Thursday, December 9, 2010

It's Over

Now the OVCX has come to a close and it was a fabulous season. A big 180 compared to last season where it was muddy every weekend but we finally got our muddy (and frozen) this past weekend in Indy.

I would like to congratulate all the State champions and OVCX overall winners, sandbagging or not. Even if you are sandbagging, you still have to show up to all the races and also hold off your other sandbagging fellows to win the overall.

A fellow reader sent in this link to me. Read it! It's about upgrading and if you finished Top5, maybe even Top 10 in the overall, it's time to look at upgrading before renewing your license

Now it's time for me to go into a little hibernation until spring. There is nationals going on now, and a few other races here and there like the Kingsport, TN UCI race on January 15th, but the domestic cross season is pretty much over. I'll continue to post things here and there but I'll be back in full force once road season hits. Unfortunately (or fortunately for you), the road season is more segregated than cross. There is a Ohio series and a Indiana-Kentucky series. I'll mostly be covering Ohio races so all you INKY racers are pretty much safe from my wrath unless I get some reporters to help me out (you'll be completely anonymous if you do decide to help me out.)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

2011 OVCX Changes

Like any sporting series, rules change from year to year. Mostly incremental changes to address gray areas or issues that may have come up, and sometimes complete overhauls of the system. With the huge growth of the OVCX, change in how things are done were inevitable. For the 2011 season, Mitch Graham, our series promoter, has proposed some drastic changes to our points system.

I'll say this from the beginning, you simply cannot satisfy everyone. Someone will always be disappointed in change, but change is good. Remember, this is racing. Someone is always going to win, and someone will always lose. In the perfect world we all win, no one loses, we have nice bikes, drive nice cars, have the perfect wife/husband, straight-A kids and not a worry in the world. Unfortunately we do not live in the perfect world.

This discussion is on over at Bikeclicks and copied and pasted from there.

There is no further commentary from me and the following block of text is unedited. (except for formatting and readability)

We all have the same goal--improve the OVCX Series.

Here are some thoughts on how we could do that by adjusting the daily schedule.  Sorry for the length.

Many of these ideas come from what we've all read on here.  I've also received some emails and discussed this stuff with some folks and used their ideas.  In other words, this isn'tmy work, it's a collaboration.

For starters, here's some data.  Excluding the UCI races in the series, here are the per-race average (mean) numbers for the 2010 OVCX through Infirmary Mound.  The categories that typically race together are grouped, and the total-on-course numbers are given in red (this isn't 100%; promoters grouped races differently on occasion).

Elite Men 24.6 racers = 24.6 on course

Elite Women 10.5
Elite Men 35+  10.7
Elite Men 45+  9.8  = 31 riders on course

3 Men  24.6
3 Men 35+  22
3 Men 45+  18.2  = 65 riders on course

4 Men  35.1
4 Men 35+  27.5
4 Men 45+  18.5  = 81 riders on course

10-12 Juniors  17.1 (boys and girls) = 17 on course

3/4 Women  10.7
3/4 Women 35+  9.6
Singlespeed 7.6  = 28 on course

13-14 Juniors  13.3 (boys and girls)
15-18 Juniors  5  (boys and girls) = 18 on course

Before we move on to proposed changes, question number 1 has to be, "Is there a better way?"  We've got a great series.  Should we mess with the daily schedule to try and make it better?

The folks that I've talked with the most think that we should.  The input on this site seems to indicate that we should.

Question Number 2 is "What is ' better?'"

To the folks who've had direct input into this email, a "better" daily schedule is one that promotes more fun and morecompetitive racing while spreading the numbers of racers more equally across the time slots.

"Better" also means (1) better for the greatest number of racers, (2) not getting you to the race too early, (3) getting you home by dinner, (4) giving you the "right" amount of time to race, (5) having the fewest number of races on course at a time, and (6) when it's necessary to have more than one race on course at a time, pairing categories that are similar in abilityand providing an incentive for the different categories to race each other so it feels like one race.

"Better" means getting the most folks that we can get to come race the OVCX every week.

Of course, there's no way to design a daily schedule that's perfect for everyone.  For every give there's a take.  It's a difficult puzzle.

With all this in mind, here's a stab at an improved daily schedule.  Be sure to read the Very Important Note.  It's important.

Also take note of the riders on course with this schedule.  It balances the numbers.

Finally, whatever daily schedule is adopted, it should be the EXACTLY THE SAME at every OVCX race except the UCI races.

9:30   4 Masters men  35+ /45+   30 minutes          
          45 riders on course
          Single start.  Sort category placing from overall results.

Very Important Note:  Series points for single start races like the 9:30 race would be awarded as if the race was one race.  Call-ups would be based on these series' points so that racers are staged by their results in these races, not by category.  A racer's category placing on the day would be reached by sorting the overall results.

For example, if the first 45+ placed 10th in the 9:30 race, he'd get the series points for 10th, not first-place points for  45+.  Of course, he'd still be in first place for 45+ on the day and accumulate the most series points of any 45+ on the day.  This method would mean that everyone is racing everyone on the course for series points even if not for category placings.  This would apply to all single-start races--10-14s, 4 men 35/45+, 3 men 35/45+, 4 men and 15-18 juniors, and 1-2 men/1-2 men 35/45+.  It would also apply to 4 women/4 women 35+ and 1-3 women/1-3 women 35+ because these groups start together despite being in a time slot that has a staggered start with a men's race.  

