Sunday, March 09, 2008

Tour of Altona Report

The 3rd annual Tour of Altona went down yesterday afternoon. El Presidente hinted that it was shaping up to be the awesomest ever. And was he ever right. Once again, Altona comes through big. A three-stage race complete with a rink dog feast, home baked prizes, post-race radio interviews, giggles with the Wii, a Duke - Carolina game (I think that's three Duke losses in 3 years of doing this, though), new helmets for the kids, and all around good times.

A big thank-you to the entire Tour of Altona planning committee (Johnny S, David S, Paul B, and the Duker). Thanks also to whomever baked and donated the prizes. The snow shovellers deserve a self-applied pat on the back too. And of course, thanks to everyone who showed up and made it a good event.

Here's a brief run-down of what transpired:

Stage 1: Slow Race - Racers were grouped into heats of 4 or 5, with the top two advancing to the semis, and the top two of those advancing to the final four. Some were just a bit better than others at this arcane discipline. In fact, Ian, Hal, and Gavin put on a track stand clinic. When all was said and done, Hal emerged as the slowest of the slow, followed by Ian and Gavin.

Stage 2: Knockdown - Three rounds and three different winners. This one was a bit disappointing, actually. Way too defensive. We will work on some rule changes for next year to ensure that more elbows, hips, shoulders, and heads are thrown. Nevertheless, Curt F is this year's knockdown champion with 13 points. Chris and Ian tied for 2nd with 8 points each. Gavin had 6 points for 3rd place.

Stage 3: Relay Race - Up, down and around the hill, through the park and back, and then very gingerly back to the exchange point over some exceedingly slick ice. Having been collectively humiliated in the slow-race and still reeling from a sub-par performance from one-time knockdown stud Johnny S, the team of Chris and Johnny S went out hard from the get-go and took no prisoners. They win this event for the second consecutive year, completing 14 laps in the hour-long race. Jonny G and Gavin grabbed 2nd place with 13 laps. Ian and Jeff finished 3rd, also completing 13 laps, but coming in a couple minutes later.

With all the results carefully tabulated and calculated by the Duker, a mysterious formula was applied to yield the following overall results:

1) Hal/Albert - 38
2) Ian/Jeff - 36
3) Jonny G/Gavin - 33
4) Johnny S/Chris - 33
5) Curt/Matt - 23
6) Charles/Dan - 21
7) Steve/Al - 14
8) Bruce/Brenda - 12
9) Paul/Julia - 8

The Film:

And here are a few photos. There are plenty more over at the FGBC Flickr photo depot. If you want still more, be in touch with El Presidente. He took several hundred.

And . . . Go!

Another lap almost done, barring a fatal ice mishap.

Even after a couple hours of shovelling in the morning,
Jonny G still had plenty of gas left in the tank, especially heading down hill

Johnny S & Co. know how to put on a good event.
If they're planning it, you'd be wise to show up.

And that concludes Nordic Cross #6. Once upon a time, Haiku Cross (race #7) was scheduled for this evening. Needless to say, that changed. Rest assured, poetry lovers. I have spoken to the Haiku Master himself. And he says it's still a go. It looks like maybe a Tuesday evening though. Maybe not. Either way, stay tuned for further details.

In the overall Nordic Cross series, Hal has jumped back into the lead and looks to be in good shape to defend his title heading into the final two races. Jonny G and Ian took advantage of Juan Eppstein's absence to jump into 3rd and 4th, respectively. Looks like we have a nice three-way battle shaping up for third place. It helps to show up at the races, especially the ones with high participation. Look at all the people who have participated in at least one Nordic Cross race. Not bad, boys and girls.

Nordic Cross Standings (after 6 races):

Hal - 650
Chris - 630
Jonny G - 460
Ian - 450
Dave E - 430
Paddy - 300
Vic - 280
Johnny S - 260
Tomek - 190
Brad - 190
LeAnn - 180
Unger - 180
Albert - 180
Darryl - 160
Dave L - 160
Luc - 160
Haiku Jeff - 160
Adam - 140
Gavin - 140
Dave D - 120
Naomi - 100
Matt K - 100
Curt - 100
Aiden - 90
Penner - 80
Charles - 80
Dan K - 80
Colin - 60
Al - 60
Steve W - 60
Jonny B - 50
James - 40
Adrian A - 40
Jonny N - 40
Bruce - 40
Liam - 30
Paul B - 20
Julia - 20
Matt H - 10

OTT: Wendy Bucklew, Very Own Car


halloewen said...

sweet event. puzzled by the fact that the team of albert / alberto finished first - weird.

gianni and i almost did not make it to the event as we were sorrily tempted to investigate the meat draw and erotic bingo taking place at the norwood hotel (i don't know - but i would never have thought that the words erotic and bingo could ever go together). i think we made the better choice.

mhandsco said...

Lanterne Rouge!

Well done boys and girls - looks like I missed another fun one...

The Dark Lord said...

Alberto: I don't have the points system in front of me at the moment. But I think slow-race champion was worth 15 points. Only two other racers scored, and they got 5 point each. By contrast, in the relay race the winners got 25 points, 2nd place got 22 I think, and then it was down by 2 points for every position after that (again, I think). In other words, while every team got some points in the relaty, only a handful got points in the other stages. So your being the champion of the slow race was no doubt a big part of your team's overall victory. One might quibble with the points distribution system. But at the same time, it only makes sense that the top places went to teams that demonstrated some consistency across the range of stages. Perhaps that applies most straightforwardly to the 2nd place team of Ian and Jeff. They didn't win any of the three stages, but placed well in each of them. That's how stage races go sometimes.

Oh, and before I forget, I have your prizes in my fridge and freezer.

Matt: It's warming up. Maybe we'll start to see you again.

Gianni said...

Thanks to all for a fun event, sorry I couldn't stick around afterwards... next year, next year.

Stop, slowly, rush
Rough ride gives way to smooth ice
Warm sun yields Tour fun

Gianni said...

Err... And that is why I am going to bomb at Haiku Cross. Whenever it is.

That wasn't supposed to sound passive-agressive.

No, really.