Worcester, Mass.
September 15, 1996

Wellesley rider takes series

By Lynne Tolman

    Michele Lachance (Castano Wheels) of Wellesley stayed ahead of Kelly Ayotte (Team Banagan's) of Nashua, N.H., to win the $100 top prize in the Boston Sports Supplement Women's Category 4 Challenge Series. The 18-race points series drew 138 beginning female racers into New England road competition this year, with record-size women's fields at the Fitchburg Longsjo Classic and other races.

    Diane Tower (Minuteman Road Club) of Hudson had led the points contest for most of the season, winning the halfway prime, a $300 set of wheels from Castano. Her only first-place finish, Aug. 17 in her "hometown" race, the Marlboro Circuit Race, bolstered her No. 1 standing. But she skipped the next weekend's races in Maine to help a teammate in the Tour de 'Toona in Pennsylvania and relinquished the series lead to Lachance.

    Lachance and Ayotte battled each other all season, each consistently finishing in the top 10.

    Tower, 31, a nurse at Emerson Hospital in Concord, used to coach track at Assabet Valley Regional Vocational High School in Marlboro and at Fitchburg State College. In cycling, she was eligible for an upgrade to Cat. 3 in July, but still had goals in Cat. 4. "I was having fun. I was learning," she said.
    Collectors of vintage racing bikes can show off their machines Sept. 29 at the second annual Vintage Racing Bicycle Concours at Bicycle Classics, 1329 Highland Ave., Needham. Bikes will be judged on originality, condition and scarcity. Expect to see mostly Campagnolo-equipped lightweights from the 1960s, '70s and '80s, along with early fixed gears, exotic French touring bikes and British middleweights. There is no entry fee, and there will be prizes.

    There will be an informal ride at 10 a.m. Registration for the contest is at 12:30 p.m., and judging begins at 2:30. For more information, call Michael Kone (617 455-0590).
    Andy Rubel is putting the finishing touches on the Eastern Massachusetts Bicycle Map, which will be available next month. The map will show recommended bike routes and attractions in Marlboro and towns east of Interstate 495, except for Cape Cod. Rubel has also published a North Shore and Cape Cod bike map, and one for Boston. The maps are $5 each, postage included, from Rubel BikeMaps, PO Box 1035, Porter Square, Cambridge, Mass. 02140.
     This is my last bicycling column for the year, but with mountain biking and cyclocross, there's no off-season for cycling anymore. The New England Cyclocross Series begins Oct. 5 in Plymouth, N.H., and ends Dec. 22 in Plymouth, Mass.

     Local races in the series are scheduled for Oct. 26 in Lancaster, Nov. 10 in Sterling and Nov. 24 in Palmer. Two of the races, Nov. 10 and 16, are part of the national Cyclocross Super Cup series.

     For details of the New England series, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to Tom Stevens, 19 Bedford Court, Concord, Mass. 01742 (371-2791). For information on the Super Cup, which includes the national championships Dec. 7 in Seattle, contact national coach Clark Natwick (415-572-1854).
    The New England Women's Cycling Club will have a cyclocross clinic for women Sept. 29 at Mine Falls Park in Nashua. Cost is $20. Instructors are three-time New England champion Jen Mynter and two-time national champion Tom Masterson. For more information, call Mynter at Coyote Hill (802-222-5133).
    TIP OF THE HELMET -- To Mike Josephson of Clinton and Marcia Samsel of Grafton, who set amateur men's and women's course records at the West Boylston time trial on the last day of the season, Sept. 3. Josephson covered the 10.2 miles in 22 minutes, 20 seconds (27.4 mph). Samsel's time was 26:18 (23.2 mph).

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