10:15   4 women   30 minutes
            4 women’s 35+            
            28 riders on course
            Stagger start SS/women (2 not 3 starts) Sort women's category placings from
            overall women's results.

11:00   10-12/13-14    juniors  25 minutes  (typically 3 laps)
            31 riders on course
            Single start.  Sort category placing from overall results.

11:40   4 men 30 minutes
            15-18 Juniors
            40 riders on course
            Single start.  Sort category placing from overall results.

12:25   Kids 10 minutes

12:50   3 Masters men 35+ /45+   40 minutes
            40 riders on course
            Single start.  Sort category placing from overall results.
 1:45   1-3  women 40 minutes  $400
           1-3 35+ women  (All women race for the $400/10 places)
           3 men
           35 riders on course
           Stagger start 3 men/women (2 not 3 starts)  Sort women's category
           placings from overall women's results.

 2:40   1-2 men 60 minutes  $1,500
           1-2  35+/45+ men  (Everyone races for $1500/20 places)
           46 racers on course
           Single start.  Sort category placing from overall results.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

World Cup #3 Koksijde, Belgium

WOW! What a race. World cups in Europe is such a different game. So many fans out in the cold cheering on their favorite rider. Totally different.

It was good to see Katie Compton win and also a great battle in the mens race. Unfortunately our American men, Johnson and Page did not fair so well.

I wish I could post some pictures but some security guy at the airport stole my Leica M9 and lenses out of my bag. I'm sure Scot H will say it's karma.

Ohio State Champs tomorrow! Wish I could be there but I'm going to stay here in Belgium for a few more days.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Promotion Cross/KY State Championships

Lexington, Kentucky, stop number 12 in the OVCX tour and also the Kentucky State Championships. Another fine course which was challenging and described by some as very mountain bikey.

Biggest news is my efforts on this website have paid off. My favorite Cat 3 masters races have either moved up on their own accord or been forced to move up by Mitch and the promoter (I'm thinking the latter). The top 3 guys in the Cat 3 35+, Shane Nalley, Peter Hills, and Brian Collier raced the Elite Masters. Shane didn't do too bad either.

Bigger news is the confirmed rumor of the consolidation of the Masters categories. Yes the six Masters mens category's are now going to be two. So no longer are we going to have Elite Masters 35+, Elite Masters 45+, Cat 3 Masters 35+, Cat 3 Masters 45+, Cat 4 Masters 35+ and Cat 4 Masters 45+. Now there will only be a Masters 35+ and Masters 45+. I think this is an excellent move by Mitch. No longer will you have six categories to keep track of and it greatly discourages sandbagging. Now the question is, do you race with Rose, McShane and Messer, or just do your Open 3 or Open 4 race. There is also a move to eliminate Womens 3/4 and Womens 3/4 35+, and simply make it Womens 3 and Womens 4.

There's really not too much else except me beating a dead horse (regarding the 3's), but one guy did stick out.


Scott raced Cat 3 open last week at Infirmary mound and climbed up on the podium in 3rd place. Then at Promotion, he raced 35+ and WON with a sizable lead. I don't know about you, but I call that Grade A Sandbagging.

Anyway I'm off to Belgium to go watch the World Cup this Saturday. I miss my State Championships at John Bryan, but this is an opportunity of a lifetime so I must sadly miss out. If you haven't already go register and support the great race TJ is putting on. Heck, he's done most of the work while he is overseas on DUTY! Wow what a man. Serving our country AND promoting a CX race.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Infirmary Mound

The furthest North OVCX race comes to Granville, OH for a combined OVCX and Cap City show down. Overnight rains made the course just right for super fast speeds. Thanks to Kyle and crew for another fabulous race. Also thanks to the folks down in Louisville, KY to make the haul of the drive.

Once again, we have the Cat 3's running the sandbag show. Ray was once again on fire and Matthew Kiel, brother of Ryan Kiel (who I've called out before), took the win. Quite a gap too to the rest of the field. I think it's hard when you are winning out the cat 3 series to move up. You are sitting top 3 in overall but by upgrade points you all should be cat 2's. So what do you do? You don't want to move up cause then you lose your overall spot. I think the promotors should be proactive and say, you top 5 in the points, you are now all racing Elites.

My other favorite sandbagger is Peter Hills, mentioned several times here on this blog. A win and another podium. Also the same can be said with the other two rounding out the podium as they all are top three in the overall points.

How about this, lets get rid of the Cat 3 masters category. Or at least get rid of the 35+ and 45+ and possibly just make a 40+ category. That is what our eastern neighbors do over in West Virginia.

Here's a good video for your enjoyment! Credit to Blake W

Cyclocross at Infirmary Mound CapCityCross/OVCX November 14, 2010 from Blake W on Vimeo.

Friday, November 12, 2010


Sorry fellas, life gets in the way sometimes and I didn't have the time to point the finger for all my fans. I'll do a little summary of the past two weeks of racing and give my preview for the OVCX/CapCityCross double event at Infirmary Mound.

