The Colavita Cup was an unusual race. We started late in the afternoon at 3 p.m. This allowed me to participate in the Bagel Ride from the shop earlier in the morning. Saturday's weather was very nice. It was a little cold, but not bad. When we rode around Leavenworth County, we heard the leaves crunch under our tires and we smelled the smoke of burning leaves. We saw the beautiful colors of fall. The 25 miles went away quickly and we enjoyed a toasted bagel with some coffee. As I arrived at the cross race, I felt strange. Almost every race I had been to this year started early in the morning. You develop a routine. This race was not routine in any way. As I rode a warm up lap, Roger Harrison called me over to say, "Don't ride the ditch.” He counseled me. This turned out to be good advice. The course looked as though someone had run a brush hog through a wooded field. It had several ditches, a tree you had to crawl under, barriers to jump and several off camber, 180-degree turns. In short, this was a technical course. Now back to Roger's advice. As I started the race, I watched a rider in front of me attempt to ride the ditch. I heard a loud bang as his wheel exploded and heard him launch in to some expletives. Note to self -- listen to Roger. Needless to say, I ran across the ditch on every lap. This was the toughest course we have raced this year. It was fun and good training. I finished eighth in the men's category 4 race. This Saturday, we will race at Heartland Park in Topeka, Kan. This race starts at 5 p.m. The course will be illuminated. Super cool!