The ARCO Criterium produced by Velo Allegro was scheduled for May 13th, 2012. Mother's Day for 2012 and death to all bike races. Moms get more play than dads or maybe dads get to chose to race and moms can't say anything on his day. The pre registration looked light but the early fields didn't look too bad at Velo Allegro home race course which is called the "Hughes" course. The "Hughes" course is near the intersection of the 405 and the 710 freeways in north Long Beach. The course is a wide open thing with very wides streets that make the turns easy. The distance is about a mile. Velo Allegro did this old thing of a common purse for everyone and scored separate for Socal points between the 55s and 60s. Come on! That is way old hat. CBR doesn't even do that any more. The 60s pay the same entry fee but have to race down so to speak to get to the 55+ purse. Lousy set up.
The pre reg for the 55s was low and really low for the 60s. The hitters from Spy Swami's and Sho Air were not there and of course UC Cyclery was riding light with a race so far north of SD County like in Long Beach. Santa Clarita Velo had a good squad going in and of course Velo Allegro would have all their racers. Paramount would have 4 racers and all of their 60+ trifecta. I did say Sho Air didn't have their hitters here but was represented by Dan Nicolette. All of the 55+ Sho Air riders are really good so Dan riding by himself would still be someone to reckon with.
Rick Lilliberg moved down from Washington about 8 or 9 years ago and won his 1st SCNCA race that he did in Glendale in front of Dreamworks studio. Rick was on fire for a number of years and won 60+ Socal Cup in his first year. Rick hasn't raced with us in years but decided to come out and give it a try again. Nice to see Rick out there.
|Alta Wright(McKee) from Bucksnort, Alabama (early 40s)|
|55/60+ racers getting the "lowdown" at the ARCO Criterium 2012|
The breakers were caught but another group formed almost immediately and Fred was again part of this. Fred really has developed recovery powers. He would be a great points racer on the track. This new group got a gap again and this time the group included Kal Szkalak. There must have been 5 or 6 riders. Alex Collins saw this as an opportunity and came across a 100 meter gap. I got right on his wheel for a tow and Steve Diamond got on my wheel. Once all were together it was a mess and Kal is very particular about who he breaks with. If he doesn't like the mix, he won't work. It didn't take long before everyone was together again. The pace eased a bit with some flare ups though the 2nd 5 miles we averaged 25.1 mph after going 24.8 for the 1st 5. OK speed seeing that this is a fast course but not overpowering.
|Early break action- Fred Hoblit, Dan Nicolette & Lee Romans|
|Mid race action in the 55/60+ categories|
|Alex Collins chasing with Kirk Freeman riding his wheel|
|Howard Miller chasing|
The overall pace was about 24.9 mph for the race on a fast course so things weren't pushed like it has been at some races this year. No close calls or any crashes. I am finding out that criteriums are one of the safest forms of bicycle riding. There was a crash at Fiesta Island if you can believe that. All the tangles with automobiles on training rides have been awful this year. I will take a criterium any day. All photos and the video are compliments of Maki Yamazaki. Thank you! That's all for now. Train hard and race safe!
|Velo Allegro Crit (Rank 1.0)|
|1||219074||Leo Pettus||Paramount Racing||14|
|2||49424||howard miller||Paramount Racing||11|
|3||180386||John McKee||Paramount Racing||10|
|4||64127||Rick Lilleberg||South Bay Wheelmen||9|
|5||126351||Steve Bernede||Team Werks||8|
|6||61278||Mario Seri||Velo Club LaGrange||7|
|8||195498||Donald Kimper||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||5|
|9||203244||Cary Alpert||South Bay Wheelmen||4|
|10||50406||Michael Edwards||Velo Club LaGrange||3|
|Velo Allegro Crit (Rank 1.0)|
|1||26090||Daniel Nicolette||Sho-air/Rock 'n Road||14|
|2||16360||Fred Hoblit||Santa Clarita Velo||11|
|3||54522||KAL SZKALAK||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||10|
|4||64439||Nelson Alaan||Cal-Pacific Export Packers / LV||9|
|5||93812||Donald Denegal||Velo Allegro||8|
|6||36299||Dan Valentin||Citrus Valley Velo||7|
|8||46255||Alex Collins||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||5|
|9||230085||Albert Shorts||Velo Allegro||4|
|11||49110||Rino Barbagiovanni||Santa Clarita Velo||2|
|12||50532||deogracias asuncion||South Bay Wheelmen||1|
|13||52251||Ricky Shorts||Velo Allegro||0|
|14||202041||mark planellas||Southern California Velo||0|
|15||178495||Steve Diamond||Spy-Swami's Cycling Team||0|
|16||66553||John Sinz||OCW/Paramount Racing||0|
|18||12354||Kirk Freeman||Santa Clarita Velo||0|
|19||61353||Reed Moore||UC Cyclery/JW Floors||0|
|20||271566||Alex Gonzalez||Velo Allegro||0|
|21||47314||gary prideaux||Lightning Velo||0|
|22||9271||Pete Dern||Velo Club LaGrange||0|