BROOOOOOSKIIII!!!!! Ah, darn it! Gonna miss you on the field #54
Archive for August, 2009
I am done. It dawned on me this morning (hah, I am so clever) that it may be my allergies kicking my ass right now.
Rides 43 and 44. Race Race Race.
Phew. I think I am past my best by date. To recap, since its been sooooooo long since my last blog post (eyebob). I went to Maine, did some running. Came back, did some more running, did Catamount, not much else, then this weekend I went down to Blunt Park at the last minute.
That was where the wheels came off. Or, the running took the wheels off, or, vacation and the lack of consistent riding (wait, do I ride consistently?) took the wheels off. