Crosswinds Ride

I hope everyone had a great time today.  We changed the normal route, and although there was a little resistance, I think everyone enjoyed riding some of the same roads from the opposite direction.

I noticed a lot of smiles.

Unfortunately, Mr Cahn will not be able to join the ride tomorrowL.  However, I hope to see the rest of you at 8 am in the Crosswinds parking lot for another A paced distance ride.

The 2013 Fifth Annual Woodward Loop Recap

The Fifth Annual Woodward Loop Ride brought together the largest number of riders ever for this event since its 2009 inception which was the 100th Anniversary of Woodward Avenue being paved.  A total of 170 riders participated in the Loop ride.  90 of the riders started out from Biggby Coffee in Birmingham on Old Woodward & Maple at 7:30 and headed out on the “first” start, riding north to Pontiac and around Wide Track Drive, also referred to as the “Loop.”  Thanks to Kristen J. for her directions around a couple of minor road issues near the tracks south of Downtown Pontiac. Everyone made the north climb of 350 feet without incident and managed an average speed of 18 mph.  On the route back south, the ride leader opened the gates and most of the riders took up the relatively downhill course back to Birmingham on the nearly car-less Woodward at speeds of 28 mph and faster.

Arriving in Birmingham prior to 8:30 and having traveled about 17 miles with 500 feet of climbing, the first wave of riders were greeted by an additional 80 riders who were planning on the trip to Detroit and a view of the Detroit River. Despite construction on Woodward from 14 Mile to Webster where we were riding on one of the two open lanes, not one automobile passed us in the construction zone!  From there it was clear sailing to Detroit.  The roads were smooth, traffic nominal, and several riders, including David Hicken and Ron Rich, facilitated ride leadership to pace the riders to Detroit.  Passing Palmer Park, strollers in short skirts waved hello and many pedestrians and those sitting on the curb cheered us on!  We passed Albert Kahn-designed buildings and headed past Comerica Park without having to detour as we did last year. On to Hart plaza. Russ St. John brought a group of riders from Grosse Pointe to join in and we had a huge group in front of the “Broken Rim” sculpture at Hart Plaza and a nifty photo opportunity.  Scott Kroske took some great photos as did many other riders.  Danny Klein commented, “Man this is a fun ride!” Mark Cahn could not let go of a smile all morning.

From there, about 40 riders split off for a fast tour of Belle Isle and most did two laps.  The bulk of the riders headed north on Woodward where we turned west onto Adams then north again onto Cass.  We rode north toward Wayne State University and stopped at Avalon Bakery for a trail cookie or other snack.  The ride delineated itself with several groups and paces upon the return.  Everyone sat in and the routing was back up Third to Chicago Blvd., across to Hamilton and north to Palmer Park near the Detroit Golf Club.  Our group took 7 Mile to Warrington and north, working our way to Livernois. Despite a bit of construction at 9 Mile, we continued through pleasant Pleasant Ridge.  We took Drayton west which becomes Oak Park Blvd. to Manistee, then north to Northfield and west to Scotia.  Leaving Oak Park we rode through Huntington Woods and onto Beverly Hills and to Birmingham.  The final mileage count was 56.4 miles with 900 feet of climbing.  It is a bit up hill from the Detroit River it seems!

Michigan Youth Cycling gained well over $1000.00 on the generosity of the riders, and special thanks goes out to Joe, Rose, Biancha, and the staff of Biggby Coffee for supporting our ride, tolerating our sweaty jerseys and for again making a generous contribution to MYC!

For those of you who would like to contribute you can do so in cash or check to me and I’ll deliver it to MYC or go to the website: and you can do so by mailing in a check or go online.

Thanks to all the o2/CBC riders who came out and supported this fun event.  Racers and casual riders sharing the route that links the communities along Woodward Avenue like “pearls on a string” reinforces the idea that we are all members of one large community – and that a bike friendly community is a friendly community.

Activities Director

2013 Cherry Roubaix Road Race (45+)

Jim Ignash (1) and Mike Dega (4) rock the podium at the 2013 Cherry Roubaix in the Masters 45+ Road Race.

The 45+ group produced great results at the 2013 Cherry Roubaix Road Race. The course is 23.3 miles per lap with the masters race completing 3 laps. The start-summit finish line is high atop Sugar Loaf Mt.  I thought I would share what I observed during the race that gave O2 the victory.


It was decided during a pre-race meeting that Mike Dega was going to be the aggressor, a roll that the Team agreed could lead to a stage victory.  Dega committed himself to a roll of extreme effort that would lead to victory – or an all-out bonk.  No rest, no draft, just mental and physical pain.

