Freewheel Cyclocross Team Ripping it Up in the BASP

The Bay Area Super Prestige graces us with its presence once a year. Arguably the most competitive circuit in the area, it has shown us some excellent races so far. The Hunter/Freewheel team has already pulled off 9 top-ten, and 18 top-twenty finishes. Riders have otherwise held a commanding presence within the races.

Czapiga improvises at BASP Candlestick Photo: Pamela Palma

The BASP started with everyone wondering “where in the hell is the rain?”. Candlestick turned out to be a menacingly hot and dry course. When riders’ brains weren’t rattling in their helmets, loose sand and gravel proved treacherous in the turns. The race was also a debut for the BASP’s Bridge of Sighs, an arguably over-dramatic reference to the gallows, the Bridge compelled riders to dash up a flight of steps before bombing down a plywood ramp to an unforgiving landing below. Riders that failed to clip in on the way down risked snapping a saddle. Team Freewheel managed to finish strong. In the Men’s Bs, Nicholas Novarra finished 12th while James Newman and Scott Bryan finished mid-pack. In the Elite Men, Cameron Falconer and Abe Rotstein finished 12th and 16th respectively. Kathleen Hannon finished 5th in the Elite Women. Jackson Rhodes snapped up a 3rd place finish in the 10-14 Juniors.

BASP Sierra Point Night Race

Falconer and Rotstein demonstrate several ways to deal with the brake zone. Photo: ScottyPaz (http://www.flickr.com/photos/scottypaz/)

The Second Race of the BASP took us to Sierra Point for the once-a-year night race. A combination of flood lights and a slight chill brought to mind the days of high school football games, but with added profanity, beer and cowbells. Cramming that many bikes into a relatively small space meant that hairpin turns were all the rage throughout the course. The slow-and-go of an hour long race helped maintain that all-too-familiar puking sensation. Falconer spun his way to a 5th place finish in the Single Speed As. In the Men’s Bs Navarro finished 16th, with Daryl Rogers finishing mid-pack. Hannon fought to a 4th place finish in the Elite Women. Rotstein finished 18th in Elite Men. In the Men’s 35+As, Rob Saybolt crossed 15th while a cameo by Rick Hunter was accopmanied by a mid-pack finish.

BASP Golden Gate Park

Can Benford stuff the hecklers?!

Golden Gate Park could be considered Freewheel’s home turf, then again, it’s a lot of people’s home turf. Most open categories sold out early, making for an impressive turnout. The week before heavy rains paired with the Single-Speed World Championship to create an absolute mess of a course. Throughout the week, however, the sun managed to dry out the park which bequeathed BASP riders with beautifully tacky and responsive track. Amid the barbecue, mechanical assistance and beer, riders and friends enjoyed good company and good weather in the Freewheel tent. Freewheel’s turnout was equally impressive. A total of 17 riders donned the green paisley and skull kit to bring home a handful top-ten finishes and strong competition otherwise. Jackson Rhodes finished 6th in the Junior 10-14. Stephen Kent finished 15th in the Men’s 35+Bs. Hannon fought for an 8th place finish in the Elite Women. Falconer and Rotstein took 8th and 17th, followed by Jason Benford in the Elite Men. Nicholas Navarro finished 6th in the Men’s B with Daryl Rogers and Scott Bryan both pulling up more than ten spots from the previous race.

BASP’s last race for the season will be held on December 11th at Coyote Point, a great course that mixes eucalyptus groves, sandy beaches and long open straightaways. You might mistake yourself for being in Australia if it weren’t for the biting wind and a lack of roos. There’s still time to sign up! Join us for a day of heckling, riding and grilling!

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