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5/23/16 Directeur’s Chair

directeur-chair-mrc-200pxWe’re back with another edition of Directeur’s Chair! But this time we’re giving Jeremy a little break. As we await the BattenKill 2016 race reports from our Men’s and Women’s squads, we are taking this opportunity to talk about a couple of the events we have coming up.

On Saturday June 4th The Minuteman Road Club will present the 3rd Annual Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race in Harvard MA.. Starting and finish in historic Harvard Center racers will do laps on a 10 mile circuit on some of the nicest back roads and farming areas in central Mass.

 

Throughout the race everyone will tackle everyone’s favorite training climb, “Oak Hill” in Littleton Ma. Where on the middle lap of each race a KOM or QOM will be awarded and presented by Wachusett Brewing Company. (note: if a winner is under 21 years of age and for Cat 5, a medal will be given)
Registration and more information about the race are located at https://www.bikereg.com/ken-harrod-memorial-road-race

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A couple of weeks after the road race, the MRC will be presenting the 1st annual Wachusett Brewing Company Gran Fondo on Saturday June 18th. This event has a full day of fun lined up that guarantees a memorable day of cycling in the beautiful setting of Central Massachusetts.

FONDO_LOGO_250Plan on a fantastic ride that starts at the Wachusett Brewery in Westminster, MA then loops around country roads in the towns of Fitchburg, Ashburnham, Ringe,Westminster, Hubbardston, and Princeton summiting Wachusett Mountain, and makes its way back to the the brewery. Three routes (120km, 85km, and 60km) have been created to accommodate riders of all abilities that insure beautiful views and challenging terrain on quiet roads. All rides are punctuated with an after-ride party at the brewery where everyone can enjoy music, food, raffles, and of course Wachusett Beer!

All proceeds from the Fondo will be donated to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Springfield and the New England High School Cycling Association. For more information or to register please go to https://www.bikereg.com/wachusett-brewing-co-gran-fondo

Also for those who raced the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race, you are eligible for a $10 discount on the Fond entry fee, details on the discount can be found on the KHMRR race registration page.

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5/11/16 Directeur’s Chair

directeur-chair-mrc-200pxWe’re back with another edition of Directeur’s Chair. Celebrating again another strong weekend of racing at the The Myles Standish State Forest Road Race in Plymouth, MA we catch up with MRC Directeur Sportif Jeremy Cratty.

MRC: So Jeremy what color and model Skoda did you end up choosing? That’s four more wins for MRC at The Myles Standish Race, Congrats!!

Jeremy: I couldn’t afford a Skoda, so I bought a used moped from my crazy Uncle Fredo. The good news is we can use this for motor pacing…

MRC: Two wins in the Cat 4’s and the Women’s Cat 4. I’m thinking soon you’ll have a strong Cat 3 Men’s AND Women’s team.

J: Chris Gibson came out of nowhere to win the first Cat 4 race which was a nice surprise, with his buddy Nick Leger coming in 3rd and Kevin Teves grabbing 6th. Nick and Kevin’s reward for their hard racing was road rash for Nick and a private tour of Beth Israel Plymouth Hospital for Kevin. Sometimes you gotta take one for the team. Smartly, Sarah Shipley just rode away from the group to avoid sprinting into the Myles Standish Funnel Of Death. Also, don’t forget Chris Pare’s breakaway victory in the Cat 3 and Winslow Woodacre’s sprint win in the 2nd Cat 4 race. Winslow won by less than a tire width with a classic bike throw. He clearly benefitted from the “Bike Throw” clinic we held earlier in the season.

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MRC’s Winslow Woodacre wins with a bike throw!

MRC: Besides the four wins for the team you personally raced well. Three races and three “top tens” on the day for yourself. You’re becoming a regular Reggie Dunlop.

J: Yeah I grabbed 9th in both the Cat 3 and 45+. But my best result of the day was the surprising 8th place I somehow got in the Cat 4 race. That’s pretty hard to do when, a) you’re not a Cat 4, and b) I was watching from the sideline in civilian clothes. Luckily I didn’t get caught up in the crash…

MRC: Unfortunately with all the success it didn’t come with a little price in the Cat4A race.

