Thursday, November 30, 2006

NCNCA Districts Smackdown

Ok, I'm getting psyched for some serious racing this weekend. Since there seem to be no major races scheduled elsewhere this weekend I'm thinking just about all the contenders in all the categories should be fighting it out for the Districts Titles this weekend at the Bay Area Super Prestige Cyclo-Cross race at Coyote Point (or CCCP). There should be some excellent racing on-hand, so be sure to stick around after (or come early before) your races to check out the action. Oh, and feel free to enhance my predictions and/or give a shout-out to your favorite contender in the comments below.

Barry, it's time to make the NCNCA District officially yours
Photo: Rick

Here's my list of contenders for Districts:

Elite Men (race at Noon)

This is potentially the first meeting of ALL the Nor-Cal Elite on home turf this season. Barry Wicks has to be the favorite, followed closely by Ben and Andy Jacques-Maynes. Other podium contenders include crowd favorite and current NCNCA District Champion Justin Robinson, as well as Chris McGovern, David Wyandt, and Josh Snead, who have been racing all over the country this Fall.

Elite Women (race at 2pm)

Expect a slugfest between Rachel Lloyd, Shelley Olds, and Sarah Kerlin to claim the District Title from current (and unfortunately injured) champ Josie Beggs. Also, expect Stella Carey, Lauren Costantini, and Katrina Baumsteiger to fight out the remaining podium spots. Rachel *should* be the favorite on this course, but there's an eager bunch waiting to pounce on any opportunity should Rachel have trouble...

Masters Men

The 35+ race (at 11AM) could be the single most exciting race of the day, and there are so many potential winners in this field I couldn't hope to pick a favorite. Cal Giant will no doubt field a powerhouse Masters team including Henry Kramer, Steave Reaney, multi-national champion Todd Hoefer, and Gannon Myall, all of whom are potential winners. Don't count out the Morgan Stanley duo of Chris D'Aluisio and multi-national champion Alan Coates. And don't turn your back on current 35+ champ Rich Maile, especially if he decides to ditch the single-speed and ride gears this weekend. Nipping at their heels will be Howie (Mark Howland) and Dan Harting.

The 45+ race (at 10AM) should be another difficult race to pick. Expect Larry Hibbard, Mark Abele, Rob "Buckwheat" Meighan, Don Langley, Norm Kreiss, and Brett Lambert to battle it out. But, if reigning 45+ champ Henry Kramer chooses to act his age once again, the above riders will be hard-pressed to match his power.

The 55+ Men's race (at 8:30AM) should favor John Elgart, but Gary Noe has been close behind all season.


Jeremy Blalock has had a stranglehold on the Pilarcitos Series this year, but Logan Loader has proven can go toe-to-toe with Jeremy. But... I think Jeremy Ferguson is still a junior tho he has been ripping up the A's this season - if jumps into this battle, all bets are off...

Masters Women (race at 2pm)

The Women's Masters races should see the likes of Kathleen Bortolussi, Linda Elgart, C. Crawford-Waller, Julie Brothers, Shauna Potocky, and Julianna Perry fighting out their respective District Titles. I'm sure I'm missing someone from these categories b/c I'm not entirely sure who is in what category since the rest of the season the Masters Women all race together...please feel free to correct me in the comments below.

Single Speed (race at Noon)

Apparently the Single Speed category is officially recognized by USAC, which means Michael Matthews, Kurt Gensheimer, Pat Schott, or Richard Blanco could find themselves wearing a Gold Districts Medal at the end of the day.

BTW, here's a link to last year's Districts Report.


Blogger Steven Woo said...

Jeremy Ferguson is 16.

11/30/06, 11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if james badia raced a's instead of b's, I'd bet he'd beat barry.

11/30/06, 12:11 PM  
Blogger Dave Carr said...

Districts schmistricts, let's talk about Natz.

11/30/06, 12:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think Funke would win the Master 35 division if he wasnt going to race the Elite division to wrap up his series title! Funke is the fastest! And what about Hernando??? Hernando might miss his start or be locked outside the gate and have no chance to race at all, but if he does the 35+ group, he is my number 1 pick. He has been racing the A fields all year and doing well, and the A fields are a little more aggressive then the 35 + group. I think Hernando and Funke would finish 1/2 in the 35+ field if they go for that division.

11/30/06, 12:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, No disrespect to your inclination and fan favorites- they are exceptional athletes, BUT have you been paying attention to the masters races this season? There is almost no other race that has a 3-5 rider group slaying eachother all the way to the finish. None of the elite races have had a group like that go to the finish. That being said, what kind of aggressive racing do you think it takes to do that? Either way, all my best to Funke and MH for whichever class they race this weekend.

11/30/06, 1:51 PM  
Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

no way i'm racing the 35's ... they're too fast. And Funky's gotta race for the overal BASP against AK. What a show that's gonna be.