I'll start down south with Storm the Greens. We seemed to have a little premature celebration last year bidding farewell to River Road Country Club but we were back at it again. We'll start out with my favorite sandbagger category, the Cat 3's. A shake up in the standings as Jason Monk takes the lead over Ray Smith who has been at the top for a few weeks. Those two have a sizable lead over third place. Over in the women's race, Elizabeth Cobb and Staci Mandrola are up on the top step again! To give Elizabeth some credit, she did race the elite race afterwards.

Up in Ohio, there was the party/cross race known as Uncle Steve's. Bone rattling surface, check, fire, check, beer handups, check, creek crossing, check. In the B race, we saw a new face win and not too far later, Joe Hall roll in for second. Joe certainly is strong enough to be a 2 both in cross AND ON THE ROAD. Especially when he solo bridged to the breakaway on some early spring series race.

This past weekend, we had Gun club along with some mountain bike race up in michigan... oh what was that again? Oh yeah Iceman. I've never really understood the fascination of Iceman. Really, why would you go to Michigan to do a mountain bike race. However I'll have to give props to Brian Matter for winning his third Iceman. He has won Chequamegon three times, Ore to Shore three times and Iceman three time! The following day, a popular guy on this blog, Ray Smith won the B race at Ice Cross (though it is his first win.) This "big" event might have pulled some racers away from what I think is the best OVCX race, Gun Club.

Oh yes my favorite race of the OVCX season. Gun Club has all the great ingredients for an excellent cross race. Double sandpit, wide open sections, not so wide open sections, hard climbs, crazy descents, good food and always a good atmosphere.

But then again, the Gun Club race can quite possibly the most controversial race for more liberal types on the schedule. I mean, its held on a gun club, is called GUN club, and races start with a SHOT OF A GUN! The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence claims that the mere presence of guns makes you 3-5x more likely for you to get shot, and guns instantly make you a cold blooded murderer. With their logic, we would all be running around (rather riding around on our cross bikes) and shooting each other while racing. On the other side, the NRA and other gun rights groups say they are full of shit and guns save lives. I'll stop here without getting overly political and I quite frankly don't care which side of the fence you are on.

Really at Gun Club the real sandbagging deal is in the Cat3 masters. The 35/45+ got their own feel good race and well, it was quite obvious some of these guys don't belong. The winner of the 35+ was pretty much long gone after a lap or two, David Johnson. And on the second step on the podium, its Peter Hills AGAIN. I've seen him on the podium what, like at every race? Take a page out of Corey Green's book and start racing Elite masters. And rumor is, Peter sent out some nasty email to the Team Dayton email list about me.

This weekend is the Infirmary Mound race up in Granville, OH. I know its a haul for you all in Louisville, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, but we up in Columbus make the drive down to your races. Its a great course and you won't be disappointed. If you haven't already registered, do so now!

Monday, November 8, 2010


Sorry I've been slacking! Between going to the Rally to Restore Sanity, Halloween Festivities, going to Iceman, last week blew by quick and I didn't get a chance to write about Uncle Steve's or Storm the Greens.

In the meanwhile, send me all your crazy Halloween race photos, sandbaggers or not.

I'll get that post written up soon, along with GUN CLUB later in the week!

Monday, November 1, 2010


If you haven't already voted, GO VOTE TOMORROW!!!

For all you in Ohio go here for voter info.

Reports coming in the next few days. Keep checking!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

USGP Derby City (dust bowl) Cup

The USGP Derby City Cup has come and gone and I would say was a great success. It was the debut of the new Eva Bandman park and I have to say, it is a very nice course. Very euro, wide open course with some very challenging features. Props to everyone involved to make that happen.

Like two weeks ago at UCI3, the unseasonably un-cyclocross weather continued with highs in the 80's and dry dusty conditions. At the start of every race, a huge cloud of dirt emerged as riders went from the paved road to the grass. I cleaned my ears this morning and it was absolutely filthy from the two days of running around in the dusty conditions.

One thing could basically sum up the races, BIG FIELDS! Every field was huge. As a consequence to the large fields, riders were being pulled. Especially in the Pro race where less than half finished the race.

As in any race, it always seems a group of 5 or so just ride away from the fields. Happened in the 4's race, happened in the 2/3 race, and the masters races. If you started in the back, there was no real hope to get any good placing.

The 2/3 race was dominated by a 15 year old Jordan Cullen. Yup 15 years old, yup two wins. Looks like he earned a Cat 1 upgrade this weekend. Rounding out the podium on both days were Mark Parmelee and Andrew Coe. Fortunately, or unfortunately, Jordan can't race the UCI Elite race just yet since he is a junior (correct me if I'm wrong though.) I would say he is a prime candidate to attend the Euro Cross Camp later this year.

The Elite women's race was pretty much a repeat of UCI3, except with Georgia Gould in place of Katie Compton. From lap one on both days, Georgia got the holeshot and never looked back. The fight for the podium proved to be much better entertainment as valuable C1 points were up for grabs on Saturday. Natasha Elliot rode into 2nd place while the battle for 3rd was hot with Van Gilder, Antonneau and Miller in the mix. Meredith Miller had an impressive ride. She got caught up in a sandpit crash and found her self in the back half of the race. She gave it her all and finally got into the 3rd place podium group in the final few laps and settled in for 5th place. I thought for sure she would get the SRAM most aggressive rider award but she didn't.