J: Yeah our Sponsorship Director has some work to do, as we ruined a few brand new Lazer Z1 helmets (ugh and the AEROSHELLS!!!) and Verge Speedsuits. Hey at least we know they work… I’d like to wish Kevin Teves and Nick Leger a speedy recovery. Looking forward to having them back on the bike.

MRC: Looking ahead what’s next on the schedule? Anything that the team is really looking forward to?

J: There’s a couple of short easy races coming up in Battenkill (NY) and Killington (VT). I think they’re crits or something like that… And lets not forget about the 22nd edition of the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race that we are hosting. This will be our 3rd year running it in Harvard featuring everyone’s favorite, the Oak Hill climb. Free beer for the K(or)QoM winner of each race, which is always nice.

MRC: How about the Wachusett Gran Fondo we’ve been seeing advertised? What can you tell us about it?

J: Did I mention free beer? Actually it’s not totally free. But for a bargain price you get an incredible ride, with a Mt. Wachusett summit, great food, music, and of course lot’s of delicious Wachusett brew. It will be held on June 18th starting and finishing at the Wachusett Brewery in Westminster, MA. Registration and more information can be found on BikeReg.com at https://www.bikereg.com/31276 It will be an amazing day, lets make it happen people…

MRC: Anything else you’d like to add in closing?

J: The only concern we have with our success is the win bonuses are adding up at a staggering rate. Stay tuned for details on the first annual MRC Bake Sale.

Read Myles Standish 2016 race reports in the MRC racer’s own words: http://www.minutemanroadclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=7585&p=43414#p43414

REGISTRATION OPEN: 2016 Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race

For the third year in a row, the Minuteman Road Club has partnered with the Harvard Firefighter’s Association to put together the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race. The race will be held on Saturday, June 4th, 2016.

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The race course will be the same route as the 2015 edition.

There are a few additional changes to the 2016 edition as we try to build upon the success the race has had so far in Harvard:

  • Addition of a Women’s Cat P/1/2 field that will be run with the Women’s Cat 3/4 field. Each will have separate prize purses and different colored numbers to be able to distinguish the competitors in each field.
  • Addition of a Masters 55+ field that will be run with the Masters 45+ field. Each will have separate prize purses and different colored numbers to be able to distinguish the competitors in each field.

Important links:

Race flyer with information

Reg NOW at BikeReg and get more info

Awesome video of the race

4/26/16 – Directeur’s Chair

directeur-chair-mrc-200pxWe’re back with another edition of Directeur’s Chair. Celebrating another strong weekend of racing at the Quabbin Road Race in Ware, MA we catch up with MRC DS Jeremy Cratty.

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Mark Miller, photo: ©Pete Talbot

MRC: Jeremy, Congrats on yet another weekend of great racing! You must be pleased with the way your race squads have come together and race as a team.

Jeremy: It’s truly amazing what people will do for free stuff. Dangle a nice helmet in front of them and a free beer at the end of the race and they’ll do anything… Seriously, there’s 2 ways to win an amateur bike race, solo away at 6 watts/kg or have a team frustrate the living crap out of everyone until they give up. This past weekend we did each!

MRC: Is there a standout moment in the race that comes to mind?

J: In the Cat 3 race at Quabbin, we executed the very underrated “alley-opp” technique where we send a worker up the road in a break, and then the team leader bridges across to their teammate, uses them like a piece of trash to be discarded, then goes on to win the race.  I was the piece of trash, Mark Miller was the winner.  Last time I saw that executed properly was between Alejandro Valverde and Nairo Quintana in the Vuelta (which is a fair comparison I think)

Quabbin 2016 Finish!

Dave Mingori, photo: ©Pete Talbot

MRC I noticed that Dave Mingori scored his second win in as many weeks. Looks like you’ll have a new Category 3 racer to add to the squad.

