Wednesday, August 25, 2010

All Hail the Grass Track Czar

Or is it Tsar? Either way, our man Gianni came through once again last night. Big time, as only a czar can do. He put together a killer omnium and gave us an opportunity to experience a variety of track disciplines. One would think the good times would eventually come to an end. But it just seems to get better and better.

The kids kicked it off and couldn't get enough. They were scheduled to do two races, but kept coming back asking if they could do one more. In the end, they did four, including a four lap scratch race that saw them standing up and sprinting basically the entire way. Their consensus favourite was the one that involved cleaning up all the flags. Win and win.

There were plenty of smiles seen on the faces of the big girls and boys too.

The task of crowning the Provincial Grass Track Champion featured a prolonged and hotly contested battle between KK and the Little Dicke. Little Dicke got it started by letting it be known that he was showing up to win. But KK declared it a war with some macho trash talk. He made the first big move in the race too, winning the 2 lap ITT by 2/100 of a second. There is plenty of power that gets generated once those big legs get whirring.

The second round was an Italian pursuit, with teams divided based on the ITT results. This meant KK and the Little Dicke found themselves on opposing teams. That is just as well, since it saved them from having to feign goodwill toward one another. Team Little Dicke came up shooting blanks with a poorly conceived strategy that was even more poorly executed. With his team's easy win, KK found himself with an early two point lead.

The third round was a lengthy miss and out race. Little Dicke couldn't contain his excitement and took off after a couple of laps. Only KK followed, and they eventually lapped the field. Little Dicke took the sprint, narrowing the deficit to just one point.

Round four was a two lap match sprint, with three heats divided randomly based on birthdays. The three winners faced off in the finals. It was Little Dicke vs. KK vs. Rene. Rene was kind enough to lead out. Little Dicke attacked on the first straightaway. KK tried to counter by taking the inside corner. This did not work out so well. His front wheel slid out and he got tangled up with Rene. They both hit the ground. That is no good, especially since the result was that the ankle KK broke last year was smarting pretty good. It took KK a while to get up and rolling again. He conceded two points and now found himself down by one.

The final lap was a handicap race. The kids figured this mean we'd be racing in wheel chairs. That would have been interesting. But we stayed on our bikes. This round was won by grass track rookie, Zach. He narrowly edged out a hard charging Jonny G for the win. KK and the Little Dicke started together and marked each other closely for the full eight laps. They finished 5th and 6th, with the Little Dicke coming out on top for the third consecutive race.

So in the end, the Little Dicke got the job done. He is the 2010 Manitoba Provincial Grass Champion and gets a handsome trophy for the mantle.

KK finished second by two points. Which is exactly how many points he conceded in the crash marred match sprint final. Pondering what might have been, he grabbed the trophy and planted a big juicy kiss on the Little Dicke's prize. Kind of like that one kid at the birthday party who can't stand it when someone else receives the gifts.

One thing seems pretty clear: those two are not through with one another. The 2010 cx season should be a good one. Perhaps some FGBC - RRR animosity will get fueled yet.

Jonny G and Mike G also made a bid to renew the rivalry known as the 2009 FGBC - RRR FGD Challenge. They marked each other all night long and ended up finishing tied for third.

Full results here:

Between the race and the awards ceremony at the klubhaus, we enjoyed a relaxed ride through some of city's new cycling and transportation initiatives. It looks like the ball is finally rolling.

Conversational highlights included a discussion of this video featuring the mayor of our fine city kicking a kid in the face during a recent soccer match and server Lisa sharing with us about her roller derby friends the Murder City Maidens.

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