Sunday was a pretty similar race with Georgia going off the front and Natasha Elliot chasing. However Natasha burned too many matches trying to solo bridge to Georgia and got spit out of the chase group once she came back to it. She later recovered, got back to the group and settled for 4th. Meredith Miller and Laura Van Gilder rode together for most of the race until the last few laps when Miller dropped Van Gilder. A wise move since everyone knows Van Gilder is very hard to beat once on the pavement.

So when are we going to see America's best battle it out at one race? Well I don't think we will until Cross Vegas next year. I would love to see Katie Compton, Katerina Nash, Georgia Gould, Sue Butler, Amy Dombroski, Meredith Miller all battle it out.

For the men, it was a three man show. Tim Johnson, Ryan Trebon, and Jeremy Powers. That was your podium for Saturday and Tim and Jeremy swapped places on Sunday. The blistering pace those three men set only allowed 16 people out of 73 to finish on the lead lap on Saturday and 20 out of 70 on Sunday. It was amazing what the Pro men did because everything was bigger and faster. Some of the riders, such as Barry Wicks, were riding an almost unridable hill "The Louisville Slugger." You went down this super steep rutted downhill, did a quick 180, and went up a similarly steep and rutted uphill where 99% of the people ran up. It was a bit easier on Sunday since there was a longer run-in to the hill but those riding it on Saturday was insane.

I would also like to wish speedy recovery to our local OVCX fast man Mitchell Kersting. He went down in the first corner in Saturday's race and hurt his knee forcing him to abandon and sit out on Sunday. Its really unfortunate that these things happen but it is part of bike racing. Watch out for him next year though, he'll be hungrier than ever.

With four races left to go, Tim Johnson and Jeremy Powers sit on top of the leaderboard with 174 points each. Todd Wells sits in third with 107 points, Tristan Schouten fourth with 98 and Trebon fifth with 94. But anything can happen. One bad day and the rest of the guys can sneak up into the lead. It'll be exciting to see what happens at Fort Collins and the finale at Portland.

Since there was some more cross racing going on around the world, Stybar wins the World Cup, Van Paasen wins the Womens, with Nash coming in third, and Adam Myerson wins his first UCI Cross race!

Oh on a side note, looks like I got the ok from the wife to plan our trip over to WORLD CUP #3!!! Time to use those vacation days, get out of the country, eat some frites, and watch some cyclocross!

Friday, October 22, 2010

It's USGP Time!

Yup it's that time again, the US Gran Prix of Cyclocross will be in Louisville, Kentucky at the new Eva Bandman Park this weekend! 1351 people preregistered to race over two days, so about some 670 racers flooding into the city. Throw in your significant others, family members, cheer leaders, vendors, staff and volunteers, probably upwards of 1500 people flooding in for the race.

Will you be there??? I certainly will. Why would I miss one of the marquee cyclocross events in the Mid-west. Now will you spot me? Will you see me with a camera, stopwatch and notepad taking notes? Will I be in your race bumping shoulders with you?

Well that will be for you all to find out. The only clue I am going to give you is I will be there.

Since this is such a big event, I can't cover everything. Send me an email with pictures or video to or twitter @ohiosandbagger. If you are using twitter use the hashtag #OSB

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Sandbagging Statistics

It was suggested to me through email that I should start doing more statistical analysis on sandbagging. The emailer said I should take lap/finish times of the riders and then do a Z-Test to find out who falls out of the Gaussian distribution

WHAT? Did I lose you? Yeah, I kinda lost myself too. I took stats in college but I never did like that class.

I suppose I could to statistical analysis of the finish times but that would involve A: Finish times provided by the ref/promoter, B: Me or someone else taking times, C: The timing actually be accurate, D: Me doing more work. Doesn't seem like a lot of fun on my part.

Sure I can punch in the numbers into Excel and it would do it all for me. I would still have to put in the times (unless it is provided on a website), run the tests, do analysis, and write about it.

Then this site will just be another boring stats page. Where is the fun in that? I would just rather point the finger and see what happens. I mean, if Zdenek Stybar showed up to a Cap City race, we wouldn't need to use statistics to figure out that he would simply crush us with one leg.

No offense to you the emailer, but I think most of the readers want to see more point the finger, see what happens, rather than a cut and dry here are the numbers blog.

But hey if someone wants to be my statistician, you are more than welcome.

What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Cap City Cross Coffman Park

The second round of Cap City was in Dublin at Coffman Park!

I guess someone didn't get Andy's memo of NO JERKS rule. He didn't mention in his email but I'll do it for him.

Chris Grisvard got in a fight with someone DURING THE RACE!!! I've seen fights post race, but very rarely do you see shit go down while you are racing. I wish I had my camera and posted that on YouTube. I'm sure there will be repercussions, most likely resulting in fines and suspension for a few months.

Huge numbers for the 4's race, some 40+. NICE! Also seeing some of those 4's doubling up and doing the B race and doing quite well. Maybe its time to just race the B's?

TONY! Good Job. You even skipped the B's and went straight to the A's and did pretty damn well. Probably be the last time I'll be mentioning you here.