J: Yes Dave’s on a mission since last year’s GMSR, definitely one of the most improved racers on the team. And it’s good we’ll have a new guy in the Cat 3 because the regulars are getting sick of me sending them to the front.
MRC: Also, one of your new editions Josh Burgle looks to be on good form already. I’m assuming he’s soon to join the Category 3 ranks.

J: I’ve been “racing” against Josh for years on the Monster Bullet-train. I always thought he was a Cat 3 anyway. We have a word for those types of guys, I’ll leave it at that 🙂

MRC: Lets talk about your Category 2 squad. Initially it was just Patrick Collins but now with Joe Magro coming back to MRC and Jason Croteau joining the club it looks like you’re going to be quite the force in the 2’s.

J: Actually we have several other Cat 3’s very close to making the jump. I actually told Patrick to slow down before he mistakenly upgrades to Cat 1. Next thing you know MRC will be a Continental Pro team and I’ll have to quit my day job and buy a Skoda.

MRC: Anything else you’d like to add in closing?

J: I’m going to need a massage after all this typing.

MRC: Maybe you need to look into a team soigneur?

J: YES!!!!!

NEW: Directeur’s Chair

directeur-chair-mrc-200pxWelcome to a new feature on the MRC website called Directeur’s Chair. Throughout the season we’ll speak with members of our racing teams and get recaps from our new Directeur Sportif, Jeremy Cratty.

Below is an interview we did with Jeremy on the heels of a successful weekend at the Chris Hinds Memorial Criterium in Rhode Island.

MRC: Jeremy first off, thank you for your taking the time for this interview. More importantly congrats on being the first ever Directeur Sportif for The Minuteman Road Club. You must be very excited.

Jeremy: Yes I’m very excited. I’ve always wanted to be in a position where I could tell people what to do, no questions asked.

MRC: We’re a few weeks into the 2016 season. What are your thoughts so far?

J: I’m definitely feeling an increased excitement around road racing, which was the point of the whole program. I get emails everyday with questions about races, strategies, who is on form, what the weather going to be like, should they use chamois cream. You know, important stuff.

MRC: Is there anything that has surprised you that you weren’t expecting?

J: Well I expected some good results, but even I was surprised when we came away from Chris Hinds with 2 victories. It was especially sweet because we came up with detailed strategies and the team executed them exactly as planned. It’s further proof that team racing delivers superior results than an “everyone for themselves” approach you typically see in amateur racing.

MRC: What are you looking forward to for the rest of the season?

J: More wins and more Wachusett beer consumed! Seriously though, winning an early season crit is one thing, but I can’t wait to plan some tactics for bigger races like Quabbin and Battenkill. Should be EPIC!!!!!

MRC: Any other comments you’d like to add in closing?

J: Stop reading this and go do some hill repeats!!!!!

MRC: Thank you for your time Jeremy. Looking forward to talking with you throughout the season

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Welcome, 2016 MRC Sponsors!

It is with great pleasure that the Minuteman Road Club announces our official road race team sponsors for the 2016 season. Returning are the support of Landry’s Bicycles, Rudy Project, and Verge Sport. We are proud to announce our new road race team title sponsor Wachusett Brewing Company. Also supporting the Minuteman Road Club are Privateer Rum, Enterprise CarShare, Murphy’s Insurance, and Intra Systems.

2016 sponsor collage

Landry’s Bicycles – Full service bike shops in Boston, Norwood, Natick and Westborough. Everything the beginner or the pro would need, professional bike fitters, sales and service. The MRC’s oldest and most stalwart sponsor!

Wachusett Brewing Company – Wachusett Brewery founders Ned, Kevin and Peter developed a significant appreciation for beer while attending Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Adventures in biking, canoeing and hiking that led the trio to the Northern New England states allowed them to visit some of the first operating craft breweries. Armed with a “we can do this” attitude the three cast off from their careers in engineering and biology to found the Wachusett Brewing Co. in 1993. Wachusett Country Pale Ale was introduced to the beer fans of Massachusetts the next year after lots of experimenting to get the formula just right. When Wachusett opened, the three designed and built most of the equipment; did the brewing and filling, selling and delivering, and everything else that a small startup brewery needed.
Along the way the founders were joined by some of the most passionate and capable co-workers in the brewing industry. Wachusett Ales continue to be hand crafted with the finest ingredients available, bottled, canned and kegged in our Westminster facility. Wachusett Brewing Company has never strayed from the founder’s plan to brew and sell the freshest, highest quality beers possible.

