Sun., September 22, 2013
Farm Cross
South Republic
Sat., October 5, 2013
Sherman Cross
MTU Football Stadium, Houghton
C men, B women: 7:30pm
B men, A women: 8:15pm
A men: 9:00pm
Sun., October 13, 2013
Fit Strip
Sat. October 19, 2013
Keweenaw Cup: Day 1
Downtown Hoedown
Copper Harbor
Sun., October 20, 2013
Keweenaw Cup: Day 2
Top of the World Smackdown
Keweenaw Mountain Lodge,
Copper Harbor
Sun., October 27, 2013
River Park
Sun., November 10, 2013
Al Quaal
Sat., November 23, 2013
U.P. Cyclocross Championships/
Choco-X Crusade
Harvey / Marquette
Race start times*
Women B, Men C: 1 p.m.
Women A, Men B: 1:45 p.m.
Men A: 2:30 p.m.
* The first race of day 2 of the Keweenaw Cup (Oct. 20) will start at 11 a.m.; subsequent times to be adjusted accordingly.
Nicole Alexander & Colby Lash Take U.P. Championships, Claim Series Titles
November 11, 2013

Results now posted from the 2013 Choco-X and final UPCROSS standings:

UPCROSS #8: Choco-X
Final standings as of 11/26/13

Adam Griffis
Chris Schmidt

Recap coming soon!

Nicole Alexander negotiating the snow

Nicole Alexander & Tyler Gauthier Take Wins at Al Quaal
November 11, 2013

Race organizers dug deep into their bag of tricks to ensure that the strongest would prevail on the tortuous Al Quaal trails in Ishpeming: breakneck downhills, a near-vertical runup, and a death spiral on the windswept fields of the Ishpeming highlands. Racers were spared the dangers of a snow-covered parcours, the November sun still strong enough to melt away the first assault of winter.

In the penultimate contest of the season, Tyler Gauthier (Border Grill) claimed his third race in as many tries. Colby Lash (Ace) finished a strong second, firming his hold on the series lead. 2012 series champion, Brian Geshel (Blackrocks), held on for third in the men's A race.

In the women's A race, Nicole Alexander (Ace) picked up her fourth win of the season, extending her lead in the series standings. Newcomer to the A class, Melissa Mack (Michigan Tech / C4) took second and is condender for a spot on the podium in the series. Last year's series champion, Christina Bennett (Ace) rounded out the top three.

A big thank you to Range Mountain Bike Club, the Border Grill team, and KMK/UPCROSS organizers for another great event!

The season will be decided at the U.P. State Cyclocross Championships / Choco-X Crusade on Saturday, November 23 at the Bike Haus in Harvey (Marquette). Standings are still tight in a number of classes. With double points on the line, the podiums are sure to be shuffled are before the dust (or mud... or snow) settles at Choco-X Crusade.

UPCROSS #7: Al Quaal
Standings as of 11/11/13
Standings: Best 5 of 7

Note: Scoring reflecting the best 6 of 8 races to be posted this week.

Men's A podium: Tyler Gauthier,
Colby Lash, and Brian Geshel
Glen Lerlie rolling the fat bike
Cooper Dendel, Tyler Gauthier Victorious at River Park
October 28, 2013

Border Grill riders Cooper Dendel and Tyler Gauthier notched another pair of wins this weekend in the sixth race of the 2013 UPCROSS series. It was Cooper's third win of the season and Gauthier's second.

With just two races left in the season, the standings are starting to firm up, though there are still some hotly contested podium slots. Double points are on the line for the final race and racers score the best of 6, so standings will see some adjustments before the dust settles on the 2013 season.

After four straight weeks of racing, UPCROSS riders can enjoy a week off - at least those who aren't racing Iceman. To those who are: good luck! CX racing continues November 10 at Al Quaal in Ishpeming.

Reminder: T-shirt/hoody orders due by Nov. 10!

