Arkansas is a nice state. Beautiful. Kind of undiscovered. But, Northwest Arkansas is going crazy with construction. I think it is Walmart trickle down, but whatever the case, it is nuts. The towns above Fayetteville, Rogers and Springdale are booming. Riding around there is pretty strange. Huge 7000 sq.ft. trophy houses. Stone, brick, spectacular. Next, mobile homes surrounded by cars with no wheels. Pretty weird.
A bunch of us jumped into my van and went down to Fayetteville for the Hell’s Kitchen Road Race on Sunday. We left a day early to get to the warm weather early. But, it wasn’t warm and we barely got in a hour and a half before high tailing it back to watch the KU game. (KU won the Big 12 in basketball, #1 Seed in the NCAA midwest)
The race started at 10am. Pulling up, it seemed like there were alot of people for a regional event. I ran into the promoter, Ben, and he said they had over 300 entries. 200 was the most they’d ever had. The course is very nearly the Joe Martin circuit race. Except alot harder. There is only one climb every 20 mile lap, but it is hard. Over a mile long, pretty steep at the top. Enough to make a selection.
I’m not sure how many guys started the PRO 1-2 race. Somewhere around 40 max. It started out pretty animated considering it was in the mid 30’s. The best regional guys came because of the lack of other races to attend. Long story short, I got away all 3 times up the climb. The 1st time to make a 10 rider split. The 2nd lap to get down to one other guy. And the last time to ride to the finish alone. I felt pretty good considering the point of the season. I rode my big ring up the hill the first two laps (11 X 27 cassette). The last lap, I rode the fist half of the climb in a 53 X 21 or so and ended up having to shift into a 39 X 24. Pretty weird how quickly that can go south on you.
Winning alone is always nice. That is the 2nd time in the last two weeks. We had 4 guys in the top 8 (1-3-6-8th). Pretty good results for a little disassociated riding. I was riding well within myself and probably should of used that form to help my guys get better results. But, that is easy to say after the fact. We’re supposed to win the race first, but it’s always nice to work on stacking the places abit.
PRO 1-2 Results Hell’s Kitchen Road Race – Hogeye, AR
1 (1 – Cat1) Stephen Tilford 35598 HRRC Trek Stores
2 (2 – Cat1) Terrence Keenan 43652 THF Realty
3 (3 – Cat1) Adam Mills 102467 HRRC Trek Stores
4 (1 – Cat2) William Gault 192707 CTCA Tulsawheelmen
5 (4 – Cat1) Zach Reed 29400 Iowa City Cycling Club
6 (5 – Cat1) William Stolte 34257 HRRC Trek Stores
7 (6 – Cat1) Nolan Froese 222865 Mesa Cycles
8 (7 – Cat1) Brian Dziewa 126190 THF Realty
9 (2 – Cat2) Joseph Schmalz 197714 Heartland
10 (8 – Cat1) Janne Hamalainen 199458 CTCA Tulsawheelmen
11 (9 – Cat1) Peter Beland 47037 BMC