Privateer Rum -America embodies freedom. And the men and women who served as privateers during our Revolution embodied it too. And passion. And a gritty, bare-knuckled determination to fight the good fight. And to profit from their success.
There was no easy way to win against the greatest sea power in the world. So privateers innovated. They changed the rules of engagement, and ultimately the outcome of the war.
Today, that same spirit drives us at Privateer Rum. A spirit that demands doing what you believe is right. Doing it well. And doing it your own way, even when this means defying convention.
Freedom. Innovation. Conviction. It’s in our DNA. It’s in our rum.

Enterprise CarShare – Enterprise CarShare is an automated way to rent a vehicle by the hour, the day, or overnight. A variety of makes and models are parked in your community – where you live, and where you work – and are accessible 24/7.

Murphy Insurance Agency – Murphy Insurance Agency is among the largest independent agents in Massachusetts with locations in Bolton, Groton, Harvard, Hudson, Marlborough, Medway and Mendon. We represent 29 companies and have access to many more. Where you purchase your insurance makes a difference. Murphy Insurance offers you one reliable relationship for safeguarding your financial stability – whether your needs are personal, business or both.

IntraSystems – IntraSystems empowers companies to deliver secure, on-demand access….anytime, anywhere. As a Citrix Platinum Solution Partner, our certified engineers design, deploy, implement, and maintain complex IT infrastructures throughout the U.S. Our mission is to provide secure application delivery, virtualization services, and secure network infrastructure solutions centered on the principles of excellence, service, and quality.

Rudy Project – Sunglasses, helmets, goggles and other gear. Rudy Project works in cooperation with athletes from all fields, listening to what they want and need – they never stop researching to find the latest and best materials available to realize cutting-edge products.

Verge Sport – The inspiration behind Verge Sport came from the clothing needs of an elite athlete. Racing in the European road cycling circuit throughout the early 1990s it became obvious to Michael Magur that the custom technical apparel needs of athletes were outpacing what was being delivered — the wheels turned and Verge Sport was born in 1996. Since those first orders on through to today, customer satisfaction has been at our core. Our goal is for you to be happy with not only the final product, but the entire ordering and communication process involved in bringing your design to life.

We look forward to another amazing season and want to thank all our sponsors for believing in us.

MRC Recognizes 2015 Achievements, Welcomes New Sponsors

Congratulations everyone, the awards dinner on January 23rd was a fantastic success just like our 2015 season.

Thanks to Jeremy Cratty for getting the International to take care of us again this year. What a great venue.
Thanks to Russ Campbell for putting together the slide show, award trophies and presentation.
Thanks to Mark Bernard for pulling together all the stats.

2015 was an amazingly successful season. Minuteman Road Club raced in 239 races resulting in 53 podiums and 151 top 10 finishes!

We recognized our achievements at the dinner with the following awards and winners:

  • U23 racer of the year – Patrick Collins had a great road season but it was just a precursor to an unbelievable cross season that culminated in 1st place in the season long NECXBAR series. 1st place in New England!!!
  • Top female racer of the Year – Megan Woodacre with 3 podiums in her 1st year of racing an outstanding way to start her road racing career.
  • Top male racer of the year – Brad Bradford progressed from Cat 5 to Cat 2 in 1 year and clocked up 7 wins, 3 2nd places and 1 3rd along the way. A quite remarkable season. What else is there to say? Well Brad certainly did with lots of praise for the club and and an impassioned farewell as he has moved back to Toronto.
  • Most improved – Winslow Woodacre with 2 wins and 3 other podiums in his 1st year road racing showed that there is a lot more to come.
Patrick Collins receives his Top U23 Award from Jeremy Cratty.

