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Niagara Region, Canada
Team905 Cycling Team is dedicated to providing cyclist an opportunity to be involved in a competitive, but also community focused cycling team. Our objective is to remain active while contributing to an eco-friendly life style and providing unique visibility to local businesses that support our team. We will be respectful to our fellow cyclist and citizens in an effort to grow awareness about cycling benefits, physically, mentally, and environmentally.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Good Start to 2012 EH! Chestnut Park NY - Winterfest MTB Race

A small contingent of Team905 p/b Steelmark Business Services riders (Steve DeBoer, Gregg Bittman, and myself; Jamie Schuman) made the way down to Orchard Park NY for the first annual Chestnut Park Winter Fest MTB Race. This race consisted of two races, a short 20 min "short race" and a 40 min "long race". We all decided to do both races and use the short race as a warm-up for the long race.

The short race started with a sufficient sprint through a parking lot to a field area located beside the main building of Chestnut Park. We made our way through the field at top speed winding through twist and turns, which eventually spit us out at the top of the toboggan hill that local residence flock to when there is enough snow. I have to say this was the best part of the race. A full fledged, eye watering, down hill plunge that tested your bike handling skills as the snow grabbed your tires and steered for you. Steve, Gregg, and myself positioned ourselves within the top 5 at this point, making for a good set-up for the rest of the race.

Once through this section there was a hard right turn onto a fire road, which immediate started the long (500 meter) twisting uphill climb through rooted single track (and funny enough a Frisbee golf course) to the top of the tobogganing hill. This is wear Steve and four other riders broke free of the field and where Gregg held strong for a couple laps and where I showed my rust of being off the bike for 6 weeks due to a broken hand back in October and falling of the pace imeediately.

The course weaved through more wooded sections and brought us back to the main building area where we started a new lap. The short race proved to be a warm up as we only got in 3-4 laps of the course. Steve battled with another rider for most of the race and in the end placed second after pulling his main competitor through the last half of the race and where he made his move on the last section to take to win. Gregg finished ahead of me. Short race done!

The long race started the same way following the same course. We had the same start with all three of us in the top 5 places. Moving into the downhill section Steve and I were 1-2 respectively and I quickly realized the rust was still heavy on my legs and this 40 minute race was going to hurt. So I made the decision to try and slow the pace in hopes that Steve would ride away and get a good gap on the rest of the main group. I was able to create enough space for Steve and he managed to grow a gap and only have 1 other rider stay with him the rest of the race. Steve sized up his competition for few laps and on the last lap broke away and took the win! Gregg and I finished feeling better than we did during the first race and finished in the top 10.

Thank you to our sponsors, Steelmark Business Services, OSSA Canada, Mortgage Intelligence, Zoom Leisure, A Bitt of Paint, and Lucky 73 Photos. Without their generous support we wouldn't be able to wear Team905 colors and grow awareness of the sponsors!

Next Race; Frostbike 2012, Port Colborne.