River City Bicycles is a premier bike shop in Portland, Oregon.

Saturday Morning Rides Cancelled

After speaking with Sorella’s board and River City Bikes management, we have decided to cancel the Saturday morning rides starting March 14, 2020 through April 12, 2020, and maybe beyond depending on Oregon’s health department requirements. This is in line with the COVID-19 guidelines of OBRA and the state of Oregon. River City Bikes, where our Saturday rides originate from, will update their website and I have updated our Meetup group events page.

This is not to say you should stop riding! Continuing to exercise is an excellent way to staying healthy. I ask you to stay safe and use caution. If you ride with others, please keep in mind ways you can mitigate close contact, in case:

  • Someone crashes, and needs help getting up, or needs medical attention
  • Someone bonks, and needs help getting stable
  • Someone might need a wheel, and you can’t really draft from 3-6 feet back
  • Two people crash into each other and need medical attention

Linda Watts, Sorella president

Muddy Sorella kit

Cyclocross Nationals Recap

Rhonda Morin takes the downhill at the 2019 CX Nationals.

Rhonda Morin trying to find the best line on the downhill at the 2019 CX Nationals.

A handful of Sorella Forte sisters made an appearance at CX Nationals in Lakewood, WA, December 10-15, 2019. It was an epic experience. Make some noise for Bonnie Rosenfeld who captured the only podium for Sorella – a silver medal! 

Kim Sass bravely did two of the hardest fields at nationals – the 40-44 group and women’s singlespeed.

Oregon’s Clara Honsinger won the Elite Women’s Pro race. Katie Compton has won this race 15 years in a row. Interestingly, Katie captured her first national title in Portland, OR at PIR in 2004, and lost it 16 years later in Washington to an Oregonian. 

Rhonda Morin’s master’s field (50-54) was the largest with 29 incredible athletes. It’s a privilege to line up on the start line such fit and fast women. The course was extremely technical. There were two steep (15%-18% grade) up hills to run while carrying the bike on your backs. The mud was thick and created moving steps that feet would sink into with each step. Then racers had to remount their bike on the top and ride to the next obstacle. Needless to say there was a lot of heavy breathing.

Two steep down hills, complete with dogleg turns kept the pack honest. Muddy, ruddy, rooty and lined with spectators heckling the racers to “stay off the brakes.”  These hills were intimating. But by race day, they seemed a little less so. Kim and Rhonda got up enough nerve to ride down them in practice and in the race. But on Rhonda’s last lap, she drove her bike right into a photographer on the side of the hill. Luckily, she bounced off him and got right back on the course. Glad he wasn’t a tree.

Rhonda crossed the line in 12th place and finished unscathed and in one piece. Kim finished 17th in the geared race and 27th in singlespeed.

Kim Sass goes for the run up at the 2019 CX Nationals.

Kim Sass goes for the run up at the 2019 CX Nationals.

Posted by Rhonda Morin

Having fun

Sorellas sure do like to have fun. And other times we train pretty hard.

Sorellas shine at Grand Prix Luciano Bailey

Several sisters raced in style at the cyclocross opener at David Douglas Park in Vancouver, Wash., Saturday, August 31, 2019. We rocked it with top 10 finishes and one podium. See our race results at Grand Prix Luciano Bailey: DDCX. Come race at the Grand Prix. Make sure you come out and cheer us on this season.

CX season is here

Are you ready to rumble? Cyclocross 2019 starts August 31 with the opening series event of the Gran Prix Luciano Bailey at David Douglas park in Vancouver, Wash. It won’t yet be muddy, but the workout will be intense.

Bonnie, Kim and Susan enjoy mixing mud with afternoon sun for a beautiful complexion.

Other terrific events coming up include the weekly Portland Trophy Cup, Blind Date at the Dairy, Thrilla CX Series, Twilight CX and of course the infamous CX Crusade series that starts with a double header weekend on October 5-6 at Alpenrose Dairy. Check out the OBRA schedule for details.

Cyclocross PDX Clinic

Cyclocross requires good fitness, great skills and consistent race preparation. Join our clinic and learn how to improve your cross skills and race readiness. Want to start your season strong? Feeling a little rusty from the off season? Want to jump in but need some practice first? This is the perfect time to get a pre- season skill tune up or to hone skills before your first event. We keep our rider/coach ratios small to ensure individual attention so that skills can be taught and practiced to meet individual and group needs.

Sunday, August 18 from 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Register today.

$45 for each clinic. Sorella sisters get a discount!

Must be an OBRA member, sign up here or in person when you arrive at the clinic.

Bonnie pushing through the peanut butter at PIR, Nov. 2015.

Cyclocross skills covered

Mounts and dismounts
Shouldering the bike
Off-camber riding
Bike handling tips
Group starts
Cyclocross topics covered

Race preparation
Race strategy
Equipment and tire selection
Nutrition and fueling

Is This Clinic For You?
Adult and junior men and women. All levels welcome including first timers. We will tailor the sessions to your ability level and split into groups if needed.

A bike in good working condition. A cyclocross or gravel style bike will be best, and/or mountain bikes (without bar ends) are welcome as well. Flat pedals are OK. Be sure to come dressed to ride for all weather. Bring food and water for 3 hours of riding. Expect warm to hot and dry conditions, but check the forecast and come prepared.

Helmets are mandatory – they must be in good condition and fit appropriately.