Patrick Collins receives his Top U23 Award from Jeremy Cratty.

Read More..

2015 Minuteman Road Club Cyclocross Race on 10/11/15

 

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It’s true CX weather now and the Minuteman Road Club’s annual cyclocross race, now in it’s sixth year at the Bolton Fair in Lancaster, coming up on Sunday October 11th! Your legs are fully rested from Holy Week and returning to the sanity of a grassroots race with smaller fields is just the ticket.

Winners of the men’s and women’s 1/2/3 race gets $300! Landry’s Bicycles has stepped up to the plate and is providing GENEROUS gift cards to the podium toppers in the non-elite races.

EVERY winner in each category will also get a fresh baked apple pie from Bolton Orchards!

More about payouts and other details of the race in our race flyer.

MRC CX is also part of the NEBRA CX BAR (Best All-Around Rider) Series, tracking points for 16 categories over 14 races.

Single speed racers: Harpoon Brewery is the beer sponsor for the Zanconato SSCX Series. Podium finishers will receive some of Harpoon’s delicious brew and winners of the SS races will also receive an apple pie!

You’ll be competing on grass, pavement, with the addition of some hoppable logs!

Don’t hesitate, get to BikeReg now – the 4/5 field is already full (there is a waitlist available) https://www.bikereg.com/2015-minuteman-road-club-cyclocross

RACE REPORT: KEN HARROD MEMORIAL ROAD RACE 2015 Received Rave Reviews!

The second edition of the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race presented by the Minuteman Road Club occurred on May 30th, 2015 in Harvard, MA. This was the second year the race was held in Harvard after 19 years of MRC presenting a road race in Sterling, MA.

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MRC’s Chris Pare rolls out of downtown Harvard, MA with the Cat 3 peloton.

There were two waves of races, with three in the early morning wave and another three in the late morning wave. This year’s edition included a completely new course including the famous Oak Hill climb, the addition of a P/1/2 race, and a KOM competition. The race helps benefit the Harvard Firefighters Association, and was aided by sponsorship from Murphys Insurance, Landrys Bicycles, 3Cross Brewing Company, Ameriprise Financial, and Sports and Physical Therapy Associates (SPTA). The weather was fantastic on the day, even a bit hot and dry for most riders that left many out of fluids by the end of the race.

The course was met with rave reviews, with comments of “Thank you for bringing back the VeryFine race course” from various long time racers, “What a race!” from the Cannondale team, and even people who could not make it like Adam Meyerson commenting that “Thank you, Minuteman Road Club, for bringing back the classic, combined “Harvard-Littleton” road course, running good distances, reasonable entry fees, and an actual $1000 prize list for the P/1/2 men’s field.”

In the early morning fields:

The Mens Cat 5 race stayed together for much of the race which led to a sprint finish, where Dek Tuttle came out 1st, with Johannes Stromski of Riverside Racing and Orlando Correa of Team Columbia close behind for 2nd and 3rd.

In the Womens 3/4, a four woman breakaway got away from the main pack pushed by a Green Line Velo with two women in the group, Regina Legge and Julie Van der Hoop, with Antonina Hafner of Harvard University and Jennifer McCarthy of Riverside Racing. In the end, Legge won the sprint, following by Hafner in 2nd, Van der Hoop 3rd, and McCarthy 4th. The pack sprint was won by Leslie Timm for 5th place.

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The Women’s 3 / 4 field approaches the turn onto Littleton Road in Harvard, MA.

Finally, the Mens Cat 4 race had the largest field of the day and plenty of strong up and coming riders in it. There were plenty of attacks, and on lap 3, a break of two riders looked like it might stick, but Minuteman Road Club and Greenline Velo pulled back the break by the top of Oak Hill. On the last lap, things stuck together as every rider seemed to gear up for the sprint. At the finish, Minuteman Road Club’s Brad Bradford slingshot around the field for the win, with Steven Edwards of PVC/CycleMania, Jeb Fowler of Linen/BCA, Jose Ordovas of Green Line Velo, and Josh Burgel of Bikeway Source/Bell Lap Racing taking 2nd through 5th place.