UPCROSS #6: River Park
Standings as of 10/28/13

Men's A podium: Tyler Gauthier,
Colby Lash, and Tyler Jenema.
Photo: Jen Kilpela
Evan Simula in the drops.
Photo: Jen Kilpela
Nicole Alexander, Colby Lash Take the Cup
October 22, 2013

UPCROSS racing moved to Copper Harbor this weekend for the sixth edition of the Keweenaw Cup. Well over 50 racers were on hand for the two-day event, which featured racing in downtown Copper Harbor and the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge.

On Saturday, racers in the Men C/Women B and Men B/Women A were treated to relatively warm temperatures and sunshine for the duration of their races, with Mark Kranz taking the win in the Men's C race and Lindsay Bean notching another victory in the Women's B race. Steve Webber (Red Jacket) outspun the field on his single speed to win the Men's B race and Nicole Alexander (Ace) claimed her second UPCROSS win in a row in the Women's A race.

Clouds moved in and temperatures plummeted as the Men's A field took to the course Saturday afternoon. Halfway into the 45 minute contest, the skies opened up and conditions went from dry and predictable to wet and slick. Ace rider Colby Lash was able to keep the tires on the ground, however, and rode his way to race UPCROSS win number four under a double rainbow.

Sunday the action moved up the hill the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge. The Jekyll and Hyde course alternated between paved and leaf-laced golf cart paths, rough grassy sections which darted in and out of stands of pine, and a fast section of dirt road.

In the Men's C race, Mark Kranz repeated, as did Lindsay Bean in the Women's B race - securing their respective Keweenaw Cup titles. Andy Reed came out on top in the Men's B race and claimed title. In the Women's A race, Nicole Alexander (Ace) took another championship, reclaiming the title from this year's third-place finisher, Christina Bennett (Ace). Melissa Mack (C4) finished second. The overall title in the Men's A race went to Colby Lash (Ace), who has been dominating the UPCROSS series this season. Last year's men's champion, Brian Geshel (Blackrocks) took second on the day and secured the silver. Dalton Guggenos (C4) had a fourth place finish, which was good for third.

A huge thank you to everyone who helped out with the races this weekend, especially Chris and Tammi Lehto, Dan Motowski, Adam Griffis, Pat McEnaney, Dave and Melanie Watkins, Bruce Pletka, the Red Jacket Cycling Team, Dennis Liphart, Dave and Nicole Alexander, the UPCROSS organizers and everyone who helped out in making the event a success. A big thank you as well to the Clyde Wescoat for the use of the field in Copper Harbor, Grant Township, the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge, The Garden Brook Studio, the Mariner North for hosting dinner and all of the UPCROSS sponsors.

Racing continues this weekend (Oct. 27) at River Park in Marquette. First race (Men C/Women B) is at 1:00pm.

Keweenaw Cup - Day 1 Results
Keweenaw Cup - Day 2 Results
Standings as of 10/22/13

Adam Griffis: Day 1, Day 2
Chris Schmidt: Day 1, Day 2
TV 6: Keweenaw Cup CX Race

Superman clearing the kryptonite pit
A little CX weather.
Photo: Adam Griffis
Lianna Miller clearing the barriers.
Photo: Adam Griffis
Go Keweenaw Cross Collective!
Photo: Adam Griffis
UPCROSS T-Shirts & Hoodies!
October 18, 2013

A t-shirt and hoodie order for UPCROSS gear is in the works. The shirts and hoodies will be printed by Bohmeia Printing of L'anse using eco-friendly water-based inks. Shirts will be Anvil organic (in mens and ladies cuts; hoodies will be full zip from Anvil. Shirts are $12, hoodies $26.

Orders must be received by November 10 (Al Quaal CX), shirts will be ready by Nov. 23 (U.P. Champs / Choco- CX Crusade). See order form for details.

Order form download: upcross_shirt_orderform.pdf

Keweenaw Cup Oct. 19 & 20
October 13, 2013

Fast-paced cyclocross action returns to the Keweenaw October 19&20. The sixth annual Keweenaw Cup, organized by Houghton's Red Jacket Cycling Team with support from the Copper Harbor Trails Club, will see as many as 100 racers lining up for two days of racing: Saturday, Oct. 19, in the Downtown Hoedown in downtown Copper Harbor, and Sunday, Oct. 20, in the Top of the World Smackdown at the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge in Copper Harbor. Weekend champions in each of five classes will be awarded the illustrious Keweenaw Cup.