However I'm not done with Double G. Glen rolled away and won the Cat 3 35+, then rolled another win the the Single Speed.

Personally, I think cyclocross is the hardest to double up in. If you are pulling double podiums, then you are seriously not racing the correct category.

On another note, the NEOCX series up in the Northeast had NO sandbaggers according to a reader email. 

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Stop #6 of the OVCX series stopped into Bloomington, IN for BloomingCross. BloomingCross kicked off with a FREE Saturday Barry Wicks cyclocross clinic followed by a great bonfire. What's greater than learning tips from one of the best, then setting things on fire eating S'Mores!

As expected, Barry took the win but more interesting was Sherer over Knapp. I would have bet Ryan over Mike, but Mike has had an excellent season with a huge win at Glencoe Grand Prix earlier this season (sorry thats not cyclocross but huge none-the-less.)

 I'll first start out by saying congrats to Elizabeth Cobb. I called her out and she has done the right thing and move up to the Elite Women.

Seems like we had a new winner in the Cat 3 race. Always good to see a new face up on the podium. We also have a new sandbagger alert with Jason Monk getting up on the second step on the podium. With that second place, he's also sitting pretty second in overall points behind Ray Smith. Ray didn't crashed but managed to recover to finish 8th and now sits on top of the points.

But do the math, Ray has done 6 races with 334 points and Jason 5 races with 282. Average it out and Ray has 55.7 and Jason 56.4. Very close. Third place isn't too far off either at 56 points.

Now lets move onto the Masters categories.

This came though the OVCX mailing list today from Fred Rose and I have to say it's great that he's saying it.

Speaking as someone poised to take advantage of this curious practice myself as of next season, I would simply like to say that (IMHO) the practice of having a separate (read additional) pay out for the Masters 45+ is needless, silly and should end.

It makes no sense and is needless extra work for Barb and other race officials. One race. One pay out. Separate points for OVCX standing.


My major beef with the series is do we really need Cat 4 35+, Cat 4 45+, Cat 3 35+, Cat 3 45+, Womens 3/4 35+, Elite Masters 35+ and Elite Masters 45+??? Seems like a nightmare for the officials and scorers just so people can feel good at the water cooler talk at work on Monday. "Yeah I won my race on Sunday!"

How about Cat 4 Open, Cat 4 Masters, Cat 3 Open, Cat 3 Masters etc...

Now Corey Green. 2nd in the Single Speed race, then you got 3rd in the Cat 3 35+ race. Its hard enough to double up, but to double up podiums? On top of that, the top 4 Cat 3 35+ (Corey Green, Shane Nalley, Peter Hills, Brian Collier) and top 3 Cat 3 45+ seem to be running away from the rest of the riders.

Cap City Report Tomorrow so bookmark this site and check back.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Bloomington and Dublin

Two races this weekend with OVCX going to Bloomington and Cap City in Dublin.

Unfortunately I won't be racing either of them since I did battle with the pavement and lost. So I'll need the help of my fans to get the scoop so I can write something on Monday. But depending on my schedule, I may pop in one of the races to spectate.

Also I hear that Barry Wicks is gonna dominate at Bloomington.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Leah Halloran and Peter Hills


I don't know how that slipped through the cracks at registration. Maybe you didn't put that upgrade sticker on your license and thought you can slip by. BIG TROUBLE COMING!

And to satisfy my female readers, since they keep nagging me about it, Elizabeth Cobb. Wins at Kings and Fishermans. Time to move up to Elite Women.

Peter Hills, it is time to move up. Two wins at Kings Cross, 4th at Fishermans, 3rd at Dark Horse, Win at Java Johnny's, and 3rd at Harbin. Quit sandbagging and move up to Elite masters.

Monday, October 11, 2010


I have witnessed the greatest sandbagging feat of all time...

wait for it...

wait for it...

Katie fucking Compton!

Katie simply dominates all the women who race domestically here in the United States. She simply has no real competition but herself. She sits around for a half lap to a lap and just launches an attack. Then she is gone. She was even riding her B bike all weekend with the heavy SRM and still beat her competition. Whenever she races here, the real race is for second place and it's been that way for 4 years in a row. Maybe if Katerina Nash toed the line, she can give Katie a run for the money.

What do you expect for a World Class athlete though. She should be battling it out with the likes of Vos, van den Brand, Kupfernagel and van Paassen. But I guess you have to make easy money sometimes and she cleaned out the promoters a nice $3339. Not bad for three days of easy training.

But now on a more serious note, what is up with the almost 200 man Cat 2/3 open/masters field!!! The officials complain about how big the field is and how hard it is to score and the guys in the back complain about having very little chance to get to the front (especially on the Saturday course. It was absolute carnage out there.

The field is big enough, if Mitch, Doug, Nick and Joan (yeah the USGP 2/3 field is just as bad) are reading this, maybe its time to split that field up. Make a separate Cat 2 field, make a separate Cat 3 field and maybe even a separate Masters 3 field (or just lump them into 3 Open.) Having a Cat 2 field will let those guys not good enough to mix it up with J Pows and TreeFarm, but too good for the 3 race have a chance to shine. Yeah it sucks to stick around for an extra hour or two, but it will make things a bit easier don't you think?

But what do I know about promoting races, I'm just a guy sitting behind the keyboard and monitor criticizing.

