This is the stuff we love: “I just wanted to say that today was without a doubt the best race of the season for me. Best course, with lots of gnarly climbs, a bit of technical stuff and lots of fast, flowing greasy sections. Best spectators as well, with people cheering all through the course, and everyone obviously enjoying themselves.”

“Thank you again for an amazing day for the family and all racers, I really appreciate everything you do and I know everyone else is so thankful for all your hard work!”

Mazda – COTR – Newsletter 2016 #13 – Cleaned and prepped by Muc Off.

Double headers are TOUGH. They are tough on bodies, bikes, people, weekends, “free time”, equipment, supplies and resources. Not to mention…VOLUNTEERS! What they are as well are AWESOME!! Spend the whole weekend surrounded by like minded people riding 2 amazing courses over two days in GREAT weather. Thanks to everyone, Racers, Spectators, Sponsors and especially Volunteers that made the Nanaimo double header SO WICKED!!

With 2 races….also comes a BIG Newsletter. Enjoy the read.

The Warm Up
· Before you read anything more in this newsletter check this Video out by Simon Crieghton from Sunday’s Kona Kup if you have not seen it yet. The overhead shots are AMAZING!!

· If you love stats this one might be interesting to you. My Garmin Fenix 3 records steps. On a typical shop work day (without a run) I am between 9,000-11,000 steps. On a day when I am not at the shop (and don’t run) like yesterday after the race I was a low 7800 steps. On COTR race days….Saturday was 19,297 steps and Sunday was 20,332. Double a normal day. On the mid summer’s night race day I hit 29,000 for the day.

· Special thanks to Harris Mazda supplying an additional Mazda CX-5 for display at the start line.

· Sean Voight from Mazda sent us a link to his photos. Mostly unedited:

· Reminder. Your race number from the weekend (if you were here) is your race number for the last race BUT you still have to 1) REGISTER and 2) SIGN in to get your timing chip. People were showing up to the start line on Sunday with no timing chip as they thought they were just good to go without signing in….etc……NOT the case!!

· Along with timing Patrick Burnham had the camera out a bit this weekend. Check it. From Patrick: “I was able to get some shots at the races this weekend. And Mike took my camera for a walk at Hot Cross Bunnies.” They’re up at There’s also some from farmer bills up there.

COTR Segments
· T-Shirt Inventory after the weekend stands at: Kids: 1 Size 6 and 1 Size 8. Women’s: 2 Small, 2 Medium, 1 Large. Men’s: 4 Small, 19 Medium, 16 Large. LAST chance to get your COTR 2016 shirts will be at the Series Final.

· Lost and Found………I need another box or a bigger one. Ended up with 2 sets of wheels… guy came back for his JUST in time before I left. Saturday we had Nick Kupiak’s bike that he left behind. Last chance to claim your stuff will be at the Series Final.

· Some first time podium placers over the weekend. A BIG SHOUT OUT to: Matthew Evans, Lucy Schick, Lauren Marshall, Eva Leikermsoer, Megan Racher and Curtis Sclossberger who made it to the podium for the first time on Saturday at Hot Crossed Bunnies. Also to Evan Soucy and Josie Welbourn for their first podiums at the Kona Kup. Josie again for her first win along with Aedan Crocker, Tony Waklin, Barry Beck and Felix Burke for making it to the top step of a COTR race over the weekend. And Breckin Nowack for his first Intermediate podium. Awesome competition!

Warm Down

WE LOVE GOALS so were pumped that 529 Garage registered 142 bikes over the double header weekend. Thanks to everyone that took the time to get their bikes registered. Bike theft SUCKS and anything we can do to help get a stolen bike back or prevent a theft the better. You can still register you bikes at their site. Also if you registered one of your N+1 bikes over the weekend but still have your, Road, Fat, DH, XC, Commuter, Trainer, Winter, Fondo, Gravel, E, Old-CX, or cruiser at home you can still add it into your profile. Anything we can do to slow down or stop theft.
More information at

Congratulations to LONG time COTR racer and MIVA club member, Dave Morris for winning the KONA Private Jake at the Kona Kup.


In newsletter #13

1. Saturday-Hot Crossed Bunnies. BEBAN PARK. Re-Cap

2. Saturday Night-Social at White Sails. Short Re-Cap

3. Sunday-Kona Kup. BOWEN PARK. Re-Cap

4. Mini-Interviews

5. Looking ahead to the LAST COTR race of the Season. Saanich Fairgrounds.

1. Saturday-Hot Crossed Bunnies. Beban Park. Re-Cap

From Ron Hewitson MIVA Race Director

Thanks to:
1. The weather Gods for raining at the appropriate time and being nice when it was convenient for us.

