The 2011 Ohio Valley Cyclocross Series opened to a rainy morning at Fisherman's Park in Louisville, KY on Sunday. Along with course's traditional off-camber sections and steep uphill grunts, the course designers added many new twists and turns as well as a forced dismount at the bottom of one hill. The tight turns and brake-clogging wet grass made for slow going in the early races, but conditions dried up for the elite races in the afternoon.
Quite a few category changes were made to the OVCX series this year. This included a Cat 4 only women's race and a separately scored Cat 3 women's category within the elite women's wave. This seems to have been beneficial for Bloomingtonians as Lindsay Rodkey took the women's Cat 4 Open win, and Elizabeth Cobb became the first-ever OVCX Cat 3 women's winner.
The other big category change for 2011 was the combination of the men's Elite 1/2 race with the Elite Master's 35+ and 45+ races. The result was a massively competitive 50 man field vying for 20 place's worth of prize money. Erik Hamilton, Andy Messer, Fred Rose, and Adam Rodkey all rose to the challenge, each finishing within the top 15. Additionally, Erik Hamilton finished second overall, with Andy Messer taking the 35+ win and Fred Rose taking second in the 45+ category.
Raw wave results for OVCX #1 are here.
Up next on the OVCX schedule is a double weekend in Indianapolis. Saturday's race will take place the classic Indiana cyclocross venue of Brookside Park, and Sunday's race will be held at Fort Harrison State Park. These races will also serve as the opening rounds for Indiana's own 12-race series, the Indiana Cyclocross Cup.