Wednesday, November 7

Team Rock N' Road CX Roundup

rock n road cyclery brandon gritters spooky cross
brandon gritters rock n road cyclery fear the beard 
 Team Rock N' Road Cyclery CX Team is on Fire!

The cross season is nearing it's half way point and the Gritters Brothers are pouncing all over the leader board.  Brandon is sitting on the top spot (by a few points) and Kyle is sitting in 4th.

Since our last CX post we have been doused some pretty heavy action!  Southern California Prestige Series' 2 day LA Bike Fest, which included the Spooky Cross Night Race and Krosstoberfest race, was full of excitement and craziness.  The Spooky Cross excitement began with the now famous Costume race which proves every year that it is the "must see" event of the CX year.  You don't have to be a CX racer to enjoy riders in costumes racing around and hopping over barriers - we even saw Lance Armstrong riding around with a couple bags of "you know what" feeding into his veins.
rock n road cyclery kyle gritters spooky crossThe real action of the night started when the gun went off to start the Pro Women's UCI sanctioned race.  Teal Stetson-Lee of the Luna Pro Team took the victory under the lights.  Elle Anderson (Ladiesfirst Racing) lead most of the race after jumping away from a 4 rider break, but Stetson-Lee wasn't happy with that and bridged the gap and took the lead and with 2 laps to go.

brandon gritters spooky cross podiumThe heavily anticipated UCI Pro Men's field was next up.  The crowd had been waiting all day for this one and they were treated to an awesome race!  Kyle Gritters found himself starting in last place due to the fact that he didn't have any UCI points to get the call up.  That last place start didn't last very long, Kyle shot his way up to second place within the first lap!  Before long there was a ten man break including Brandon and Kyle Gritters.  The race ended in an exciting sprint finish which was won by Mike Sherer (Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies) who narrowly beat Chris Jackson (Castex Racing p/b Felt) who started his celebration a bit too early.  Brandon finished on the podium in 5th place (I think the "Fear the Beard" campaign helped) while Kyle fell back to 11th place due to his front tire rolling off the rim.  Great job Gritters Brothers!

Sundays round of the LA Bike Fest proved that those who missed out on Saturday night were hungry to redeem themselves.  The pace was high which saw a 9 man break get clear which included Kyle Gritters.  Brandon's efforts from the previous night started to take toll as he fell of the pace and found himself in 14th place (13th place of an elite field of UCI ranked riders).  Kyle had better luck with both of his tires staying glued to the rims, he finished the day off with an impressive 8th place!  Kyle now has himself some UCI points.  Another great job from the Gritters Brothers!

brandon gritters rock n road cyclery

Next stop- San Diego Cross Weekend (Oct 27-28).  This 2 day event had it's ups and downs for the Gritters Brothers.  Kyle had a strong showing on Saturday with a 6th place finish, while Sunday he had a mechanical that forced him to withdraw.  Brandon had a great race on Sunday - on his mountain bike.  You read that right, Brandon took the win on a mountain bike!  The podium finishers all agreed that even though a mountain bike is traditionally slower, this course offered advantages.  Brandon kept his overall lead in the Southern California Prestige Series due to this awesome performance.

kyle gritters rock n road cyclery
The Gritters Brothers were at it again this past weekend (Nov 4th) at Velocity Cross.  The talk of this race course was gopher holes.  Here's a quote from the PB Creative blog ( about the course-

brandon and kyle gritters rock n road cyclery cyclocross"Although mostly flat and without significant technical challenges, the Velocity Cross course was carpeted with gopher holes, anthills and other critter-created nastiness that rattled teeth, anesthetized butts and exploded hand blisters like land mines. Most of this was hidden in power-sucking sod that felt like a wet sponge. Add in yet another day of above average temperatures and a Mojave Desert-derived Santa Ana wind condition and the sum was a race that required equally copious amounts of willpower and legpower."

That pretty much sums up what the racers had to endure.  Brandon came out on top again, although, not without a little controversy.  The USA Cycling judges ruled that Brent Prenzlow (Celo Pacific) cut Brandon off in the last corner.  Prenzlow was relegated to second place and Brandon was awarded the win.  Brandon still holds a narrow lead over Prenzlow in the overall (3 points to be exact).  Here are quotes from the two riders regarding the decision (again taken from PB Creative)-

brandon gritters, brent prenzlow, rock n road cycler“I felt pretty good. We started the sprint and I started coming by on his right side, which was clearly wide open. As soon as I got next to him and had more momentum he moved over on me. I was not happy when I crossed the finish line. I thought it was pretty obvious and the officials did too. So it was good in the end. It seems like there’s a little bit of controversy every weekend. It keeps it exciting.”

“The finish straight is not straight,” he said. “I took a straight line and tried to make him go into the wind to pass me but the finish curves a bit to the right and he was trying to pass me on the right side so it looked like I impeded him. I don’t think it’s a good call. It’s not like I went to both sides of the course trying to run him into the barriers. I went to the fastest line and I was in the lead, so I get to choose my line. It’s okay, there are plenty more races to go. It’s a good battle.”

Stay tuned for more CX racing!  It looks like we are going to be treated to a memorable battle for the overall title.

Thanks to PB Creative and Allen Bean for the great pictures!


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