My picks?

Wicks (duh ... but, then again he could snap another seatpost).

Olds (she breaks away in the sand run and sticks it for the final 2 laps as Kerlin and Lloyd watch each other).

35's: Maile ... i think he's sacrificing a goat to the dark gods on Friday night.

45's: Kraemer - cuz he knows he can.

Juniors: some fast kid

35 women: some fast woman

B's: some fast guy with a $4K bike.

C's: some fast guy with a two $4k bikes.

11/30/06, 2:21 PM  
Blogger worldbtom said...

Good comment OV (or MH) on the uber competitive "C's". Despite all the attention placed on the superstars, there is quite a bit of smack talk and competitive juices brewing with the 8 am racers. While some of them do sport 16-lb $4k bikes, a select few warm up with cigarettes before the race and still do ok. Its a crazy field.

11/30/06, 3:25 PM  
Blogger Rich Maile said...

Olaf, if you ain't racin, I ain't. I do think the m35 race will be a great one. All those guys are going fast right now and with nats around the corner they'll be even faster. I'll think I'll have more fun watching than racing that one. All of the races will be fun to watch. Besides, a dead goat won't make milk. Lates, Rich

11/30/06, 4:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

35 A's,.... better get a good nites rest. Harting is gonna bring it... over yer backs and onto the podium at Coyote Pt.

11/30/06, 8:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Think about it...... The Masters races has the same guys staying together until the end, and if those same guys raced the A race they would get dropped by Wicks or the Jacques maniacs or Vickers or a number of other A riders! The Masters group is incredible, but sorry, none of those guys can ride with Wicks or the Jacques maniacs! Not a one! The racing is just too aggressive at that level! Even if M. Noble shows up, he takes apart our Master guys and he doesnt even stand a chance against the top A NorCal riders who place top 10 at the US GP races!!! Sorry Master racers...... Your fast! But not that Fast! You are over 35+ and over 40+ and you have big ego's but you will never, ever be able to go with Wicks or the Maniacs or other top A riders from NorCal.

Think about it??? I am right! The A racing is just more aggressive! Master racers know who to go with when moves are made and the starts are slower and the groups form and they stick together! The A racing is just more aggressive! Plain and simple! So stop dreaming!!!! the reason why no groups stay together to the finish when Wicks and the boys are doing battle is because they aint waiting to attack, they throw it down from the get go! Again there is no way any of the Master racers stays with Wicks or the Jacques maniacs when they are truly doing their thing! Which Master racer is going to be atacking those studs in the A race??? none~! So I am right and you are dreaming if you think the Master race is as fast or as aggressive as when Wicks puts it down! the racing is more aggressive in the A races! Plain and simple!

Also you use a lot of words like NONE and ALMOST NO OTHER, well check thru the races, and you can see there are groups finishing together in all the divisions including the Elite races.

Sounds to me like your a Master racer yourself who thinks he is fast but would get schooled by the Maniacs or the tall lean fighting machine Wicks if you went head to head against them! So really your not too fast at all!

Again which Master racer is going to put the hurt on Wicks and Andy and Ben?? Which one??

Those guys are too aggressive, and their racing is too aggressive! If you were out there, you would just be in the way!

Good luck at the Districts boy.....

Look at the last Cross race, Funke almost won the Master group, and there is no way he would have been close to Wicks. Sorry!

When the Elite racing is at its best, it is just way more aggressive then the Master races! What do you think?? if Jacques maniacs do a Masters race now, do you think it is going to come down to a group at the end?? NO WAY!

The Elite races are just more aggressive!

11/30/06, 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Funke that Barry Wicks is the #1 seed! But 2 Jacques Maynes are better then one!

If it comes down to those 3 at the end he might have more then he can handle!

I could surely see one of the twin brothers allowing another to ride up the road if it was at the expense of Wicks!

Wicks just might have his hands full against the Maniac brothers!

The racing between these guys is super agressive and they are some of the fastest racers in all of America! It should be fun too watch!

My prediction...........PAIN!

11/30/06, 8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Um, I vote we continue with this thread where Maile left off...

It was interesting to that point.

So let me get this straight: Maile is not racing 35+ unless Hernando does??? Mike, will you accept the challenge and make the 35+ race even more interesting...

Now that would be fun...

11/30/06, 8:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The BJM/AJM/Wicks post came up while I was typing - that is a good spot to pick up too... :)

11/30/06, 8:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I must state my agreement with the previuos post.

The Master racing is fantastic, but it is a scientific fact that after 35 to 40 years of age aggressive hormones decrease and testoserone also decreases.

Thus Master racing may be close, and great, but it is scientificly impossible for it to be as aggressive as the Elite races which contain more youthful atheltes.

