Images by Lee McdDaniel
The Spooky Cross, hosted in Dallas this past weekend, was the third race on the CX racing calendar in Texas. It was held at two separate venues, both in the shadows of downtown, and the weather was awesome for a family event, even if it was cross; can’t let a 57 degree morning with sunny blue skies get away. Of course rain from previous weeks left the course hard packed but dry, which made for very fast flats but dusty after a bunch of 35mm (cycling photog speak) knobby tires come rolling through. The races ranged from Kiddie, Jr, Women, Masters, to P12; and of course you can’t have a Spooky race w/o a Hooligan division, with many of the racers dawning their fav Halloween outfits instead of their normal kits. There was approximately 255 pre-registrations for the weekend, and at least that many spectators on hand to watch the talent show off their skilz on the twisting single track and power up the undulating but short climbs, which had a few barriers strategically placed to prevent the crafty from bunny hopping their way to victory.
There was lots of excitement and anticipation in the air too, as the match-ups would pit several of the local pros against each other to settle the dust from previous showdowns. Bryan Fawley (Dallas Bike Works), Paul Bonds (OKC Velo Club), and Colton Jarisch (Team Super Awesome), to name a few, went after it like it was a shootout at the OK Corral. The first few laps saw Bryan sitting in a small 4 man break from the field, with Paul setting a blistering pace and showing why he was the one to beat. Clearing the barriers with a ballerina finesse (no, that was Dallas Bike Works Steven Thompson dressed in pink), he and Bryan started to open a gap on all the others and it looked like a two man showdown. However, this time, Bryan was out to make sure no mishaps or conditioning were getting in the way, and with 45 mins left in the P12 race, he moved to the front. At the halfway point, he opened a gap on Paul and managed to keep a 20-30 sec lead through to the bell lap, then left it all on the course with a decisive surge and solo win in front of the huge cheering crowd.
Just for the record, Bryan put his foot down and repeated on Sunday.