A few other things I noted during this weekend. Don't be that guy that ghost rides the race. Yeah, Glen Gardener jumped in the race without a number or signing a waiver. I hear its punishable for up to 6 month suspension. And Tony, don't get frustrated and throw your bike and helmet cause you slid out on an off camber turn and couldn't catch the Juniors in the Cat 4 race. It's just bike racing. Also finally, don't be the millions of guys that didn't have the correct category on your license and had to try to get day-of upgrades by calling Andys or Kirk. Seems like the people checking licenses were turning away tons of people for incorrect categories. I'm all for anti-sandbagging, but please do it right, gather your results, and submit for an upgrade.

All and all, a great weekend for cyclocross, except with un-cyclocross weather. Excellent announcing by Two Johns Podcast crew, good food all weekend. But I could have done without the dueling drum solos at Harbin Park. Thanks to all the sponsors to make this happen.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Cap City Cross Big Run

I love Cap City! It's a nice low key race series that while promoting good cyclocross, it promotes having fun while you are at it. Run by none other than Andy Johnson, he's put in hard work to make the series as good as it is today. He's not too bad of a tattoo artist either.

The great thing about Cap City, is the built in anti-sandbagging measures. You don't make any money by racing B's or C's. That's right, no money unless you race with the best.

This race was held at Big Run park. A very nice park with lots of off camber muddy sections and showed who was the best at riding their bike. Cold and rainy most of the day but cyclocross racers are the most BADASS hard core cyclists right?

Now onto the sandbagging commentary:
Tony, Tony, Tony... You raced the C race and just ran away with it. No one was close. You could have stopped by the Trek Store tent, grabbed some Frites, and still won the race. With that performance, you would still have been top ten in the B race. Good thing all you probably won was a water bottle. Second place was not too far back either and should also have raced B's. But Tony at least you attempted the B race, but results show a DNF. Not sure what happened there.

Now in the B race, it was a two man show off the front. I guess the B race is also the Masters race, but also just shows as Cat 3/4, broken up into 35+/45+ for overalls. I hate to really put Rudy in the sandbagger category and I won't. He's been there and done that and a phenomenal rider (I guess I didn't eat my crushed glass, nails and brewed cat piss this morning)

As we head into the weekend, we look forward to the great UCI3 CX Festival. Three days of UCI racing on tap, show casing the best. One of the few chances you all get to see Katie Compton too so don't miss out.

Just a reminder about upgrading procedures. TWO WINS IS AN AUTOMATIC UPGRADE! So all of you racing Cat 3's in OVCX, you can't really win out the series. Well that is if your upgrade guy is being proactive.

I guess there isn't any provision for an automatic upgrade by points like in road. The only way to get an auto upgrade seems to be by winning two races. So the sandbaggers can just ride away from the field, wait at the finish line, and come across second to avoid the dreaded auto upgrade.

Points awarded for Cyclocross Races

Number of Starters





























Requirements for upgrading via points:
4-3:      Experience in 10 races or 10 points in 12 months
3-2:      10 points in 12 months (two wins is an automatic upgrade)
2-1:      20 points in 12 months (two wins is an automatic upgrade)

Ohio Sandbagger Modified points structure
4-3:      Experience in 10 races or 10 points in 12 months (15 points is an automatic upgrade)
3-2:      10 points in 12 months (two wins or 20 points is an automatic upgrade)
2-1:      20 points in 12 months (two wins or 30 points is an automatic upgrade)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

OVCX #2 Fisherman's Park

Well well, look who won the Cat 3 race at OVCX #2 in Louisville at Fisherman's park. Ryan Kiel! Ryan took a win and second place at Kings Cross. Maybe its time to move up the Elite category. I'm sure you would do fine and steal some prize money from me!

Another name that sticks out to me is Cory Swihart. If I recall correctly, he was racing the Elite Category last year. So what is he doing racing down this year? To take easy money from the hard working cat 3s.

I'm gonna give props to Luke Haley, a phenomenal Junior racer for moving up to racing Elites. He took a win at Kings and did the right thing and moved up. Guess what, he did very well too taking 8th. Keep it up and you'll see yourself on the podium this year. Same goes to Drew Dillman. He moved up to Elites from cat3 last year and has stepped on the podium.

Now its hard for me to call people sandbaggers in the Elite race, but I definitely can call out those just clogging up the race (brought to you by Joe.) Now the four of you who got beat by Nikki Dallaire (phenomenal rider and she did TWO races), you need to go home, train harder and harden the fuck up.

Cap City report coming in a few days. There were some sandbaggers... stay tuned

Monday, September 27, 2010

Michael Chewning!

Congratulations on getting your Category 2 upgrade in Cyclocross!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Devou Park Festival

This was posted in the comments so I thought it would be nice to pass it along.

"We are having an open house/fund raiser for the Devou Permanent Cyclocross Course on October 2nd starting at 12:30pm. Cyclocross spectacle goes off at 2pm. Festival and Grill Fires up at 3:30pm. Email for more info. "

Of course Joe and Scot H are going to comment I'm bad for the sport, I'm a piece of shit, and I should die a slow and painful death

Friday, September 24, 2010

Rebuttal Friday

To play fair with my readers, I am going to dedicate Fridays to defend yourself or one of your friends who I have called out. Fridays will be the day to redeem yourself before going into the weekend of racing. It would only seem fair to you all.

