A cyclocross race at Sea Otter Classic? In April? Would anyone show up? The answer was yes. Through the fields were small, even tiny for the pro women, it didn’t stop the fans from loudly cheering the racers on.
Using the terrain around the Laguna Seca Lakebed, the course which started and end on the racetrack included a few grassy sections, so-called kitty litter pits with gravel instead of sand and a foray into the expo for a barrier section near the Sierra Nevada Beer Garden.
While the racers at the front were racing hard, many were enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of (very) early racing to simply have fun. The crowd was happy to cooperate with beer hand-ups, dollar hand-ups and even a salad hand-up for Georgia Gould of the Luna team.
Gould and her teammates Teal Stetson-Lee and Katerina Nash went 1-2-3 in the women’s race, delivering another win for Gould after the cross-country victory earlier that hot day. In the men’s race, Belgian Ben Berden (Raleigh) swiftly escaped to take a solo win ahead of Aaron Schooler (H&R Block). Craig Richey (Raleigh) took third in a heated three-way battle with a last lap surge in the 60-minute race.
Lyne Lamoureux runs the Web site, podiuminsight.com that focuses on the North American road and cyclocross races and people that inhabit that world, viewed mostly through Lyne Lamoureux’s eyes as a freelance sportswriter and photographer. Lyne has a big gallery of photos from the Sea Otter cyclocross race and if you want to see a whole bunch more great photos from the first ever Sea Otter CX race, check out her gallery, here: http://www.podiuminsight.com/2012/04/25/sea-otter-classic-cyclocross/