The races are open to everyone of all ages and all abilities on any kind of bike. No experience required! Typically 30 minutes to one hour in duration, cyclocross events are timed races held on short courses (1 – 1.5 miles) and feature surfaces ranging from pavement and dirt roads to singletrack and grass. Obstacles, which include everything from wooden barriers, logs, sand pits, mud bogs, and unrideable hills, add to the challenge — and make mounting and dismounting an integral part of the race. Scheduled for mid-October, anything is possible in the Keweenaw with respect to the weather — and the race will go on regardless of what it decides to do.

The $20 entry fee for Saturday's afternoon race includes a pasta dinner at the Mariner North and music to follow at Zik's by Frank and da Beans. Dinner tickets will be available at the Mariner North on Saturday for non-racers. Entry for Sunday's race is $10.

Proceeds from the weekend's events will benefit the Copper Harbor Trails Club.

The Keweenaw Cup will mark the fourth weekend of racing in this year's UPCROSS Points Series, a 7-race series of cyclocross events organized by Marquette's KMK Cycling Club and the Copper Country's Red Jacket Cycling Team and the Range Mountain Bike Club of Ishpeming. The series attracts racers each week from across Michigan, Northern Wisconsin and Minnesota from late September through mid-November.

Further details on the Keweenaw Cup at www.keweenawcup.com

Border Grill Special at the Fit Strip
October 13, 2013

Border Grill riders Cooper Dendel and Tyler Gauthier took top honors at Marquette's Fit Strip on Sunday for the third stop in the UPCROSS series. In the women's A race, Dendel was able to separate herself from a pair of Ace riders, Nicole Alexander and Christina Bennett for the win. In the men's A race, Tyler Gauthier sat back for the opening laps and let the fire burn hot and furious before needling his way through the detritus and turning up the heat yet again. Gauthier would finish the race with a healthy lead over current series champion, Colby Lash (Ace). 2012 champion Brian Geshel hung on for third.

Thanks to the 50+ riders who turned out for the race and to Colby Lash and the KMK crew for another great UPCROSS event.

Racing continues this coming weekend (Oct. 19/20) in Copper Harbor with the Keweenaw Cup.

Fit Strip CX results
Standings as of 10/14/13

Bill Stahl

Tyler Gauthier in the sunshine. Photo: Bill Stahl
UPCROSS Continues at Fit Strip Oct. 13
October 09, 2013

Fit Strip CX Race this weekend in MQT! Purported beer handups, hill climbs, multiple barriers, and more for spectators and crossers on Sunday! Don't miss out on the third stop of the 2013 UPCROSS Series.

Jason Jilbert from the 2009 Fit Strip Race
Lash, Alexander Reign in Rain
October 07, 2013
Colby Lash on a mission
UPCROSS Continues with Sherman Cross Oct. 5
September 25, 2013
Ian Marks

The 2013 UPCROSS series continues under the lights of Sherman Field on Saturday, October 5. The event, which is in its third year, will start with the Men's C and Women's B races at 7:30 pm. The Men's B and Women's A races will follow at 8:15 pm and the Men's A race will premier at 9:00 pm. The evening will close with a clunker race.

The course will feature a mix of pavement, gravel and grass around Sherman Field, the football and soccer stadium at Michigan Tech. The race is very spectator friendly with views of almost the entire course including the run-up to the bleachers. Cost of the race is $10.

The race is presented by the Michigan Tech cross country, Nordic skiing and track and field teams.

Sammy Graci on the runup in the 2012 edition
Red Jacket rider Mel Watkins in the zone
Former race organizer Ian Marks clearing the stairclimb
Lash, Dendel Plant Seeds for Season at FarmCross
September 23, 2013

Picking up where he left off last December, Colby Lash (Ace), defending UPCROSS champion, continued his winning ways at FarmCross, the 2013 season opener, outpacing Dalton Guggemos (Michigan Tech/C4) and Joey Graci (Ace). On the women's side, Cooper Dendel (Border Grill) was able to thwart the attacks from Melissa Mack (Michigan Tech/C4) and Nicole Alexander and lay the first blow in the 8-race series.