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MRC’s Kevin Teves (left) helps Brad Bradford (right) celebrate his Cat 4 victory.

In the late morning fields:

The Mens Cat 3 race turned into a slower and tactical race for the rest of the field due to a four man breakway getting away. After an early break was caught on the 2nd lap on Oak Hill, a second major break formed through a counter attack. Dawry Cabrera of NEBC, John Eckert of STAMPEDE, and Brendan Longe of Community Bicycle Racing got away. Although the pack did some work to try to bring back the break, it was not enough to catch it in the end as they were 1 minute ahead with a lap to go. Cabrera won with his own break to come across solo, followed by Eckert, and later Longe. Miles Billings of 545 took off on the last climb up Oak Hill to claim a clear 4th, and then Scott White of Rancourt & Co won the pack sprint to claim the last podium spot in 5th.

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Dawry Cabrera posts up as he crosses the line in his Cat 3 solo breakaway win.

The Masters 45+ field had a large field of very experienced riders ready to attack the course. There were many attacks, and the climb up Oak Hill on the 2nd lap was extremely fast paced and caused everyone to suffer. Shortly after, Tom Francis of Wheelworks Racing and Chris Crowell of Stage 1/fusionTHINK got away on a two man breakaway. No one thought it would last, but the pack didn’t work together to share the load of catching the break. By the beginning of the last lap, those two had a 1:40 lead on the pack and mostly had just each other to think about. Francis was able to pull away with a well-deserved win and Crowell getting a well-earned 2nd. Kurt Begemann of Castellli BRS attacked on the final steep part of Oak Hill and stayed away for 3rd, while Guillermo Herrera of Downeast Racing and Robert Campbell of Cycle Lodge grabbed the last two podium spots for 4th and 5th.

In the most highly anticipated race of the day, the P/1/2 field got off with a solid field. As usual, the high pace of the field caused many DNFs within the P/1/2 group as many dropped riders decided to save their energy for another day. Keith Kelly of ENGVT-UnTapped was able to get away on a solo breakaway with still 30 miles still to go. He was able to hold that lead until Brendan Rhim and Ansel Dickey (both of California Giant / Specialized) were able to pull themselves up to Kelly along with some of the rest of the field. In the finish, Rhim and Dickey were able to get a small gap and come in 1-2 for California Giant / Specialized. Kelly was able to summon enough energy to get 3rd, with Joseph Siegel of Grinta! p/b Best Buddies Challenge and Brendan McLaughlin of CCB Racing coming in 4th and 5th in a very tough race.

We look forward to hosting the 2016 edition of the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race, which will be on the same weekend (the Saturday after Memorial Day) which is Saturday June 4th 2016. Our plan is to have exact same course as 2015!

For complete race results, visit the 2015 Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race page on Road-Results.

See more of Katie Busick’s photos here.

Registration Open for the 2015 Ken Harrod Road Memorial Road Race

For the second year in a row, the Minuteman Road Club has partnered with the Harvard Firefighter’s Association to put together the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race. And now we have great news: the Harvard Board of Selectman approved the MRC’s new route for the Ken Harrod Memorial Road Race this past Tuesday nigh March 3rd. Coupled with that we already had the approval of the Harvard Police, Littleton Police, and Littleton Board of Selectman, our race is fully approved by the locals!

The race will be held on Saturday, May 30th, 2015, and will include a men’s P/1/2 field! Follow this link to register now:
https://www.bikereg.com/ken-harrod-memorial-road-race-2015

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The new course will start northeast out of Harvard Center, down a quick descent along Littleton road, taking competitors over several rolling hills towards Littleton Station where they loop around and head southwestand up a challenging climb that should be familiar to many locals: Oak Hill/Old Littleton road. After that effort, there’s not much rest as the course turns left on Pinnacle and up a short punchy climb to the highest elevation in the race. A right turn onto Oak Hill Road past Carlson Orchards then down a super fast descent followed by a 10% climb back into town for the Start/Finish.

2015 KHRR course map

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