Lap 1

The race took off with a more relaxed pace, but of course, Team Hagerty sent a “flyer” off the front to create a break.  The field did not react, letting the rider ride solo within view.  I moved myself to fourth position watching for any moves from Craig Webb of Team Hagerty or Tom Linck of Leadout Racing, who Mark Cahn and I thought were the two strongest riders in the field.

At about the halfway mark into the lap, Dega and a second rider made their move to bridge to the leader.  I was extremely happy to see that the peloton let Dega go and that he was able to drive the break out of our site.  This was an aggressive move that required guts and an all-out commitment for victory.

At this point our team plan was running according to script. 

Lap 2

Cahn and I were doing everything we could to slow the peloton.  C. Webb seemed to be content with his teammate working with Dega in the break, however T. Linck, and Newton Cole, a new rider with Burnham Racing from Chicago, were growing uneasy.  They began trying to increase the speed of the peloton; however the rolling hills made it tough to get anything organized. 

A rotation did form, so I put myself into 5th position making it difficult for a large number of riders to participate.  At this point C. Webb was still content sitting in, while T. Linck was expending a lot of energy pushing the 4 rider rotation. 

Half way into the lap, the rotation began to break up and the peloton slowed.  At this point, N.Cole decided to make a strong move to bridge to Dega’s group.  M. Cahn anticipated the move and latched onto Cole’s wheel.  While the peloton was still recovering, N. Cole and M. Cahn met up with Dega to create a five rider break out of the peloton’s site.

At this point, I thought “Checkmate”, but C. Webb and T. Linck had other ideas.

Lap 3

At the beginning of lap three, I could tell Webb was getting nervous. The break was still out of the site and he only had one team member against two O2 team members.  He shouted out to his supporters on the side line for the time gap.  It was more than two minutes. 

Then the fireworks began.  On the next few hills, Webb destroyed the peloton with some hard attacks.  After catching his wheel, I looked back and all we had was T. Linck.  Webb and Linck began their rotation, while I grabbed wheel.  (Being experienced bike racers, both of them knew I had no interest in contributing to the effort, since my teammates were in the break.) 

Three quarters into the lap we looked ahead and Webb saw his teammate was dropped from the break with only a short distance to the finish.  Alarmed, Webb began asking everyone he could for the breaks location.  On the course’s second-from-the-last major climb, Webb was told that the gap was only 29 seconds. 

I moved ahead of Linck and Webb during the climb, since I noticed that they were feeling the effects of their efforts.  (This was where I made a big mistake and corrected it quickly.)  Looking at the pain in Linck’s face I got soft and told Webb “If you catch the break, I’ll give you the win… just don’t make me look bad”.  WOW… What did I just do???  I’ve done this in the past??? If Cahn finds out, I’m toast!  I quickly slowed on the hill and told Webb,” I need to race for the win… game on”.  He smiled.

On top of the climb, Webb and I distanced ourselves away from Linck.  Webb attacked on the decent, and that’s when I looked up and saw Dega, Cahn and Cole.  CRAP!!!  We were coming hard and Webb had new life.  When we caught the group, Webb slowed, Linck was able to hook on, and I moved to the front.

At the front, going into the last climb to the finish line, I looked into the eyes of Cole and said “you’re going to be a problem aren’t you”. He smiled.  Not knowing how my teammates were feeling, I increased the tempo during the first of the two stage climb.  I looked back and saw Cole trying to close the small gap I created.  At the crest of the first stage, I increased my tempo again and noticed that I was not going be caught.

Knowing that my daughter, Eva, was watching at the finish, I threw in some theatrics by pumping my fist.  She thought it was great, my wife rolled her eyes, and I just smiled, since Team O2 just executed another strong team finish and victory. 

Results: 1) J. Ignash, 2) C. Webb, 3) N. Cole, 4) M. Dega, 5) T. Linck, 6) M. Cahn 12) N. Laughton

2013 Lumberjack 100

While James Ignash and the rest of team O2 were kicking butt at the Cherry Roubaix race on Saturday, I was at the Lumberjack 100 mountain bike race ( near Manistee.

 For the LJ 100, I set three goals; 1) to finish, 2) to finish without being completely spent and 3) to finish less than 10 hours.  I followed a 12-week training program developed by Chris Eatough (

RACE DAY began with the “not-so-mandatory” 6:30 am rider meeting.  While on my way to the mass start I saw a familiar 02 jersey – it was Al Lake.  Al is a LJ 100 veteran and gave me tips regarding the start.  He advised that we start on the left so we don’t get pinched on the inside as we turned from pavement to the trail in a clockwise direction. 

