Ah yes…the 49ers old home is being reduced to a rubble pile. However, the former World War 2 rubble pile is still going strong. Candlestick Point Recreation area, the old military dump site, is still hosting races on its sandy courses. It was billed as Tom Simpson’s last weekend of racing before Murphy Mack takes over the Superprestige. A legacy was ending. Great job by Tom and his crew for all these years.
With the 49ers gone it seems like there is a little less broken glass on the course and in the parking lot. the weeds are getting bigger and I met some of them first hand while racing. It was a small field for the 35+ A’s, since there was SS Worlds and CXLA the same weekend. I was hoping for a podium spot….hoping. I got a second row start and was fast off the line. I settled into a group chasing Murray Swanson..as usual. Henry Kramer was leading the charge, but going very unHenrylike, i.e. slow. I finally made a risky pass on four riders in front of me right before the steep hill. Problem was I went a little too fast, clipped the inside pole and lost momentum going up the hill. Everybody stacked up behind me. I feel bad. Henry cured me out. I got going again…a little embarrassed.
Once again my legs gave out trying to chase Murray. I got dropped by Eric Hill and then tried to settle in with Mundelius – bye,bye John. Finally got in with a group of 4 and was just trying to hang on. One thing that happened as the race wore on was I was getting stronger and stronger. Maybe those 60 minute races in Sac were doing some good. Problem is the race was winding down and I had limited time left. I accelerated around 2 of the guys in the group and sat on another…waiting for the sprint finish. maybe I should have attacked earlier. 4th and 5th were sitting right in front of us.
Oh well…the sprint came and I caught him looking over the wrong shoulder. I went left and he swung into me to block. I went right and he did the same thing. Left again and he chopped my wheel. I sat up. In a professional race it would have been erratic sprinting and he would have been relegated. I chatted with him at the finish about it and the 5th place finisher stated, “Anything goes in cross so just shut the f–k up”. Hmmm…that didn’t sit well with me. I looked him up and he is a strong rider and just coming out of the B’s to the A’s. I am sure I will see him again and see if his “theory” holds true when it is him going into the tape. Hehe… I’m really not that type of racer and may be one of the reasons I don’t win a lot. You really have to be aggressive out there.
No photos that I could find. I ended up 7th and was happy to be racing. Next year should be interesting….