Unless some of the Master racers are using testoserone patches or taking aggression supplemants, it is in no way plausable that the Master racing is as aggressive as the Elite races.

Most of the Master guys have gray hair and are long in the tooth.

Those are the facts........

And it has been that way forever.

So the previous poster was correct in his assesment of the rate of aggression bewtween the two racing fields. These are the facts, and nothing but the facts.

11/30/06, 9:03 PM  
Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

uh ...

anyway, gawdamn Maile ... you can't trust a word that boy says.

well ~ maybe i'll just do both. good training, that.

... but only if Rich uses gears.

11/30/06, 9:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it is obvious maile will be racing the single speed division!

he is the fixed gear king.

and unless he has a mechanical he will be the District single speed king as well!

that is unless Barry Wicks races the single speed group!

11/30/06, 9:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Hernando needs to focus on just making sure that the Surf City race goes off ok and with out being locked out of the Fairgrounds!

11/30/06, 9:16 PM  
Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

show off.

11/30/06, 9:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

whoever wrote the scientifically backed masters shrinking ballsack rant didn't watch funke lose the 35+ race last weekend. okay, maybe the 35+ chaingang won't beat down wicks, but it's pretty funny to think that those guys form a group at the front of their race because they're lacking male aggression hormones.

anyway, i think wicks should have to race b's on a tricycle (let's see you ride the run-ups with 5" wheels, barry!!) with a 4' carbon seatpost. rachel lloyd should have to race on a chopper while wearing boxing gloves. stella should have to race with 4 algebra textbooks balanced on her head. and the rock lobster team should have a parade for winning the team competition (if there is such a thing) by collectively pulling paul sadoff seated at a grand piano playing chopsticks. and i will race in a cookie monster mask and moonboots!!

11/30/06, 9:50 PM  
Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

okay ... now THAT'S showing off.

hell yeah, baby.

11/30/06, 10:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

silly rabbitt.....tricks are for kids!

I never said that the masters form a group because they lack aggression, I just said the racing is more aggressive in the Elite fields, and this is true in all disciplines of cycling!

I love our master racers! They have the most experience and this shows in their smooth race tactics and savy race scenarios, but for agressive racing the Elite division will all ways be a no holds bar fight right from the gun.

The top Master guys are great, and i am even married to one! And he really delivers the aggressiveness in bed......after a little Viagra of course!

11/30/06, 11:39 PM  
Blogger funkdaddy said...

..."didn't watch funke lose the 35+ race last weekend"

it's what i do best. if i entered the B race, I'd get 2nd.

i don't know who the fan-boy is on comment #4 but i hope he shuts up soon 'cuz it's just too much pressure on me and my shrinking ballsack. just for you, i'm racing the 35+ race so you can watch me lose TWICE on Sunday.

overall schmoverall...

12/1/06, 12:06 AM  
Blogger funkdaddy said...

BTW this Masters v. Elites crap is moot - great racing is great racing. The fact that Barry Wicks would also win a Women's race doesn't make Women's racing any less exciting or competitive, does it? Appreciate the races as they are.

12/1/06, 12:34 AM  
Blogger Rich Maile said...

I agree with John whole heartadly in his second most recent post. There is a clear difference between the top masters racers and the top elite racers. Those KIDS are professional athletes and we are NOT. They ARE faster and more aggressive in thier racing. I don't think for a second there are any masters that dispute that fact. Allthough there are a few of us that race elite on occasion or exclusively, but we have no delusions of grandeur when it comes to racing against some of the best Elite racers in the U.S. Anytime a race comes down to the last lap or a sprint, it is a great race. It doesn't matter what catagory it is, it makes for a great race. I beleive that is why most of us show up week in, week out.Lates, Rich

12/1/06, 7:14 AM  
Anonymous Hans said...

The Master racing is fantastic, but it is a scientific fact that after 35 to 40 years of age aggressive hormones decrease and testoserone also decreases.

But our endurance gets better and better. ;')

12/1/06, 8:15 AM  
Blogger Linda Elgart said...

I know no one pays any attention to masters women, but what might be interesting is new people coming in who haven't been doing the series, but want to win districts. My money is on Joan Gregg, who has been hiding in Sac, to take the whole thing. (She's in the 45's.) I wonder if any A women will race in the masters in order to try to win the 35 districts? Colleen Wanty? Janie Dalton?

I for one have been sick all week, and just hope to place somewhere enough to hang onto the overall.

Good luck to everyone!


12/1/06, 9:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my look at what Funke stirred up! This is a good one.

So far looks like good racing in all categories!!

But, since certain parts of my anatomy are shrinking, my hair is, um, getting more highlights, my teeth are getting longer and my endurance is improving I want to know if I have it correct.

....It appears Hernandez, Funke and Maile will be joining us in the 35+? This will be great "practice" for those racing this category at nationals. The rest of us, well, it is our duty to be sure everyone gets a good workout so they can stomp nationals...

