This race was put on by the Appalachian Bicycle Racing Association and JR Petsko in Oakdale P.A. a suburb of Pittsburgh. The race was on the site of an old Nike Site, which was used for radar and bomb deployment during the cold war era. There were several of them around this area as well, one of them you could see from Rt.2 in Painesville just West of the Painesville exit. They are since long gone, but alot of the buildings and grounds still stand. This particular one was kind of perfect for a cross race. Lots of terrain changes and paved sections with a set of man made barriers and wooden steps and very short steep slippery climb that most had to dismount and carry the bike up.
I lined up in the 40+ Masters race which included some pretty big names, Gerry Pflug, Gunnar Shogren, Jeff Guy, and other Cat.1-2 studs. This was basically an open Masters with all categories represented. I had a second row call up which wasn't too bad and when the horn went off I got a good start on the pavement until we went into the twisty technical section all bottled up together. Someone washed out in front of me and I almost went down, got my balance and someone else hit me and I went down this time. I got up fast and started running with my bike, re-mounted only to find my chain had came off, off again to put the chain back on and by this time the last guy in line had passed me. The group wasn't that far ahead so I jumped on it for the remainder of the race, rode strong and climbed well to gain many positions back. I finished top 10 which I was happy about but I know if the crash wouldn't have happened I would have surely been a few places better.
Hats off to the guys that designed the course and the day, very well done and thank you all!