I would also like to point out that this blog is mainly going to be satire. Many of you have taken and interpreted my writings as written and have been very offended. Yes I know all the protocols and rules regarding upgrading but if this were a cut and dry, to the rules blog, it really wouldn't be funny now would it. It would just be some boring news. I do admit I did take it a bit far a few days ago, but it was simply to stir shit up. I wrongly assumed that it would be so over the top that no one would really believe it. But it really shows that the OVCX community is very tight and supportive of anyone racing. Again I am sorry for my stupidity there. So please, if you are going to continue to read, take my words lightly.

And when the day comes when I reveal my identity, I'll let all you haters get back at me. At a big race, I'll tie myself up on a tree, put a sock in my mouth, sack over my head and become a human pinata. I'll let you all beat me with a baseball bat with no legal consequences (short of death.)

Now lets get to the point and rebuttals.

I called out Ray Smith in a previous post and he quickly emailed me defending himself. If you look back at his results, he actually was racing Cat 4's last year. So definitely he was racing the correct category for the first races of the season. Ray has been racing lots of 100 milers and has definitely has gotten very fast and will be a person to watch out for this season. Again, I was quick to judge, but that is the point of this blog, to stir up controversy. Ray will do well in the 3's or if he so chooses, the 1/2/3's. I hope Ray will come back and start reading this blog again.

An emailer who chooses to remain anonymous, told me that many times people get turned down for their upgrades. Obviously, they have no choice than to remain in their category, rack up a few more wins and reapply for an upgrade. On the flip side, I think upgrade coordinators need to do a better job being proactive about upgrades. Sure the upgrade guy/girl might not do cross, but doesn't mean they need to turn the blind eye.

Another good point is the said rider may have been the bottom of the barrel last year, trained their ass off, and now is ripping legs off of their competitors. To them I raise my glass and say cheers as their hard work has paid off. Now rack up those points and quickly upgrade. Remember 2 wins gives you an auto upgrade (assuming correct field size.) Racing with faster people will only make you faster.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Sandbagger Origins

Now I'm sure many of you know who a sandbagger is by now. It's someone who races a category too low for their ability. More often than not, many of these sandbaggers have no desire to upgrade and have to race at a higher, more difficult category.

Reasons may be because they A: do not have the time to train to compete at a higher level, B: they like to just pummel other guys around, C: easy prize money or D: like in A:, they are too lazy to train and just reaping the benefits of their talents.

So I was wondering, what does sandbags have anything to do with a racer racing down a category?

So a quick search on Google yielded some good results.

First stop was the dictionary definition on The first definition was "to bank, stop up or weight with sandbags." Well that is definitely not the definition we are looking for. But wait, 2a: to hit or stun with or as if with a sandbag
b: to treat unfairly or harshly
c: to coerce by crude means
d: to conceal or misrepresent one's true position, potential, or intent especially in order to take advantage of

Now definition 2D is more along the lines of a sandbagger in cycling. With a few more mouse clicks I was able to find that back in the 19th century, gangs and gang members would simply use a sock or small bag, fill it with sand and beat people with it! Brilliant! A cheap but effective weapon! With these sandbags, they intimidated the population and went along with their gang business.

So I couldn't possibly go without trying out this new piece of information so I headed over to my dryer, took that lone tube sock whose other half has been missing for years and filled it some sand from my backyard. I put in enough sand to make about a baseball and tied it off. I swung it around a few times and could definitely feel the heft and while I was thinking I could really hurt something, I accidentally hit myself in the leg... OUCH! Now onward to the pesky neighbor dog that keeps barking through the night... (ok now you really think I would beat the poor helpless dog with a sock full of sand?)

Now the next evolution of the sandbag term came from the game we all lose our money at in Vegas, Poker! In poker, a sandbagger is someone who has a good hand, but holds off on betting to give his opponents a false sense of security. If you get pocket aces and go all in, most likely everyone else will fold. But instead you slow play it and then bam! You throw out your good (sandbag) hang and clobber them all.

Wikipedia also has a bunch of other sandbagging definitions but they all are pretty much the same thing. Racing: dialing in a slower ET and braking at the end to not break out; Finance: forecasting low so your profits look better; Golf: play poorly to get a good handicap then actually playing your potential, etc.

Well there you have it, coming from the mouth of the sandbagger of all sandbaggers. You can also go over to The Best Bike Blog Ever and read Joe's version.

Now time to go sandbag those raccoons who keep knocking over my trash cans

Public Apology

I am sorry to all of you fellow viewers for my racist comments toward Katsu Tanda in my last post. I have removed the snippet in the last post.

I have emailed Katsu and apologized to him as well. I am good friends with him and it was all a big joke. To clear things up, he is Japanese and one of the nicest people you'll ever meet.

And to make thinks not so anonymous, I have invited him to write on his blog. I will need other writers or reporters as well since I cannont be at every race, especially when there is a Cap City and OVCX race on the same day.

Again, I am deeply sorry for my previous comments.

