The Ice Race Commeth-Les Femmes Heat up Nationals

Alice racing in warmer weather 2012

Alice racing in warmer weather 2012

Go yonder into the great white north and crush those girls! Our resident Pro Alice Pennington /Kona and our pro in training Beth Ann Orton took on the nation in Madison, Wisconsin on Sunday January 13th.  With temperatures in the teens and a wind chill of 11 degrees, it was a tough day for even the most seasoned pro.

Beth Ann at Alpenrose 2012

Beth Ann at Alpenrose 2012

Mini report from Beth Ann:

Juuuuuust missed a $20 hand up, too!

Race report is, in brevity:  The course was slick and icy, but super duper fun.  The courses’ frozen ruts were blowing apart carbon rims on Saturday, so race organizers attempted to smooth the course with a backhoeSaturday night.  The result was blocky chunks of frozen dirt and chunky ice, and still lots of frozen ruts. It actually felt like a groomed ski run that had re-frozen. Chunder.  The ground softened in some places, leaving a slick clay surface. Very different from last year; certainly interesting.
Alice and I were pitting every lap to half lap.  I think I had 5 bike exchanges, in between which, Matty was apparently chipping 3-4 inches of ice from my down tube.  It was cold enough that bikes only shifted for half a lap, before getting clogged with mud that froze to cables and chain rings. Remarkably, I was toasty warm after slathering myself with embrocation, followed by two generous coatings of Vaseline – ha!
I was called to the line #73, but there were some large pile ups at the start, which allowed me to gain many places in the first 200 yards.  Alice was caught up in the front end of one crash, but was able to make a hasty exit and recovery, finishing 13th. I passed people steadily the first 3 laps, making my way to 19th place for the 3rd lap and 1st half of the 4th lap.  I took a digger on the last 1/2 lap, was passed by 5 folks when I dropped my chain, and gained just one of those back by the finish. Sloppy.
It was a great learning experience, overall, and an excellent time bike racing.  The boys were met by even colder temperatures and constantly freezing pedals, but they all put out excellent rides.
Blah, blah, blah.  Missed you guys there.
Read her official race report with photos here:
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