Sunday, August 16, 2009

Pontiac Lake XC

HOT! That is was. And at 90 degrees, my first goal of the day was try not and cramp. So I guess I hit my goal since I did not cramp at all, and the rest of the day went well also. There was a large field today in Expert 30-39. 19 total. Most of us were surprised at the size, because it seemed like there were only 20 cars in the lot before the start. So it went something like this.

After good warm up, we lined up. I was already sweating like crazy. The temps were already in the 80's at start time. The whistle blew and we were off. I decided to line up in the back and pick off folks as I went about my business. I hooked up early with Greg Donnie, Brad Lako, Adam Naish, and Jason the OX! We had a good pace line going and Greg and Brad were putting out a blistering pace that the rest of us could not hold on. Then it was Adam, Jason, and myself. Adam quickly peeled off the back. By this time, we were finishing up the first lap. Jason, put a gap on me by about 30 seconds as the 40+ guys came steam rolling by. I finished the first lap with a personal best time of 43 mins! I was stoked about that, but there were still 2 more laps to go. I caught Jason again about 4 miles into the 2nd lap. Passed him on the big climb and put a small gap into him, for a hot second. He said he was whipped, but I wish I could still ride like him when I am whipped. I Felt very strong and consistent for the rest of the race. My last 2 laps were 46 and 49 mins. Not bad, especially on such a tough course and with temps in the 90's on the last lap.

Coming home on the last lap, Jason was still on my tail. We battled back and forth, but I tried to put the gas on when I could to drop him. It didn't work very well. Until about the last 2 miles. Knowing I was still feeling good and would not cramp, I pushed up the last 2 large hills with all I could. On the final switch back climb, I could not see him. I popped it up in the big ring and sprinted home. 10 place. Not bad for a tough day.

This was the first race on the 29er Superfly. The bike handled awesome. I could really lay it in the corners, accelerate nicely on the flats, glide over the rocks and roots, and hammer up the climbs. Very Happy!!!!

As I am 100% into my training for cyclocross, it is going very well. In fact, I think my CX training even helped me out for today's race. I am doing 2 week builds with 1 week rest, and my body seems to be handling the stress better than when I was doing 3 week builds with 1 week rest. So live and learn. But for now the focus is on hard interval at short efforts, and power!

My next stop will be the Fort Custer TT. I am looking forward to this race as it is a favorite place for me to ride. In addition, it will only be 1 hr long. Right up my alley! This will also be a good gauge to see where my fitness is with Cyclocross in a few weeks. Furthermore, I feel this is my last and only real chance of cracking the podium 1 last time for the mountain bike season.... But we will have to wait and see.
Thanks again to Steve Balogh for letting me use the picture!


zenbicyclist said...

43 minute lap?!? I'm not sure I could do that at Pontiac on my Yamaha YZ125.

Todd Shorkey said...

Congrats on a great race, John!

I am glad to hear everything went well and that the new bike makes you happy. I can't wait to see you tear up the field during the cx season....

Paynful said...

Nice job Jon!! You were 6 sec faster than me on our first laps!!

CX season is coming!!

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