Cross Vegas

We sure won't see any Sandbaggers at Cross Vegas tonight! Too bad Interbike is moving to Anaheim next year and we will no longer see Cross Vegas for at least 3 years. NOTHING beats the 10,000 people drunk and rowdy cheering on the best in cross racing.


Anyway, with no OVCX or Cap City for two weeks, I may not have much to write about. Or maybe I will.

Until next time

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

McShane and Rose

Since angry commenter Dan pointed out Mike McShane and Fred Rose were sandbagging the Elite Masters race, I decided to take a look.

I guess everyone who has been to an OVCX race for the past few years and watched the Elite Masters, there is a similar theme, McShane and Rose. Who will win? Seems like everyone is racing for third place.

Last year, both McShane and Rose won their Elite masters category, 45+ for McShane and 35+ for Rose. Unfortunately, the results don't show the raw finishes so I have no idea who topped who at which race since they both have 100 points for just about every race.

Both Mike and Fred are more than capable of racing an extra 15 minutes and racing the normal non-masters Elite race. Example is Mike did the Elite men's race at the Promotion Cross since he had the series locked up. I remember him either rolling a tire or crashing and losing a lot of time. Then a few laps later, he blew by me and settled in for 4th place. If he did not have that mechanical/crash, he would have definitely would have finished podium.

Another point is Kings CX day two. Andy Messer did the Masters race and could not top those two. Andy is a very good cross rider and consistently finishes high in the Elite race.

Though they do have once little bit of defence. They race the Elite masters category at the UCI3 and USGP. McShane, if I recall correctly, travelled to Jersey and maybe Portland to get in on the USGP action and did very well.

But ultimately, the point of this blog is to call out the sandbaggers. So Mike McShane and Fred Rose, race the Elite race. An extra 15 minutes isn't going to hurt you. On the plus side, you'll get an extra hour of sleep

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sandbagger Submissions

A quick update on sending me emails on Sandbagging accusations.

1: Please try to give some explanation. Past results will be nice. I will try to do research on my own, but it would help if you did some leg work for me.

2: I WILL NOT CALL OUT JUNIOR RIDERS. NO EXCEPTIONS! You can send me Junior rider accusations but I will not post them. Please kindly ask them or their parents to consider moving up.

3: If you happen to be the accused, you can send me a rebuttal email. Obviously this won't be an anonymous posting otherwise we won't know who is defending themselves. If you are defending a fellow accused sandbagger, your comments can be either anonymous or with your name. By default it will be anonymous.

4: Lets also praise those people who move up a category either from last year or mid year. There will be a props post every once in a while.

5: Lets keep this somewhat civil. If the submissions or comments get too unruly, I will shut this blog down. We don't need people going to races angry. I will try not to post anything too offensive and I will delete comments which I may deem too insensitive or other commentators deem it so. And please, if I start to get out of line, send me an email to keep me in check.

Kings Cross Day Two

I wasn't at the second day of Kings cross but I got the scoop from people.

GOOD JOB and Congrats to Michael Chewning for moving up and racing with the big boys. He pulled off a nice 16th place in the Mens 1/2/3.

I will also like to explain some things as well. Some comments have said along the lines of "Well if you are at the front, that makes you a sandbagger?" or "So you get lucky and in the break, you are a sandbagger?"

If we were road racing, this would not really hold true. It's very easy to take a free ride in the break or sit in at the front. This is NOT the case in cross. There is so much more rolling resistance that you can't just go on for a free ride. Plus there is the bike handling aspect of cross. You also are going a lot slower so there is less draft benefit. That said, if you are in the field lapping Cat 3 break in cross, you are still working your ASS off to stay there.

As for the "I hope these "sandbaggers" move up to the 1/2/3 field and take your money. Did you think about that one? " comment, I welcome that. More competition is better. If I get beat and don't make money, I just need to go back and train harder for the next week. We're all not in this to make a living so who gives a Fuck if you don't make money. I spend thousand of dollars each year and hundreds of hours on the bike to go out and race and GET MY ASS KICKED. I go home feeling good about myself that I gave it my all and I turned myself inside out.

Want your favorite sandbagger featured on this site? Send and email to All emails will be confidential and your name WILL NOT be revealed.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Kings Cross Clarification

Ok, I don't have any beef with Chewning. I just called him out since he was the most notable one who stuck in my head. I'll also call out Dan Lach and Ray Smith who were also in that mix. Can't remember who else was in there.

I'll also give props to Josh Johnson (Cat 1/2/3 winner) and Adam Rodkey who moved up to the big boys this year.

Nope I'm not revealing my name. I'll keep it Bike Snob NYC style and keep it anonymous.

The only thing I'm going to tell you is I race with the big boys and suffer like a dog for 1 hour. So I'm not sandbagging

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Kings Cross

Witnessed some major sandbagging in the Mens Cat 3 race today at Kings Cross. Top six broke away from the rest of the field and put a HUGE gap on the rest. Included in that mix was Michael Chewning, who is the current Ohio State Cat 3 CX champ.

Do the right thing and upgrade you sandbaggers. Or at least race the 1/2/3's

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Welcome to Ohio Sandbagger

Welcome to Ohio Sandbagger, the resource for sandbaggers in Ohio.

If you have any sandbagging info or would like to suggest a fellow Ohio sandbagger, send us an email at You email will remain anonymous.