 At the start, nearly 400 riders took off in a sprint.  I stayed on Al’s wheel as he safely led me to the single track.  As soon as we got on the dusty trail, I was amazed how many riders continued to push it at max power and redline their heart rates.  I kept my heart rate down and settled into a comfortable pace. 

 The first 33 mile lap felt good.  The dusty trail made breathing tough at times but I felt strong after L1.  A quick bottle change from Mary and the rest of my “pit crew” and I was off for lap 2. 

 During L2 I conserved energy by allowing gravity to give my legs intermittent reprieves on the descents.  A crash on a sandy decent and a broken chain cost me about 15 minutes to repair.  Considering the lost time, I was happy with L2. 

 I had 67 miles behind me and fresh bottles for L3.  On the first climb I realized I may suffer on this last lap.  I coasted on most descents to conserve energy.  Although my legs felt good, my upper body started to feel the cumulative effect of the race with about 20 miles to go.  With about 15 miles to the finish, my handlebar clipped a tree and I sailed over the bike; no permanent harm to man or machine.  I ultimately crossed the finish line at mile 100 in one piece and accomplished my goals.

 In summary, the LJ 100 was a great experience.  Although the route is sandy with a lot of climbing and steep descents, I would not consider it technical.  It was great starting with Al Lake who guided me safely during the first treacherous mile.  His endurance was evident as he climbed past me as I pushed my bike up a sandy section towards the end of the race.  My pit crew of Mary and a couple other family members made the race a very special day. 

 Feel free to contact me with any questions,

 See these links for more info:


Mark Boden

New page for race recaps

If anyone is interested in providing me with a race recap, I’ll post it to the club’s website.  Paul Skorupskas submitted me with a great piece highlighting his race at Cone Azalia (CAT3).  I’m going to post the recaps under the Race heading, within a new page I created titled The 2013 Red Tail Recap.

Please contact me with questions, concerns or new ideas.

2013 Cone Azalia Road Race Recap – CAT3

Another Cone-Azalia race has come and gone and now the road racing season is officially underway in Michigan. For those who are not familiar with the race course, it takes place in Milan, MI, is a pancake flat 10 mile circuit race course, typically very windy and 40% dirt roads whose conditions vary from year-to-year. Aside from being a very difficult race, the pre-race decisions that go into what kind of bike to use (road or CX) whether or not to use race wheels, what kind of tires to run, etc. add another interesting wrinkle to race that reminds of last fall during CX season. My setup this year was the same as last year, road bike, clincher training wheels with 24mm Vittoria Pave tires with reinforced sidewalls. This is the same setup that I used last year when I won the Cat 4 race so why mess with something works. The rest of the team was on a mix of CX bike with road tires and varying widths. Seems everyone has their favorite setup.This year is the inaugural year for O2 elite race team and Cone-Azalia brought out most of the racers so that we had good representation in the Cat 3, 35+ and 45+ fields as well as some racers spread out throughout the other categories.Jerry Gase, Doug Burcicki and myself showed up to the line to race the cat 3 race. With 3 similarly strong racers our plan was simple. Attack! Attack early, counterattack and continue attacking the field. The race really starts strong every year once the field hits the first dirt section about .5 mile into the course. This year was no different. We had a few marked riders on other teams and they did not disappoint driving the pace as soon as we crossed the train tracks and hit the dirt section. The pace was fast, but Jerry and Doug took turns covering the mini-breaks and bringing them back while I waited. This continued for most of the first lap until the pace really slowed on the drag to the start/finish into the headwind when no one wanted to pull the field.Eventually a rider had a enough and put in a little attack. Our team was content to let him hang out front for a while where we could see him. He looked to be getting a good enough lead that we needed to start thinking about bringing him back even though it was early in the race. However right as we all made the first turn of the second lap, the entire field including the mini break was stopped by a train. A new experience for me in this race. In any case, we now had gruppo compacto right at the beginning of the second time through the first dirt section. Immediately after the gates went up, some teams put in a big attack and got off the front, but Jerry or Doug were able to make there way into this break as well. Within a mile that break was brought back which meant that it was my turn to put in a big attack. I gave it a good jump and quickly found myself off the front with a substantial lead. Getting some rest in the tailwind section and finding that my lead had grown after exiting the second dirt section I started to think about pacing and staying away for the rest of the race. Little did I know what I was in for.For the next 6 miles I got my pacing down but also realised in the carnage that is the chattering roads of Cone-Azalia I lost my second water bottle. With little water remaining on a hot day and no reserve I thought better of trying to ride the next 30+ miles solo and decided and slow down and go back to the group, re-group and we’d try again later.Fast forward to the fourth lap, the eventual winner put in a huge attack that really blew up the field. We had Doug and Jerry following so I stayed back wondering if they were gone for good. However, I could see that he was getting away and so I decided that I should try to bridge up. Coming through the second dirt road section I started picking people off, and found out that the leader was up the road along with a group of two chasing him down. Coming out of the final dirt section on the 4th lap, I found myself solo in 4th and decided I need to work as hard as I can to bridge up to the chase group. After a very difficult 10min effort I was able to bridge up to Clay Monahan (one of the strongest breakaway riders in the field) and Brian Wachlarz. We worked well together sharing the workload to try to catch the leader on the 5th and final lap, but when it became apparent that we wouldn’t be able to catch him was time to try to conserve energy for the sprint. Clay put in a really good contest for the sprint and took the 2nd place finish while I had to settle for 3rd thanks to some tired legs.We certainly achieved our goal or racing well as a team, making our presence well known in the field that day and putting a racer on the podium. Some big highlights of the day were having racing together for the first time this year with some great teammates, getting a podium, 3 racers in the top 10 of the cat 3 field, no flats by anyone on the team in the most treacherous road race on the calendar and of course seeing Jim Ignash in the 45+ field soloing by our field at top speed for the win in the 45+ division.Great day of racing for the team and many thanks to everyone who helped put on the Cone-Azalia road race. Another year of another fantastic event

