Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Blind Date goes well; second date looks brighter

Approximately 300 competitors showed up for the first Blind Date at the Dairy cyclocross race at Alpenrose in southwest Portland Wednesday night.

The first race of the evening, Category C Men, B Women and Beginner Women packed well over 100 riders onto the course that wound around and through the Alpenrose Dairy headquarters/playground that features the velodrome, baseball fields and a mini-car racetrack. As daytime turned into evening and then into night, generator-powered lights illuminated the far corners of the course that the parking and ballfield lights couldn't reach. The darkness didn't seem to slow the racing as the elite racers took to the course.

BODE's Joshua Berry (pictured at left) quickly separated himself from the rest of the Men's A field and survived a crash to easily take the win in front of Ian Brown (Tonic) and Steven Hunter (Velo Shop). Veloforma's Alice Pennington cruised to a comfortable win in the Women's A race ahead of River City Bicycles' Bridget Brown and Gentle Lovers' Dawn Riddle.

Like most first dates, the evening wasn't without a few awkward moments. The last race of the evening was cut short when officials decided several dark spots on the course presented too much danger for riders. But promoters promised to have that hitch cleared up with more lights by next week. Overall, participants seemed to enjoy the weeknight chance to 'cross, and several raved about the course.

The four night Blind Date at the Dairy series runs Wednesday nights through Oct. 14.

5:00 - Kiddie cross (no parents on course)
and Toddler Cross (parents may run along)
5:10 - Juniors (35 min.)
6:00 - Category C Men, B Women and Beginner Women (45 min.)
6:50 - Category B Men and Single Speed (45 min.)
7:45 - Category A Men and A Women (1 hour)

Register onsite up to 10 minutes prior to your race and preferably at least 30 minutes prior. Cost: Kids free, juniors $8, senior men and women $15.

Find more information HERE.

The Complete Cycling Action photo gallery for this race is now posted online HERE.