NORBA National Race #1 Fontana
Photos and story by "Crash" Maxwell
There was no getting up early to go race on Saturday for Lacey. Her first NORBA National race was scheduled for 3:30 in the afternoon.
After getting the bikes loaded, we headed out to Fontana, better know as “Fontucky” to most of the So. Cal. riders.
As soon as we pulled up to the park, we knew something rally BIG was going on. After parking a little way up the street, we made our way over to get her checked in.
Since I only had the course description provided on www.geoladders.com , I decided to try and find out how long of course Lacey would be racing today.
The lady behind the table said that the Jr. Beg. Women would be doing 1.5 to 2 laps. Well, going by the Geoladders description, and by racing there last year, we were guessing that it would be about a 10-mile race.
“Hey there’s Donny, let’s check with him”, I told Lacey as we were checking out all the exhibitors. He confirmed it, 1.5 laps of a modified course. Cool!
When the time for staging finally rolled around, Lacey lined up with the rest of the Jr. Beginners.
When the announcer said go you would have thought the lead girl had been shot out of a cannon!
When they passed back by heading for the first climb, I yelled at Lacey, “stay cool, she’s going to blow herself up halfway through!”
Lacey passed me as I stood at the bottom of one of the last downhill sections.
“I’ve already crashed 3 times”, she yelled out to me.
“You’re ok, keep pedaling”, I yelled back.
I was able to pedal around the road just in time to see Lacey ride the last steep chute before the finishing section. She was REALLY MOVING!
It ends up that the course was about half as long as they were told. The girl Lacey was racing ended up finishing with a smoking 25-minute time! Lacey came in second with a time of 34 minutes.
Lacey said that she enjoyed the course, that the downhill sections were really fun, except for the deep sandy sections, but she was a little disappointed that it was so short.
We found out after the race that the girl Lacey raced was the 2005 Jr. Women’s 14 & Under MTB National Champion, Brittney Vanvleet. We talked with her for a few minutes after the race, and found out that she has a great attitude, and that she and Lace have a lot in common.
With Lacey crashing three times, it makes me wonder how close she could have been to catching her?
I’m sure Lacey will get another shot at “the Champ” sometime soon.
Next stop is the Big Bear Cal State Series # 4 on May 21.
Thanks to The Path, Hoss Technical Gear, and The Warrior’s Society for all your support.
Lacey shows off her crash damage:
Pro winners Geoff Kabush and Shonny Vanlandingham cross the line together. Supposedly the first the mens and womens leaders have finished together:
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