2. Everyone from MIVA who came out and supported the club by serving the greater cycling community. Special mention to Patrick Burnham who bravely fought through his illness and helped with Friday set-up AND timing on Saturday. What a champ! Chris Cameron for stepping in as Medical Director and as Course Marshall. Phil, President Mike for rallying the troops, Hilary, Kyomi and Lori for working both registration and timing. If something needed to get done, people jumped in without asking. That means a lot.

3. Norm. For being such a great mentor. There are so many details putting on a race and when you only do this once a year, notes help but they only can take you so far . Thanks for being so patient.

4. Loved the turnout! Loved the course too, super fun with the sandy sections.

5. Pacific Mazda & Harris Mazda for series sponsorship.

Norm adding in here. If you missed the photo of Janna Gillick’s sweet home made number pouches…..designed perfectly to carry your new race number and a bunch of safety pins I am re-posting it here. These were super sweet with each one having a different internal lining. Mine has skulls….so … know….I love it! Thanks VERY much to Janna for taking her time to make these for all the podium finishers at COTR #6.

2. Saturday Night-Social at White Sails. Short Re-Cap

After a long muddy day at Hot Crossed Bunnies what better way to unwind then with a freshly brewed beer from White Sails Brewpub! Saturday night brought a relaxing social sponsored by Mid Island Velo Association, Rock City Cycles and White Sail Brewpub. Free beer flowed for most of the evening as racers, volunteers and organizers reviewed the days’ events and prepared for the day ahead all while enjoying a giant fireplace and good company. There must be something in the beer at White Sails because at least one racer, Bill McMillian, had the strength to jump from 14th the first day of racing to crack the top ten the next! Just saying you might want to rethink your recovery drink! Thanks to all who came out and the fine staff at White Sails.

Rock City Cycles

3. Sunday-Kona Kup. BOWEN PARK

I would like to thank the City of Nanaimo for their continued support of Cyclocross Racing in Nanaimo and Cross on the Rock and Norm Thibault for another great season of racing!

This years’ Rock City Cycles Kona Kup was the smoothest to date, thanks to all the volunteers and sponsors.
We had an amazing team for set up which makes a huge difference since we can’t set up the night before, Thank you Paul, Shep, Derek, Del, Mitch, Dale, Brandi, Sean, and Doug.

Brandi and Del also did double duty and along with Helen and Lisa made registration seamless, thank you!

This is the first year I didn’t have to do timing at the Kona Kup, thanks to Patrick, Hilary, Lisa and Mitch!

Colin Ferguson for attending to Medical.

Thanks to Dik Cox (the Legend) at Kona for the stepping up again with a Private Jake and many other prizes to give away!

Special thanks to Pete Creighton for not just sponsoring though Muc-off and Cycles Lambert for category prizes but for coming out and spending the whole day pressure washing bikes!! Also thank you to Simon Creighton for his video work!

Thank you to Steve Pukesh from Live to Play for the draw prizes prizes.

Thank you to Andrea from AJ’s food truck for feeding the starving racers.

I love seeing the racers faces when they finish their pre ride and they have a giant smile, I’m kinda biased but I think the Bowen course is one of my favorites. It’s a technical course that makes great use of natural terrain. The interesting stat is that this year we had almost no DNF’s, (Ranked #2) making it one of the “Tamest Races” yet it still holds record for “Hardest Races” with 3 of the top ten positions!! I guess Cross on the Rockers are just getting tougher!!

Thanks to all who came out and raced, cheered or heckled, see you next year!!


Rock City Cycles

4. Mini-Interviews

You know we love a good mini-interview and we hope you do too. With the Kona Kup at Bowen park having an earned reputation of being one VERY TOUGH course we asked 4 questions to 4 riders that DNF’ed the last time a race was held at Bowen park in 2014 what the difference was this year.

The 4 Questions.
1. The Kona Kup has a reputation for being one of the toughest courses in BC. In 2014 you DNF’ed this race. Bowen Park has 3 of the top 10 (out of 70+ races) ranks in the DNF stats list. Yet this past Sunday, on day 2 of a double header it scored the easiest/least DNF’s since 2010. The stats rank it as #2 tamest races of ALL TIME. What was the difference this time?