Some 65 racers turned out for the first race of the year, contested on the Gralexander farm on the outskirts of South Republic. Racers were faced with a technical course that featured winding singletrack, a double and a triple barrier and a long, sinister rumblestrip designed to keep speeds in check. With first-time racers in the dozens in addition to the numerous veterans of the series, the 2013 UPCROSS season is sure to be hotly contested.

A huge thank you to Dave and Nicole for hosting the event! With homegrown and homemade frites cooked on-site after the race the bar has been set high for the 2013 season.

FarmCross results
Standings as of 9/23/13

Chris Schmidt

Men's A podium: Colby Lash, Dalton Guggemos, Joey Graci. Photo: Nicole Alexander
Women's A podium: Cooper Dendel, Melissa Mack, Nicole Alexander. Photo: courtesy Nicole Alexander
2013 UPCROSS Calendar Set
September 09, 2013
Finally! The mountain bike season is nearly behind us and cyclocross bikes are once again getting some time in the dirt. Organizers have been working double duty putting this year's schedule together. Due to a number of new cycling events on the September race schedule, the start of the cx season has been pushed back a week from the past two years and some dates changed. Following the success of last year's extended season, racing will again continue through the better part of November. The schedule comprises eight races, with coring to be based on the best of six; double points for the championship race.

A huge thank you to all of the series sponsors, especially presenting sponsor Blackrocks.

New this year: kids under 15 will race for free and legitimate cyclocross bikes are required to compete for points in the A class.See the rules page for details.

The 2013 season kicks off on September 22, 2013 with an all new event: Farm Cross. Clandestine construction operations have been completed under the cover of darkness on the Grant/Alexander Farm in South Republic. On what is rumored to be a tortuous course, UPCROSS racers will shake out the legs and see how the competition stacks up after a not-so-long summer on the mountain bikes.

The entire of the schedule follows below:

Race #1
Sun., September 22, 2013
Farm Cross; Grant/Alexander Farm, South Republic, MI
Race host: Dave & Nicole / KMK
Race #2
Sat., October 5, 2013
Sherman Cross; Houghton, MI
Race host: Michigan Tech Track & Cross Country
Note: 7:30PM start
Race #3
Sun., October 13, 2013
Fit Strip; Marquette, MI
Race host: KMK
Races #4 &5
Sat. & Sun., October 19 & 20, 2013
Keweenaw Cup; Copper Harbor, MI
Race host: Red Jacket Cycling Team
See: http://www.keweenawcup.com
Sat.: $20 includes dinner & music; Sun.: $10/race
Race #6
Sat., October 27, 2013
River Park; Marquette, MI
Race host: KMK
Race #7
Sun., November 10, 2013
Al Quaal, Ispeming, MI
Race host: Range Mountain Bike Club
Race #8
Sat., November 23, 2013
U.P. Cyclocross Championships / Choco-X Crusade;
Cycling Haus - Harvey / Marquette, MI
Race host: Tom & Mary Mahaney / ACE / KMK
$20 includes end-of-season jamboree
Colby Lash and Christina Bennett U.P. Champs
December 02, 2012

The 2012 UPCROSS season drew to a frosty and exciting close this weekend with the U.P. State Cyclocross Championships. With standings extremely tight in several classes, turnout was strong as racers hoped to move up or hold on to their hard-earned placings by cashing in on the double points that were on the line for the championship event.

Having been extended from seven to nine races this year, the UPCROSS season ran from mid-September until December 1. Series organizers knew from the onset that such a late end to the season was playing with fire, at least as far as the weather was concerned. While a raging blizzard is in the cards from October onward in the U.P., snow is a near certainty by the time December rolls around. Thus, it came as no surprise when a late-November snowfall dropped 10 inches of powder on the Tourist Park venue in Marquette. UPCROSS organizers and KMK volunteers worked non-stop in advance of the race to bring the course into UCI specifications. Their work, combined with unseasonably warm temperatures on race day, made for a course free of unrideable snow, but laced with ice patches and pockets of unpredictable slush. Pavement, slick grass, technical downhills, sand traps and tight turns made for both a technical and fast-pace course.

