Monday, October 06, 2008

VK's Jenny Trew Takes 6th At Women's Tour of Missouri Crit!

For the first time in history, a Women's Pro-Am Criterium took place in Kansas City September 8th during the men's international elite Tour of Missouri. Vanderkitten was represented by Jenny Trew, Liz Hatch, and Melissa Sanborn. Below is VK's Jenny Trew's recap of events leading up to the women's criterium:

I arrived in Kansas City, Missouri (after figuring out myself and then explaining to numerous parties that Kansas City is not in Kansas - at least not this one!) on Sunday afternoon to be greeted by Holly and Jeff - the friendly neighbourhood picker uppers. I felt particularly important as they stood outside the gate with a sign that read "Jenny Trew - Vanderkitten Racing" and that set the tone for the weekend. I have NEVER been treated so wonderfully at a race. The Tour of Missouri Women's Crit organizers thought of everything and managed to put on quite a show! Special props to Kelly Benjamin of Cheerwine Cycling who managed to do an incredibly job helping out with the organization AND race - it was pretty great to see one of the best riders in the country contribute back to the sport like that!
Sunday evening we had a rider's get-together where we were given food (the fastest way to my heart!) as well as goodie bags and a six-pack of Boulevard beer each (earmarked for the next evening!). Liz, Mel and myself were taken away with the hospitality and looking forward to the next day of racing.
I was woken up early on Monday morning to the crash of lightening and I briefly wondered if we were going to have a repeat of the storm and subsequent power loss in Tulsa. However by noon the weather had "cleared" to overcast but no rain - which was lucky as the final corner would have been really sketchy under less ideal conditions. Mel's client Rob took super care of us and gave my bike a brief tune up in the hotel parking lot the morning of the race - it must have been the extra care that helped me feel the love in the race!
Personally I was a little nervous about how I was going to feel once on the course as since our Track Nationals a week ago I had been taking it easy as I am fairly done from the season! However out on the six corner crit I was good to go. It was a fairly aggressive race and although there were only 40 or 50 girls present - it was the who's who of women's crit cycling in North America - so we knew going into it that it was bound to be a good day. Highlights of the afternoon included a magnificent attempt at the $1000 prime with 5 laps to go. Mel and Liz were perfectly positioned as they called the prime and Mel put in a spectacular sprint - taking it from the last corner about 350m out - only to get pipped at the line by Tibco's Amber Rais...definately painful. That having been said, we still had a decent payday as I crossed the line the final time in 6th behind double National Champion Brooke Miller of Tibco in first, Erica Allar of Aarons in second and Jen McRae in third. Liz added to the cash in twentieth while Mel rounded out the Vanderkitten crew in the pack - exhausted by her fantastic effort.
It's been awesome to be reunited with the VK crew and I know that we're going to lay it down in San Fran next weekend!!! Until next time! Jen :)

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