Mical Dyck settled for second place at the 2013 National Cyclocross Championships on Saturday.
After standing atop the podium last year, second was not what the 31-year-old geologist had hoped for when she headed to the South Surrey Athletic Centre park. Dyck is realistic about it, however, as she finished second to former Canadian Olympic mountain biker Catherine Pendrel.
“I was a little disappointed to lose, but it’s Pendrel, so I’m not super upset about losing to her. She had another gear, a pace I couldn’t quite hold.”
Cyclo-cross is a close No. 2 in terms of speciality for Dyck, who is cross-country mountain biker first and foremost. Same goes for Pendrel, a former University of Victoria student now based in Kamloops, who missed a mountain biking bronze medal by nine seconds at the 2008 Olympics.
Dyck closed in on Pendrel in the fourth and final lap and finished the 11.63-kilometre race in 38 minutes and 43 seconds, 20 seconds back.
Wendy Simms of Nanaimo, still going strong at 41,
came in third, 13 seconds behind Dyck.
Heavy rain doused the park Saturday morning and the course conditions deteriorated grossly from Friday’s pre-ride. Riders were forced off their bikes more often than they had planned (a signature feature of cyclo-cross).
“The muddy sections were substantially faster to run,” Dyck said.
“A few people like me try to ride even though we know it’s better to run and end up falling.”
Island great Geoff Kabush won the men’s cyclo-cross championship and Victoria’s Craig Richey was 11th.
Next up for Dyck is the Deschutes Brewery Cup race in Bend, Ore., Dec. 7 and 8, on the grounds of the brewery. The race is sanctioned by the Union Cycliste International (UCI), the world governing body for cycling. Dyck hopes to be at the 2013-14 world championships in the Netherlands on Feb. 1. She finished 19th at the 2012-13 worlds.
Dyck races for Stan’s NoTubes, a Colorado-based pro team, and is also sponsored by Pro City Racing in Vic West. In the summer she can be seen whipping up Fort and down Yates streets in the elite women’s Bastion Criterium, her “token road race,” which she won in 2013. Dyck’s also focused on cross-country stage and enduro stage races.