11, November 2008

Greetings -

The Richard Sachs Cyclocross Team has about one loooong month left to its 2008 season. It's
been an incredible ride all year going right back to the first time I wrote to this cc field way back in
mid January. If you recall, I was suffering from a mild
to severe case of Post 'Cross Traumatic Stress
Disorder, also known as WIMW2IDN* syndrome. Anyway, I had a touch of
personal funk these past
few weeks but there's still some high level racing to be done. We have
the USGP this weekend in
Trenton, the two day road trip to Southampton for back-to-back UCI
C1 races courtesy of Myles
"Just Say" RomaNOw and his pals, then on to Gearworks for a UCI
C2, a couple more UCI C2s in
Rhode Island, and then we're off to the National Championships in
Kansas City, Pennsylvania ooops
I meant Missouri.

I want to thank all those who make it possible for us to make this journey so enjoyable and effortlessly.
The RS 'Cross Team receives financial support from RGM Watches in Pennsylvania, from Boathouse
Inc. in Massachusetts, from Rex Chiu in Palo Alto, from Sam Chun at Radix LLC in Missouri, from
Ozell Stankus Associate Architects in Georgia, from Nelly's Deli in The Bahamas, and
from The
t in Connecticut. In addition to these generous businesses and people, we also have
had anonymous support from
a number of past and present Richard Sachs clients. Our industry
sponsorship also runs deep, and we owe a debt of gratitude to these suppliers who keep our bicycles
uniformly well-equipped and our spares bin stacked in case of emergency: Verge Sport in New
Rudy Project in Colorado, Crank Brothers in California, ChallengeTech in Italy, Selle San Marco
in Italy, Oval Concepts in Switzerland,
Joe Bell Custom Paint in California, Svelte Cycles in
New Hampshire, Cane Creek in North Carolina, Wippermann in Germany, and
Sram in Illinois.
Thank you all for making my job of organizing and running this team that much easier. More than
anything else,
we race for you atmo**.

So I spent the past three weeks or so in a darker place than I like to be and it's all because of racing -
my racing. I took a not-so-bad fall in Wissahickon a few Sundays ago and once again, I put my ribs
in the wrong place at the wrong time. The discomfort and the hit
my fitness took as a result of some
painful recovery days ended up playing havoc with my priorities. While they do include keeping the

team happy, organized, and on the road, I found myself spending a fair amount of time obsessing
about how my own racing would be
affected by the recovery time. Some days were better than others,
and a few races were worse than I would like to admit. And all along
I was aware that I wasn't
taking care of the important stuff in the manner that it deserved and
was accustomed to. Well I had
a couple of
personal Jesus moments this past weekend and chatted with some of my team mates
and also with my wife, a.k.a.
The Lovely Deb, and layed it all on the table. I was duly upset with
myself for crashing, though it's unavoidable in 'cross, yet I was beside myself with the pain
bruised ribs can cause my body, as well the havoc it can cause my racing plans in an already short
'cross season. All of this came
to the surface on the way home from this weekend's venues in New
Jersey, and by the time I purged my thoughts and feelings late last
night, I was ready to turn a page
let go of it all. A good night's rest, a few pleasant emails exchanged with my team pals, and best of
a GREAT ride this afternoon, and I am ready for the rest of the season and all that it brings for us.