Cone-Azalia Classic Road Race

Our racers performed well this past weekend in Milan.   We scored a win in the Masters’ 45s (Jim Ignash) and three other Podium places (Masters 35’s, Tony Bruley; Category 3, Paul Skorupskas; Cat 5,  Alexander VanLeuven), as well as a number of other placings.   We were definitely noticed for our presence and team work.  All the details will be posted on our web site shortly.

Race Team:  As was reviewed at the Annual meeting, we are putting additional focus on a results oriented race team. The Cat 2/3/Masters team (aka Elite or A team) is about providing a race team within the club for those racers who want to make a more significant committment to achieving team results. Mike Dega is the team captain. As our club riders progress and become more accomplished, they’ll know there is place for them in the same club that helped them develop and will be less likely to look elsewhere to take the next step. The race team wears the same basic jersey, but with slightly different trim and some additional sponsors, Trek and Bontrager.
For those Cat 4,5 racers that have a goal of progressing to at least Cat 3, let Alex Huyghe, Cat 4/5 race captain, know.  Lets start identifying those racers and help them achieve their goals. The Cat 2/3/Elite/A team will work with racers who want to step up their performance.  We have some limited ability to add racers in 2013, and the more we know about racers’ goals, the better we can plan for 2014. The minimum expectation is achieving Category 3 as well as committing to racing at least 10 races per year (not including training and Waterford) with a focus on achieving team results.
Team O2 / Cadieux Bicycle Club continues to be a great club to learn to race and develop, and welcomes the new and occasional racer.  If you’re learning to race, don’t forget to take advantage of the knowledge and experience of the “trackies” in the club.  Track Captain Dave Hicken is your starting point contact.

Results are posted for the Ann Arbor Training Series – Race #3

O2 / Cadieux Bike Club comes out swinging Sunday:

Tony ripped it up in Ann Arbor… After sharing some racing knowledge during the Club’s Cross Winds Clinic on Saturday, Tony went out to Ann Arbor Sunday morning and finished 4th in the A race.  Great Job Tony, we expect nothing less:)

Then a new member, Jeremy Meyersick, finished first in the 4/5 race.  WOW…  Welcome to the Club!  A great start to the new season. 


Saturday, April 20th – Cross Wind Clinic

I’m not talking about a ride leaving from Crosswinds Mall, I’m talking about how to ride and race in the wind. Cross winds create unique challenges and opportunities during a ride or race.  
The Clinic will begin in Stony Creek Metro Park at 2:00pm.  We will meet in the building located at the boat launch and spend 20-30 mins talking and then ride.
This ride will is primarily designed to train the space between  your ears,  training  your legs and  aerobic system will be secondary priority.  There may be stopping  to explain things and/or yell at you like a grouch old bike racer does. 
Topics we’ll cover include…
o   Knowing which way the apparent wind is coming from 
o   Knowing which way to pull off
o   How to avoid getting “spit out” in a crosswind
o   How to ride in an Echelon
o   What the doorman in the echelon does and  how he can make your ride tolerable or miserable
o   What side of the road/wind to attack on
o   How a team can split the field in a cross wind
I encourage all those racing this season or interested in racing attend.
Mark Cahn