Location Details:
The clinic is held at Gateway Green in NE Portland near Rocky Butte, Portland’s first dedicated cycling park. Please note there is no parking at Gateway Green. Do not park at the Trimet Park and Ride. They will tow. You may park for free at The Lumberyard Indoor Bike Park at 2700 NE 82nd Ave, Portland, Oregon 97220 and ride over.

If you are going through the MAX station, walk your bike! They will ticket you.

The clinics will be held rain or shine…this is cyclocross!

Annual Meeting is January 27

There will be plenty of bike parking available. Photo by pixabay.

Sorella’s annual meeting is slated for Sunday, January 27, 2019, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Fully Showroom located at 1010 SE Water Ave. in Portland.

We will vote on new and renewing board members. We will announce some price changes. First-time registration stays the same at $95 and renewal is now $35 (up from $30).

All are encouraged to attend.

We’ll celebrate our year with a potluck. Beverages will be provided.

Thank you Fully, our outstanding sponsor, for providing the space for us.

Annual Member Meeting

Join your Sorella sisters at our annual meeting

Sunday, January 28
4:30-6:30 p.m.

Fully Showroom
1010 SE Water Ave.
Portland, OR

Catch up on what’s new

Meet you Sorella sisters

Newest Queen Bad Ass to be crowned!

Singlespeed adventures

Rhonda 2017 race reports

Corn Cross

Singlespeed racing is always an adventure – epic courses with only one gear and disappointments when mechanicals affect the race. My season started with Corn Cross in Boring, Ore., a fast and hard race that includes dodging fallen corn husks (they hurt) through a maze, a steep, oh-my-god downhill and enough hard, bumpy turf to loosen fillings.

Corn Cross 2017

With a bit of a slow start trying to get into the pedal, I chased another rider for a bit, but over took her after the first lap or so. After that it was chasing down racers in the men’s field. At one point I grabbed hold of a metal barrier with the intent of swinging myself around the corner, but the barrier wasn’t secured to the ground and it toppled over barely missing the male rider next to me. “Sorry about that,” I blurted, while he was probably quite irritated with me.

The flyover on this is a huge wooden U-shaped monstrosity that is one-part scary and one-part fun. Each time I had to remind myself to breathe while sailing over it – never clipped in of course.

I took the win this day and enjoyed the fabulous prizes they always give at Corn Cross. Thank you City of Sandy. You all do a fabulous job.


This one will be short. Had a descent start, top 5, and about 1 minute into the race on the first uphill my chain drops. On a singlespeed! Game over. Fortunately I was able to get it back on, but that in itself told me it would likely happen again. SS chains aren’t supposed to come off and certainly you shouldn’t be able to put it back on if it’s correctly aligned and tight.

I chased the rest of the race. No pressure, just clean out the pipes. Tough parts to this course, but it also had some great flowing parts. There were a couple of corners I never figured out. One was where you came in at an angle for a 90 degree turn up a small hill. Soft sand usually put me in the bushes. Turns out it was faster to run it.

There was an uphill section that could easily be done with a geared bike, but not a SS, at least not for me. I did see a SS racer ahead of me who remounted and took the second half of it. Impressive.

Dropped the chain a second time on the same darn hill just after passing a racer. Got it back on again and was able to re-catch her after the sand pit. There were two back-to-back pits (volleyball sand) – one was rideable, the other not. I love sand!

Managed to catch and pass two or three competitors in poor air quality. The Gorge was on fire with the Eagle Creek burning and on this day and the smoke was particularly choking. Probably took a year or two off my life.

Battle at Barlow

Haven’t done this one in years, despite that fact that it is four miles from my house. It hasn’t been one of my favorite races before this day. We’d had several days of race and several dry days leading up to the race, so the ground was less bumpy then in the past. There have also been years when it was an absolute mud swamp and not even worth the trouble. Google pictures of a few years ago to see what I mean.

On September 24 the sun was out and the ground was tacky. Perfect conditions. Fast in parts and wicked hard in others. For the first time I ran up the steep ravine via the railroad ties that are lodged into the earth. I had discovered the right-side edge pre-riding it the night before, which allowed for not having to leap up each railroad tie, some of which came up mid-thigh on me!

That’s the spot where I took third on the first lap, passing others who chose to take the circuitous route up a path through the trees. I’ve done that before, but saw first-hand this time that it takes longer. I remounted at the top right away and muscled through to the single track.

I put some distance on me and #4 and worked to keep #2 in sight. There was never a chance I’d catch her, but I did manage to keep the time difference to about 10 seconds between me and Anna C. She’s in her 30s I think, so that felt good.

A podium finish helped erase last week’s chain episodes and my body felt good. Looking forward to doing a few Cross Crusade races this season.

Battle at Barlow 2017

Portland Trophy Cup Report

Jennifer Justus race report

On September 19, Julie Ann, Michelle, Judy and I raced at the Portland Trophy Cup race at PIR. It was a beginner-friendly course, made a little bit more fun from slippery grass and just a little bit of mud.

It was so much fun to ride with these three. Every time Michelle and I would pass she would say hi (I never saw her before she saw me)! Julie Ann’s love for cyclocross is really inspiring. This was Judy’s first ever race and I was so glad to see her huge smile at the end.

 This was my fourth time ever racing cross. Every time I sign up for a race, I immediately wonder what the heck I was thinking. I queue up and have a terrible case of pre-race jitters. Then I get going and all of that goes out the window. I just have fun. My bike and I just do our thing.
I felt much faster and more sure of myself than last race. Next time I know I will be even better. I was feeling a little down on myself for how I did last race. I knew the only way to fix that is to show up and do it again, which I did and will keep doing.