Holy Week Climax: Providence Cyclocross Festival

This weekend is the Providence Cyclocross Festival and wraps what is considered the “Holy Week” in New England Cyclocross.  This is yet another huge event similar to the Gran Prix of Gloucester–bikes, beer, mud, hipsters, racers, mechanics, vegans, tattoos, Europeans–the whole shebang.  It’s a fun scene with pro talent racing from more than 5 different nations.  This is top-tier cyclocross.

So there is no reason in the world I should consider this as a venue for my second ever cyclocross race.  I mean, that would be crazy, right?

Crazy is as crazy does.  I’m entered in the Cat 3/4 Women’s race at 10:04AM on Saturday, along with 86 other women.  86! That’s a huge field!  The closest experience I have had is LIVESTRONG, and that was certainly no race.

I’m practicing a lot with the limited time that I have and my expectations are nice and low this time.  I’m much calmer this week (talk to me again on Friday) and I’ve been focusing what anxieties I have on researching the course.  I am really hopeful I’ll get at least a one lap pre-ride in, and a warm up before this event.  But if not–I have been immersed in technology for my recon efforts, utilizing Google Earth, previous YouTube videos from 2010 and 2011 from the race, and a bit of creative visualization to better understand what to expect from the course.

The funny thing is that I’m doing this, and I hadn’t planned on it.  The reason why it’s funny to me is because I’m a person who plans everything.  Everything!  It was a chief characteristic in my personality description.  But over the past couple years I’ve been relaxing a bit, which has allowed me to just jump into things without planning every last detail.  It’s either laziness or growth, depending upon what you might consider a good quality in a person.  At any rate, I’m racing cyclocross and having a lot of fun doing it.

In other news, I found some photos of me on Facebook at Silk City.  Steven Yau, I don’t know who you are but you rock!  Here’s one of his pictures:

I like the photo very much except for my mouth.  It looks strange and gaping.  I’m thinking that’s what I look like just before vomiting, because that’s how racing cyclocross makes you feel.  45 minutes of near vomit conditions.  Did I say I love this sport?  Yeah, I’m not sure why either but I do.



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About Karen

Mid-life female amateur athlete focused on cyclocross, mountain biking, and road cycling.

One response to “Holy Week Climax: Providence Cyclocross Festival”

  1. bgddyjim says :


    You’re hilarious dude, at our age to be able to look good in spandex and still play in the dirt, you should know you get a free pass on the gaping mug in the action photo. Go get ’em tiger.

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