I think you would be hard pressed to look back and see a time when there were so many potential winners in one category for districts. Please join us guys it will make it that much more exciting.

steve r

12/1/06, 9:31 AM  
Anonymous howie said...

This is just too good to pass up. I don't think any of the previous posts said that masters are faster than elites. Just as aggressive/or not. But what is aggression in racing? Is it who diced who to attack? Who attacks the most? Who attacks and gets away, to ride alone to the finish? Everyone might have their own interpretation of what that is. I certainly FEEL more pressure when we are in the last few laps of our race with 4 or 5 guys still together. One small mistake is all it takes to get popped off at that speed (apparently, ever-slowing, nutsack shrinking, greying, long toothed speed, but speed none-the-less). When you are riding alone with a good gap, you can make all kinds of bobbles and it won't even matter. You've still pretty much got the race in the bag.

Also, if you crunch come lap times, the masters lose as little as 10 and as much as 25+ seconds a lap, on average, to the elites- depending on who is in attendance. That puts our top 5 solidly in the top 10 in the elite race in most cases. As fast? clearly not. As aggressive? Apply your own definition. At least it's an exciting race, or feels like it from the inside, from one old, slow guy to another...
Some of the most aggressive racing to be seen is apparently somewhere deep in the master B group, if accounts of GG park are correct.

Let's keep this in perspective too though. We're not splitting atoms here. We're not ending world hunger, or finding a cure for cancer. Cycling in general, is a fairly self serving endeavor. Sure, we do it, it's really hard- takes a lot of discipline, that MAY lead to some character improvement, which MAY lead to us being better humans, which may make our neighborhood nicer, which may make our corner of the world a better place. But those are a lot of 'mays.' For the most part, it's just pretty cool to do, and the people are fun to be with- mostly after the racing is done and the food-fest starts.

And Steve R: You can't demure so coyly. We all know you'll be right there in contention for the win! Long in the tooth- yeah, whatever...

C race:Some guy with 2x $4K bikes...
that's pretty funny...

12/1/06, 10:40 AM  
Blogger worldbtom said...

Well put Howie. In the big picture scheme of things, none of this means anything. Its not like we are discussing something HUGE like "who is going to replace the yellow Wiggle guy"? I'm sure one the racers out there has a yellow skin suit and good moves. Maybe that could be the new job for Landis? His hip is in good shape now.

12/1/06, 10:58 AM  
Blogger funkdaddy said...

Oh yeah...that's really tragic news about Greg. We're still trying to figure out how to explain that to Liam...

...and I can't believe they're not going to retire his jersey.

Such is the life of a Masters racer ;-)

12/1/06, 1:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

can't wait for some mid-pack domination in the Cs baby! definitely looking forward to the masters and elite races - gotta learn somehow!

12/2/06, 12:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Master racers are fast but they are old! Which makes them slower overall. Or maybe our master racers have some secret way to make them have more aggression, the same secret Floyd Landis had.

I think it is funny how the Master racers think they are on a equal aggression level then their youths.

Viagra is for the Master racers.

Plain and simple.

They race master races, not the senior elite races, so they are in their own world.

But they also need hair color for the gray hair and viagra, so maybe that combination of supplements causes denial.


12/2/06, 5:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Sonny, if I could remember where I put my viagra I would kick your young ass!

12/2/06, 8:24 PM  
Blogger funkdaddy said...

that was flame bait. oh, and does viagra give you more than just an erection, or were you planning on using that thing as a weapon?

personal note: think i'm bowing out of the M35 race, my back is giving me problems and i'll be lucky if i survive one race. sorry to my m35 buds who were prepping to kick my butt - i was really looking fwd to going toe-to-toe w/ SR (for the 1st time), RM (on gears), and the rest of you fast guys. btw it was m35 districts 2004 trying to keep up with Hernando where i injured my back and consequently missed the whole 2005 season...don't want a repeat of that.

old age sucks.

i'll put my $30 on Maile.

12/3/06, 12:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bet my whole supply of those little blue pills on my boy Maile!

12/3/06, 5:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My guess is Noble will come up and win the 35+ race with maybe a chaser like Myall or Hoefer in tow. Funke's prediction of Harting will be a few minutes off. Then Krammer will win the 45 + race or Abele. A flat tire is the only way to stop Maile in the single speed race. Lloyd should be able to handle Olds but you never know. I think Elgart should win but dont count out Frank Curasama. Barry Wicks should win the A race or Ben J.M. Thats just my picks, good luck to all!

12/3/06, 9:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Funke is the champion, but i still think Dave Carr would have won if not for a mechanical!

D.C. will always be the dominate force in Cross!

12/3/06, 10:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

funke daddy is on viagra.........

12/4/06, 2:09 AM  

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