Results tagged “Laguna Seca” from spare cycles

24 Hour Worlds Photos Up

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Sunset on the 24 Hour Course
IMG_0244 Mark Hendershot Nat Ross
Copy of IMG_0295 Copy of IMG_0334

I've posted the bulk of my photos from the 24 Hours of Adrenalin World Solo/Team Championships at Laguna Seca, which was won by Tinker Juarez in a battle with Kelly Magelky. I was inspired to go shoot the race after watching 24 Solo -- cycling is about pain, and these riders are definitely at the extreme of that. They raced for 24 hours through 90+ degree sun, uphill sand sections, pitch-black night, and poison-oak-lined single track. You have to race perfectly because a broken chain can flush all your efforts down the drain.

As a photographer, it's a great event because you get to shoot under every type of lighting: noon, sunset, darkness, and sunrise. You also have plenty of time to explore different parts of the course and find your shot. I had to limit myself to an eight-hour effort -- I'll have to train harder if I want to do a full 24-hour event as a photographer ;).

I was a bit disappointed to not see an Eatough/Gordon rematch -- Eatough was busy closing up his NUE crown (DNF with a broken axle), but Juarez and Magelky delivered great action as they were constantly on each other's wheel.

World 24 Hour Championships Photos

Previous: Tinker Juarez wins World 24 Solo Championships

Tinker Juarez wins World 24 Solo Championships

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Tinker Juarez

46-year-old Tinker Juarez out dueled Kelly Magelky to take the title of World 24 Solo Champion in Laguna Seca, California. Tinker was constantly nipping at the heels of Magelky for the first nine hours of the race that I was present -- the long hours of the night tipped things in favor of the now five-time champion. Both Juarez and Magelky finished with 19 laps completed, an amazing feat in hot weather and sand-ridden tracks.

24 Worlds Results

Laguna Sand-a

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As it turns out, I took close to 800 photos at the World 24 Solo and Team championships. While I figure out how I'm going to slog through that, there were two photos in particular I wanted to share.

There is a short uphill climb on the course that is pretty much all sand and darn near impossible to do on a bike. I watched rider after rider from the non-elite category come through. Some would get halfway up before getting off the bike. Others would jump off immediately and push their bikes, pleading with their eyes for me not to take a photo of this. I was surprised to hear excuses and expressions of shame, as if you need to justify your actions to someone who's sitting on their butt while you're racing a 24-hour race. I would console them with the fact that I had yet to see anyone make it all the way to the top.

These riders might be interested, "how do the pros handle this?" Continue if you would like the answer.

Sea Otter XC

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Georgia Gould wins Sea Otter XC Kabush leads Peraud

It's a bit late to join the rest of the photos, but I uploaded photos from the Sea Otter Pro XC event. Georgia Gould won the women's race by staying off the front for most the race and Geoff Kabush won the men's race in a sprint. I went to the offroad section to catch the men as they came in on their final lap then walked down to the Laguna Seca racecourse finish to catch Georgia Gould as she crossed the finish line. I had it in my mind that I was somehow going to get this great framing of Gould and the American flag as she crossed the finish line, but the results were a little mixed.

Sea Otter Pro XC Photo Gallery

Sea Otter: Pro Circuit Race Men

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IMG_5400 Daniel Ramsey, race winner

Gallery

IMG_5136This year's Sea Otter circuit race was a bit pared down due to the Tour de Georgia and the riders were greeted with a rain-delayed start and messy course. Successful Living's Daniel Ramsey and Cal Giant's Andy Jacques-Maynes decided to make the most of it by going on the attack. For awhile it was a comfortable break as the field gave little chase -- some fans implored the peloton to give chase.

As the rain on the course evaporated into steam, the race began to pick up. Ramsey and Jacques-Maynes were caught and Jacques-Maynes was quickly shelled. From my vantage point, it seemed that Jelly Belly's Alex Candalario was putting in big efforts as I seem to have photo after photo of him on the front.

Alex Candelario Alex Candelario

Team Successful Living had the better tactical position as they had plenty of riders up front -- as many as four at times. Of all his teammates, somehow Ramsey had the legs to attack the group and from there he built up a huge lead. He rolled into the final straightaway with over two minutes on his chasers and gave Successful Living a well deserved win and KOM.

Short track winner Katie ComptonSpike's Katie Compton delivered a surprise win at the Pro Short Track Women's race. Compton, who usually races cyclo-cross and hasn't raced short track since 2001, took an early lead on the first lap and built on it throughout the race. The Luna riders Katerina Nash and Georgia Gould chased as best they could, but Compton used her cross experience to hold them off on the muddy course.

Pro Short Track Women Photo Gallery

IMG_4598 Wendy Simms Susan Haywood IMG_4580 IMG_4616 Katie Compton

Nino Shurter IMG_4999 Jean Christophe Peraud IMG_4775 IMG_4828 Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski

Ryan Trebon built an early half-minute lead on a group of chasers but wasn't able to hold off a late charge by Jean Christophe Peraud. The track was in better condition than last year's mud pit, but the weather came out in full force. The pictures tell the rest of the story.

Pro Short Track Men Photo Gallery

2006 Sea Otter (Friday)

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The Sea Otter Classic is tons of fun (plenty of Saturday and Sunday events for those who haven't gone yet). It's all of the biking events you can imagine -- road circuit race, MTB endurance, MTB gravity -- all wrapped inside of the famous Laguna Seca raceway. I walked up the hill at the Rahal Straight to the top of the Corkscrew, which plunges riders 50 feet back down (course map). There I watched the Master 30+ and Master 40+ punish each other over the course of many, many laps. I also just barely caught the sight of Women's MTB World Champion Dahle-Flesja fly around the MTB time trial course.

As I walked over to the MTB amateur dual slalom finals, I was a bit more prepared and managed to snap a shot of Jean-Cristoph Peraud midway through his time trial in which he finished second (time trial results). Peraud won the overall in the MTB Omnium event as well as the opening Super CX stage.

Jean-Christoph Peraud-1

I stayed a bit at the dual slalom, which was pure crash entertainment. There were many photographers who were probabaly like me: waiting to get that shot of someone landing in the mud (the riders weren't cooperating with the spots I was choosing). I didn't think the course was very fair: the rain had pretty much made one of the runs a complete mudpit at one of the most difficult points. There was a three-second handicap for the more difficult course, which was fair if you managed to stay on your bike, less fair if you were one of the many people that ended up lying in the mud. The course marshals had to assist one of the riders with finding a shoe that he lost in the mud. The race was a good lesson on never giving up. There were plenty of riders who looked impossibly behind that won when the lead rider crashed. This is my favorite shot from the downhill, which I may end up submitting to the VeloNews contest:

Restart-1

The final event I watched was the MTB short track (19-29 beginners and 30+ beginners). The rain had been the cruelest to that course. One person referred to it as "soupy;" I thought of it as cement mixing. It was faster in many parts of the course to run with your bike then attempt to navigate the mud and taking photographs was easy because the riders were pretty much standing still. The race was torture on both the riders' bodies and their pocketbooks. After suffering for almost half an hour, Al finished with two broken derailers.

The weather on the day was beautiful, though it poured rain shortly after I left. I heard that day 1 was wretched and there was certainly evidence of that on the MTB courses, but Friday's weather was t-shirt weather, possibly the best day of weather we've had in a month.

The funniest moment on the day for me was explaining to Al's parents how many different fun events there were to watch from the road racing to the MTB. I mentioned that there's a crash every minute on the dual slalom course and, right on cue, a rider went flying over his handlebars trying to land a jump. The rider raised his fist in triumph afterwards, so I'm sure he's fine.