swartz, Women 1/2/3
9th, Alicia Styer, Junior U16

Michigan Double Cross–Day #2
2nd, Anna Milkowski, Elite Women
10th, Maria Stewart, Elite Women

Rad Racing GP, WA
13th, Shannon Holden, Elite Women
16th, Kari Studley, Elite Women

September 22, 2007

Michigan Double Cross-Day #1
2nd, Anna Milkowski, Elite Women
11th, Maria Stewart, Elite Women
2nd, Monica Tory, Women C

Pikes Peak Velo Supercross, CO
4th, Jen Tilley, Women 1/2

Star Crossed, WA
13th, Shannon Holden, Elite Women
20th, Kari Studley, Elite Women
4th, Erika Krumpelman, Women 3/4

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