Hoo Ha!

July 10, 2008 · Print This Article

By Johanna Kraus ~

johanna at the hoo haMassanutten Hoo Ha
Virginia Stage Championship Final, Massanutten Mountain

I’m in the middle of the field season for my job, which means 14 hour days in 90-100 degree heat. I love my job, but a week of this left me feeling a little unprepared for an assault on Massanutten Mountain in the Virginia State Championship series finale, the Hoo Ha. There was a reasonable turn out for the Women’s Pro/Expert category, including some good competition.

The race started up a steepish fire road then ducked into the woods. I was third going into the woods, but the second place rider faded quickly in the face of the muddy, rocky, elbow-fest (they started us at the back of all categories of expert men). The rest of the race I spent chasing the leader, Teresa Richardson of Sobe-Cannondale. Somewhat unfortunately for me the course this year excluded at least half of a super rocky ridge, which is usually where I excel against the competition (who often don’t have access to this kind of AWESOME riding).

Anyway, I caught the leader after the second time on the half ridge we did ride, we rode together – swapping places every so often. She got away from me on an open fire road climb, and when I tried to make my final rock garden move I lost my chain. I tried to finish strong, and ended up 22 seconds down.

I learned some valuable lessons though – like sometimes you have to go even if it’s not in a section that most favors your skills. In the end though it was an exciting and awesome race that challenged me – to me that’s the best part of racing. The new Kona rode great on climbs and descents – although I am still getting used to the more laid back geometry which calls for different body position in corners than my old bike. I had my nice pink Giro lid on too – so I was styling. I broke the first one on its inaugural ride at Sea Otter, so I was stoked to get a second chance.

I think my finish here clinched my win of the VA State Championship series, but I still have to find the official results on this.

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2 Responses to “Hoo Ha!”

  1. sabine on July 11th, 2008 12:42 am



  2. Margot on July 29th, 2008 3:00 am

    Hey J! Email me, I lost your contact info! mdchiutenATgmail.com

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