2. What do you prefer. The MUD of Saturday or the vertical of Sunday?

3. What tires did you run on Saturday/Sunday.

4. Any changes this past Sunday that helped you finish the Kona Kup this year?

Rider: Roland Rabien. Pro Kitty Racing.

1. I think people have become aware of the ‘Least Reliable’ list and how easy it is to get on that list and hard it is to get off. People don’t quit anymore, unless they physically can’t continue. Series and team standings are motivators too, can’t quit, need to get every possible point.

2. I’ll take mud over hills, 5 years ago it would have been the opposite.

3. My bike is in the shop so I can’t go look, but I’m pretty sure they are Kenda Kwickers set up tubeless. Same tires both days, probably a little less pressure Sunday because I forgot to check.

4. I slowed down. About 20 places behind where I usually am, but at least I left in one piece.

Rider: Emily Johnston. Trail Bikes.

1. I really can’t say for sure. For me it was that this time I’d learned what a hard
course it was from past experiences. I reigned it in just a tad more on the
descents so that I would be able to ride a clean race and finish with a smile on
my face.(Not that I wasn’t smiling last time:) )

2. Both courses were fantastic. Some of my fave’s of this year, but I would have to
say that the vertical of Sunday was more fun for me. I loved the fact that there
were some tricky tech section throughout the course as well as the climbs that
made the course just that much more challenging.

3. The Bontragers that came with my bike???? (I don’t know what they are)

4. I really had a great experience trying to stay on Carey and Janna’s wheel. It was
awesome to learn new techniques during the race by means of watching what
they were doing and figuring out what I could do to hold on for just that little bit
longer. I realized that the power that I had been putting out of the corners wasn’t
really all the power I had, watching them showed me that in order to keep up I
needed to not only go as fast as I could on the flats and the hills but that I needed
to do the same in the corners.

Rider: Nicholas Kupiak. Broad Street Cycles.

1. Unfortunately I am part of that DNF statistic from the last time Bowen Park was used and the only difference I really noticed was the weather. When it’s directly raining on that course while we’re racing it just makes everything a little bit harder as the grass turns to true mud and the sand doesn’t hold up like it did this year. More mud and more sand getting thrown around always equates to more mechanicals with grit finding its way into the gears on the ascents and the brakes on the descents.

2. Usually I prefer the muck and mud but I just can’t deny how incredibly fast and flowy Sunday was. Even on a day where it didn’t feel like the fitness was there for me, Bowen was just a fun course to let the bike go and find the limits of your handling whether it was on the descents, through the trees, or rallying the sand.

3. I was running the tubeless version 700×33 Specialized Terra Pros. They proved themselves well in the mud at last years Topaz Park race and have been my preferred tire since. Expecting more rain and mud on Sunday I ran the same setup, but if I had the opportunity to switch I think Bowen was the perfect course for something more like the Specialized Tracer Pro.

Rider: Roanne English. Naked Factory Racing.

1. The Kona Kup is definitely a tough course! I crashed pretty badly in 2014 when my breaks stopped working a few laps into the race. Not only does the course have a lot of climbing, but it also has a lot of descending and some of those descents were pretty scary for me when I was first racing. I think this year having more experience and my Naked bike with disc breaks made me much more confident; some guy yelling at me on a loud speaker didn’t hurt either…

2. I’m still a bit too chicken to fully take advantage of the vertical on Sunday’s course, and besides playing in the mud is my favourite thing about cyclocross so Saturday wins the weekend in my books.

3. My tires for both days were 35mm Kenda Kwicker cross tires. They are the set that Sam put on my bike last year and I’ve never considered changing them.

4. I didn’t make any changes for Sunday. I really could have used some more legs but I think those got left in the mud somewhere after Saturday’s race…

5. Looking ahead to the LAST COTR race of the Season. Saanich Fairgrounds.

We will fire a FULL Pre-Race Newsletter in your in-Box NEXT week with ALL the important details you will need to know.

In the meantime clean your number and put it someplace safe and do these 5 things:

1) Check out your series standings: Take your note pad and add up your top 6 spots so far. Do some calculations. Double points at the last race… who do you have to beat and by how much?

2) Check out your team standings:

3) Register for the race:

4) Watch this edit again:

5) And register all your bikes that were not registered over the weekend before someone rips them off:

Oh yeah….and get a bit of recovery in BEFORE you fire up your last block of training. Time to PEAK!



Finn getting it done at Hot Crossed Bunnies.
Finn getting it done at Hot Crossed Bunnies.
THE DOUBLE HEADER ReCap (4th or 3rd to Last Newsletter of 2016)