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The ‘unroad’ racing rolled on Sunday at the Belgian Waffle Ride California, where 1,500 or so racers lined up for the 77-mile Wafer or 40-mile Wanna rides, and a few top riders who did the Waffle the day before competed for the best overall in the ‘Dubbelberg Header.’
The Easton Overland duo of former road pro Rob Britton and cyclocross racer Caroline Dezendorf won their respective divisions in the Wafer and both placed second in the Dubbelberg Header.
Flavia Oliveira (Excel Sports) and Brian Scarbrough (Competitive Metals) won the Dubbelberg Header with the lowest combined times across 214 miles of pavement, gravel, and trail.
- Alexey Vermeulen wins Belgian Waffle Ride after dropping Alex Howes
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All the racers who did both were joking afterwards about how uninspired they were initially on Sunday morning to suit up again after a 7- or 8-hour day Saturday.
“I was looking at my kit for today, like, ‘uh, I don’t know…,'” Oliveira said. “But once we got going it was fine. Although that start was crazy!”
A police escort led the race out of San Marcos, around California State University San Marcos’ campus and up a steep climb that ground the front group down to about 20 riders.
Britton, a former Tour of Utah winner, played a role in driving the group on the climb. Then he would go on to attack and attack until he was solo, with more than two thirds of the race still to go.
His legs felt better than the day before, when he experienced both legs locking up with cramps.
“I have felt a lot of things in racing over the years, but I had never had that. It was biblical,” he joked. “I felt so much better today than yesterday.”
Dezendorf had a similar experience.
For a time, Dezendorf was riding with Oliveira — who was second to Mo Wilson on Saturday — and Amity Rockwell, who was eleventh on Saturday after a crash.
“I dropped my chain and lost Amity, but later caught Flavia,” she said. “Then I chased onto a group of guys, and we rode together the whole way. So I had a good group, and yeah, felt way better than yesterday.”
“But today was like long-format ’cross. It was just flat and sandy, so I was like, this is my jam. I was stoked,” she said. “Yesterday was brutal. The dirt sections were fun, but it was so hard.”
Men’s Dubbelberg Header winner Scarbrough echoed the others in saying he was apprehensive to get back on the bike, but actually felt better once racing.
“Today was definitely more of an enjoyable day,” said Scarbrough, who won the U.S. national Cat 1 cross-country championship in 2016. “I woke up today and didn’t know if I didn’t want to do it. But after first 10 miles, I felt fresh. And I was actually able to put out more power than yesterday. Which is pretty odd.”
Scarbrough works full time as the head fabricator and designer at AlumiCraft, which makes off-road race cars. He’s a longtime mountain bike racer, who was seventh at the 2019 BWR California.
On Saturday, Scarbrough was in the lead group of 15 leading into race’s decisive midway point, where race winner Alexey Vermeulen drove a hard pace through a technical section.
“There, it went from a 75 percent effort to a 105 percent effort for me,” Scarbrough said. “A kid bobbled right in front of me, and then there were five us who just couldn’t close the gap to the leading 10 or so riders.”
On Sunday, Scarbrough was second to Britton. “There was somewhat of an established chase group behind Britton,” he said. “But we couldn’t really get organized to work together. But he was riding so strong, we would have had to have a few good people to pull him in.”
The Belgian Waffle Ride continues this year with three more events, in North Carolina, Utah, and Kansas. VeloNews will continue coverage of all the BWR events.
|1||Flavia Oliveira Parks||Excel Sports-Groove||7h 56m 52s||4h 30m 47s||12h 27m 39s|
|2||Caroline Dezendorf||Easton Overland-Cervélo||8h 06m 17s||4h 25m 56s||12h 32m 13s|
|3||Amity Rockwell||Trek-Easton||8h 30m 27s||4h 31m 43s||13h 02m 11s|
|1||Brian Scarbrough||Competitive Metals||7h 08m 15s||3h 51m 59s||11h 00m 15s|
|2||Robert Britton||Easton Overland-Wirth It||7h 20m 33s||3h 45m 01s||11h 05m 34s|
|3||Innokenty Zavyalov||Mazda-Lauf||7h 13m 59s||4h 01m 21s||11h 15m 20s|
Check out the complete Dubbelberg Header results here.