Saturday, June 12, 2010

Tulsa Tough 2010

Last weekend was the NRC (National Race Calendar) bicycle race Tulsa Tough in Tulsa, OK. This was my first year going to this race and even though I didn't race I had a blast watching the race. Not only it was a blast watching the pros race but it was a blast watching the amateurs race too.

When I first arrived in Tulsa last Saturday, I really didn't expect the race to be so popular with the locals. It was a festival, just like you would see at any international UCI race. This was a rare site for me and most Americans. Normally one would have to go the Tour of California/Missouri or to Europe to witness such a festival like atmosphere at a bike race.

I would be the first to admit that cycling in American is not that popular, but I what I witness in Tulsa I might have re-think that statement now. Take a look at the photos below to see for yourself.

Tulsa Tough was a three day NRC bike race that started on the fourth and ended on the sixth. I was only able to go to the race on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday was in the Brady district which was in the northern most edge of downtown Tulsa. The Brady district was a cool part of town that hosted many cool local restaurants/bars and businesses. My personal favorite, and I'm sure it was true for anybody at the bike races, was a bar called "The Sound Pony." The Sound Pony is a true "biker bar" aka bicycle bar. The establishment had bicycle frames, bike jerseys, tour de France and other European races posters for it's decor. The sun was setting as the Pro race started and quickly became a night. The streets were lined with hundreds of people cheering on the riders. When the night ended, I thought to myself that how can this day of racing be topped off? The very next day came and more people showed up to the races. On Sunday there was another great turn out for the third and last day of Tulsa Tough. Most people congregated on a hill that was dubbed "cry baby hill" due to its long and steep grade. The houses along cry baby hill open up there homes and front lawns for everybody. There was even a band that was playing on top of the hill.

Enough typing for me now, I'll let the pics tell the rest of the story.

*I made the pics smaller for you so that it won't take forever for the page to load up. If you want to see them bigger just click on the photos to see them through my flickr.

Saturday night's race:

The Sound Pony
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Britton in the Cat 1 2 race
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Pro rider before his race, watching the Cat 1 2 race.
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5x World Champion Steve Tilford pre race:
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Brian Jensen pre race
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during the Pro race at night
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Brad Huff in his way to winning that night's crit
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Brad Huff after winning the race
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Philip Mann, post race
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Hey Brad! I think that kid might be a little young for your soigneur.
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Phil and Alex of Team Bahati Foundation
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Shortly after they open the course, I saw this girl crossing the finishing line with a few other people.
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SUNDAY's RACE!!! What a Party

Cry Baby hill, pre race: People started drinking and dancing before the pro race started
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Cry baby Hill! During the Cat 1 2 race (still before the pro race) it started to get crazy
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Teammate: Matt Ochs
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People out in full support
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The Band on Cry Baby Hill:
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The Pro race. Brian Jensen won Sunday's race solo!
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Other people that I saw at the races
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Brian breaks away from the group and wins Sunday's race SOLO!
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Dave Towle interviews Brian on his win
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Congrats Brian
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Pro Women's Tulsa Tough omnium winners: Jennifer Purcell having a good year so far. She won collegiate nationals last month and now Tulsa Tough omnium.
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Pro men's Tulsa Tough omnium winners. Brad Huff wins omnium while his teammate took second in the omnium. Way to go Jelly Belly!
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Thats all the photos i want to share with you on this post, but make sure to check out my Flickr to see the whole set of the Tulsa Tough race.

or just view this slideshow:


Here's some video that I took with my iPhone of the pro race:



Video pick of the day:
Seven by Sunny Day Real Estate
This song takes me back to my high school days.

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1 Comments:

Blogger Matthew Ochs said...

Nice picks brah. More like Tulsa Rough..

June 13, 2010 at 3:39 PM  

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