Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Scenes from ... the Mass Ave Criterium

On Aug. 13, the fourth annual Mass Avenue Criterium cycling race was held along a triangular course in downtown Indianapolis. The heart of the course (the hypotenuse) was a two-block-long section of Massachusetts Avenue, one of Indianapolis' six cultural districts; Vermont and East streets provided the other legs. Riders in several skill level categories competed throughout the day, not only for race championships, but also state championships.

The pictures in this post are from that competition, an all day affair that didn't end until dark, when the last race -- the men's category 1/2/3 -- was cut short because it was struck by the same storm that would topple the stage scaffolding at the Indiana State Fairgrounds right before the country band Sugarland was to take the stage, killing six people. The storm kicked up a very stiff wind along Mass Ave as the race announcer yelled out the bell lap, and organizers managed to get the podium ceremony for the last race finished moments before the downpour began.

The top photo is the women's category 1/2/3 photo finish, won by Jane Weakley (far right and first photo below). Finishing second and third were Jennifer Cvar (far left) and Briana Clark (middle). In fourth place, on the far right, and just missing a spot on the post-race podium, was Marian University team cyclist Jackie Kurth, who just last month had won the women's category 1/2/3 competition in the second annual Indy Criterium, also in downtown Indianapolis. As the top finisher from Indiana, Cvar earned the state championship.

Eric Young (last photo below, center of podium) won both the men's category 1/2/3 race and the men's 1/2/3 Indiana championship. Kirk Albers and Chad Burdzilauskas finished second and third in the race; Burdzilauskas was runnerup and Jonathan Jacob third in the state championship. The podium show at the very bottom is from the podium ceremony for the state championship.

A full gallery of images from this event is available at my online site at

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