Monday, May 27, 2013

Stony Creek "Not-so-Hot" Mountain Bike Marathon

This is the one I dread the most every year. 50 miles of XC racing is not my bag. And this race usually takes place in the middle of the summer, when it hotter than hell, and I am taking a break from the bike. But this year I was hoping for it to be different. It would be cooler, and I would have at least some fitness and miles in the legs.

I woke up and was not feeling real good about racing. Legs were already tired from the 8 hrs I put in earlier in the week. We got to the line, and most the usually suspects and a few from the past were there as well. The clocked ticked down and we were off! We took off hard, but the pace was manageable. I was hanging on but the legs felt heavy and full of acid for the entire lap. I was in the lead group until the end of the first lap, and that's when the old dudes caught us. I could not hang on. Brad, Dub-9, and Roger hopped on the train. I was constantly dropping my chain, and burning a match every time to keep up. So I backed off and decided to race within my limits. The legs were coming around, and I was able to put out some consistent power lap after lap. I soon found myself on the wheel of Jeff Cerget and Ryan Katulic who got dropped from the train I dropped earlier. This was really good company, and we all decided to work together. We rode like this for a few laps. Then Jeff pulled. He tried to drop us both. He turned the screws but I was able to hang on or bridge back up. Ryan took a DNF. We got to the 4th lap, and Jeff said his legs were jello. But he could have fooled me. We got to the last long 2 track section, and I decided to test him. At this point, we were deciding on who would take 4th or 5th. I went hard and as long as I could. I was slowly putting in time to Jeff, and to my surprise, I saw Lako just ahead. I continued to push, and by the end of the last lap on the long 2 track climb, I had enough separation between Jeff, and only a few seconds to Lako. Into the 5th lap, I could feel the beginnings of cramps in by quads, but I still felt I had lots of power. I finally caught Lako and realized he had crashed, and was bleeding all over. But Brad still had a lot of energy and was riding strong. So we cruised the rest of the lap together, and at the end Brad gave me a gift by letting me cross the line for 3rd. Thanks dude. That showed great sportsmanship, and karma will come back in your favor!

Congrats to JTP, and Shawn Schaffert, and Dub-9 for taking some big wins!

And congrats to Marc Z for taking his first sport podium and in the single speed class to boot!

Congrats on the entire TSB crew for bringing in a few more podiums and no one taking a DNF!

Thanks to Mike's Mix Sports Drink for fueling me through this tough race! This is by far the best tasting and easy on my system sports drink I have ever had! Especially in such a grueling event like this!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Warriors, come out and play.... "ILRA XC Experience"

Here's the class of 2013... Mad, bad, and ready to kick ass. Reminds me of the gangs in the movie Warriors. I guess this would be the gang that dresses up in their PJ's and kicks your ass with their bicycles? Well enough of this blabber. lets talk about the racing. Island Lake Rec XC. The Tailwind crew was able to secure the venue to add it into the XC race series. And it turned out to be one of the best XC races I have ever done! and by the look of the turnout, everyone else was excited about racing here is well.

My race went well, but I still am reaching for that extra gear? When will it kick in? Everyone is coming out flying this year. its amazing, and been hard to keep up. I guess I will keep plugging away as my best weeks should be just ahead.

We started very fast! I jumped on Brads wheel and was able to hold on for most of the blue loop. I was gaped halfway through the yellow, and this is when Dub-9 went by. I was still in a good position, and could see the guys just ahead. I caught one of the riders I thought was in the lead group to find out later was in the younger age group. So in the end what I thought was a 3rd place finish was actually 4th.

Congrats to Brad and Joe on taking W's again. And congrats to JTP, Shawn, Pete, Mike W Alex, Dub-9, and DC for great racing as always!

Thanks Dub-9 for letting me steal the photos!

Time to keep turning the pedals over...