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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

I get by with a lot of help from friends. Sunday Race is on!

Friends and acquaintances are good to have. Why? Well they are usually better than you at a lot of stuff or have cool stuff you can borrow. In the last week, I've been leaning a lot on friends to make these races happen.

For example, compare these pics, the first three pics below, take my ex-work colleague John Rathwell at the first race of the season, held on Jan. 30th.

Now look at mine:

Well, at least I got two bikes in the picture,. Mostly.
Ok,  it's off center and the light is kinda flat, but it's got product placement!  Buy Kichesippi beer! You buy now!

Well, this sucks. Maybe I should try video...
It seems my skills are more in the realm of race organizing than race photography. Thanks for coming out, John.

As for the race, it was interesting, and it was the snow that made it so for the 20 or so riders that showed up and raced in front of a sizable crowd of amused dog walkers, who had gathered at the start line in Hampton Park. The course, which my friend Martin and I set (thanks a ton Martin!) started off firm-ish, despite the 10-degree Celsius weather we were enjoying (Jamie said that if this was a November 'cross race, everyone would be in shorts). But, as the laps began to build, the course became a wet, soft and slippery mess with everyone dabbing feet and/or dismounting multiple times. Still,  everyone finished with smiles, even the ones who were pelted with snowballs at the finish!

So, here are the top five finishers:

Susan Storm: 1st,  -5 points towards overall standings
Wally West: 2nd -4 points
Dick Grayson: 3rd -3 points
Selina Kyle: 4th -2 points
Bobby Drake: 5th -1 point

Everyone else get . 5 for showing up. Shout out to J'onn J'onzz, who was running neck-and-neck with Susan Storm, until he flatted. That, I think, is the first time I have ever seen anyone flat a fatbike tire, and certainly it is the first in a race!

The weekend following the Wednesday race, my friend Zara and my nephew Wesley joined me to do a scouting for the next race on Feb 10th. The plan was to hold a fat cross event at the new BMX track in Barrhaven. Wesley was going to pack the course down with his snowmobile, and Zara was going to look at the course with the intention of filming it.

Well, that ain't happening.

The Nepean BMX track is glare ice from the melt re-freezing, and unridable unless you have studs. I couldn't even walk up the pump section, never mind Wesley trying to get his sled up it! I came home pissed that the weather has been so uncooperative this year, and wondering what I would do for plan B.

Then I thought of my friend Chris. Chris has a backyard pumptrack made out of snow. Chris invites folks over to ride it. How would he feel about letting a gaggle of people ride it one Sunday afternoon?

He's game. We're on.

So, we are moving out to Richmond, Ontario, on Sunday, Feb. 10th, and onto Chris G.'s backyard track. The program for the day is this: Arrive at 2, practice runs until 3, race until 4-ish (it will be timed laps around the course, best of two runs determine standings) then 4-5 is bbq and drinks until 5. The best part is the course is hard and fast, so regular mountain bikes are welcome! As always, there are prizes to win, including a set of fatbike tires!

However this time around, you have to confirm if you want to come, as there will be a maximum number of racers allowed (it is his house, and he does have a wife and kids, who are amazing and very understanding, but everyone has their limits, and I don't plan on pushing theirs). Shoot me an email at

So to get the address, shoot me a quick email tell me how many are in your party and I'll send you the address. When it fills up, I write a quick "sorry, full" to let you know that, well, we're full.

Oh and when you meet Chris, tell him thanks. Like all friends, he's good people. Handy too.

Here are a few teaser pics of Chris's track. It's not that high or gnarly, so don't be worried. It is hard, so grippy tires are best. Elbow pads are not a bad idea too, if you really want to giver.

See you Sunday!



  1. The last one was awesome, and I'm in for this one as long as I'm allowed to go slowly!

    How do I email you?


  2. Grant-thanks again for the race- good fun.......but Pretty sure that this Dick Grayson (unless there's another one with better navigational skills, and/or lap counting) came DFL not 3rd.