So the racing this past weekend took us back to the Garden State once again. I'm a Jersey boy to
the core, though I left at age 18. I spent
my best three years at the Peddie School in Hightstown and
haven't had a moment in a classroom or in a book since I left in 1971. I even
recall when John Hammond
was touting Bruce as the next big thing. I love the Jersey Shore and all the diners from the top of the
to the bottom of the Turnpike, and the pizza and hot dog joints in between. Oh, and about
cyclocross in New Jersey - on Saturday morning I picked Pookums
up from his (and Tali's) digs in
Pleasantville, New York and we drove down to Bridgeton for the Beacon 'Cross race. Normally this
event is a
UCI C2 race but I reckon someone forgot to put enough postage on the return envelope
so it went on as "just" a local race but with a MAC
designation attached. This year, the MAC Series
is a priority for Pookums so I decided it would be fun to road trip it down. The race course
is one of
the more imaginative ones of the season as it's help in a lovely park that runs along a river (or is it a
lake?). Part of the course is a
natural amphitheater that serves as a ride-down and then run-up for
all the contestants. It's known as the Amphitheater of Pain. Yeah - that
should say it all. About 35
Elite Male cats lined up and Pookums had a call up based on a good ranking in the Mac Series
points to date.
Matt got a decent start and then fell back in the field as a result of a few bad falls in
front of him. At one point early on he was as far back as
16th and I was worried that the body count
would be insurmountable. Yet Pook persevered, and with two laps remaining, he was vying for
podium spot. Ultimately, a small group formed with a lap or so two go,
and Matt ended up sprinting
for third, yet had to settle for fifth place.
It was a result that really didn't tell the story since Matt left it
all on the course, fought hard, and rode through a number of different groups
of racers to get oh so
close to the front. While a sixth in and of itself is a fine finish, Matt was just seconds away from a top
three place.
It all comes under the heading of training for leadership, I guess.

After the race, we sped up the pike to meet at Jamesburg, host town of the HPCX, a UCI C2 event.
This race was superbly promoted by the
bicycle racing team of Rutgers University, and those in
New Brunswick should be duly proud of these students. At the ho
tel that evening, we met Issimo
and Spinmo who had made the long drive down from northeastern Massachusetts. Amy, Matt, and
Justin were all entered
in the Elite races on Sunday. I did the 35/45 Masters race. End of story. The
good news is that, like nearly every other f%^$ing weekend
this year, the RS 'Cross Team rocked,
bay-bee. The Issimo, fresh from a long campaign and already thinking of ways to personalize the

decor in the Oval Office, had a good start and then spent most of the race see-sawing between 15th
and 8th place. By the bell lap it looked
like yet another top ten was in the cards for The Amy, but
when the line came up she was about 25 seconds outside of tenth place. It was
a strong effort for
Amy Wallace for President on a course that favored climbers over mudders.

On the Men's side, the field was perhaps forty strong. Justin and Matt both had rocket ship starts
and, by halfway through lap one, a group
of six emerged, and both were there. That group yo-yo-ed
around for the rest of the rest, and one thing was certain, no matter what combination
of cats would
come through, Justin was always there. While Matt ended up fighting back for sixth and then fifth
place, Justin never relented at
the front. With one to go, I expected a win. Justin was on fire and had
a look on his face that told a story. Last year at HPCX we had three RS
cats vying for first place and
ended up with second and third. Justin's eyes and body english said it was redemption time. But
yuck, one never
knows, does one? At about four turns, two bumps, seven trees, and a set of barriers
to go, Spin was passed by young Adam McGrath who
would show his nose for the first time in an
hour. That's all she wrote. Or as Betty Boop would say, "That's all she wote." Justin sprinted hard

and fast, and second place in a hard fought race was his. This was Justin's best 'cross result of 2008
and just a heartbeat away from a UCI C2
race win. The two - Spin and Matt - rode a great race and
each earned highly coveted UCI points as a result.

It was a great weekend that I spent with Amy, Matt, and Justin. Though it was a shorter than normal
road trip, and a lower body count owing to
Will's week off and Jon and Alie staying home to race in
their respective regions, I thoroughly enjoyed the camaraderie, the racing. the Saturday
night dinner,
the lazy Sunday morning breakfast, and all the moments in between. Results are always icing on the
cupcake, but we, as a team,
also win when we have these great race days together. Making memories
atmo. Many more to come.

Thanks for reading.

Richard Sachs Cycles
No.9, North Main Street
Chester, CT 06412 USA

* whoa is me what will i do now
** according to my opinion

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