Women's A race
From the gun it was clear that the women's race would be a two-person battle. Teammates and long-time rivals Christina Bennett and Nicole Alexander (both Ace) went head-to-head for the duration of the contest. With only one point separating the pair in the overall standings, the series title would be determined by the outcome of the day's race. Alexander set a high pace but was unable to decouple a determined Bennett from her rear wheel. Knowing what needed to be done, Bennett turned up the heat in the final turns of the race and claimed the win. For Bennett, the victory marked both her first U.P. State CX Championship title as well as her first UPCROSS overall title after several years on the podium. Taking third behind Nicole Alexander was Lianna Miller of Houghton.

In the overall series standings, Amy Michaels, Amanda Perry and Lindsay Bean rounded out the top five behind Bennett and Alexander.

Women's B race
The two-woman battle between Marie Peasely and Lisa Labar went in the favor of Ms. Labar. Marie Peasely, however, with her solid results all season long, was able to lock her hold on the series title. Taking second in the series standings was Jen Kilpela.

Men's A race
After dominating the season, Brian Geshel (Blackrocks) had a firm grip on the overall standings and was the clear favorite going into the championship race. Colby Lash (Ace) had other plans, however. Despite battling a cold, the Ace rider grabbed the reins of the race at the gun and never looked back. Taking the hole shot, Lash worked hard to separate himself from the field. Only Tyler Jenema (Kühl) was able to keep pace, and the pair quickly established a solid lead over poursuivants Evan Simula (Blackrocks), Joey Graci (Farmer Q), Brian Geshel (Blackrocks) and Mik Kilpela (Ace). The leading duo fought every inch of the race and constantly battled for position with each taking numerous turns at the front. In the end, however, Lash was able to capitalize on a mistake made by Jenema and open a small gap, which he was able to maintain to the finish. For Lash, the win marked his first victory in the A class. Evan Simula crossed the line third ahead of Joey Graci. Brian Geshel, with nothing left in the tank after an amazing season, took fifth.

In the final standings, the top five in the men's A division were: Brian Geshel, Colby Lash, Mik Kilpela, Evan Simula and Topher Chase.

Men's B race
Jason Luther of Sault Ste Marie, Canada, pushed the pace early on in the race, opening a gap his competitors would never close. Behind him, Tim Shandonay, Andrew Rickauer and James Bialas battled for the remaining podium spots. Shandonay, on a singlespeed mountain bike, took second. In the season-long battle between Rickauer and Bialas, it was Rickauer who came out on top.

Taking top honors in the series standings in the men's B class was Andrew Rickauer. Second went to Alex Rejc, third to James Bialas, fourth to Jason Jilbert and fifth to Andy Perry, last year's winner of the C division.

Men's C race:
After a pair of second place finishes, Kent Jenema broke the curse and took his first UPCROSS win. Terri Lahti, who had a very succesful first UPCROSS season, took second ahead of another first year rider, Doug Campbell.

Top five in the men's C UPCROSS division were: Terri Lahti, Doug Campbell, Steve Hackney, Jakob Kuhlman and Nate McFarren.

A huge thank you to all of the series sponsors, to the volunteers to helped set up, tear down, and run the races, UPCROSS organizers and all of the racers who helped make for another fun and successful UPCROSS season!

U.P State CX results
Final standings as of 12/02/12

Chris Schmidt

UPCROSS crew preparing the course
Men's A podium. Photo: Christina Merrill
Colby Lash leading Tyler Jenema over a climb
Christina Bennett closing in on the win
Lianna Miller having too much fun.
Evan Simula on the singlespeed
The Crossbar: Parcours at a Glance
January 7, 2009
Using (not-so) complex numerical modeling methods, the pain genome of each race course has been analytically reduced to a series of lines compressed into a single bar. The decryption key is as follows:

Green: grassy sections
Blue: water/mud hazards
Brown: singletrack / two-track
White: snow, ice, zamboni shavings
Red: blood (or likihood of shedding it on wooden barriers)
Black: pavement

web & graphics: xmatic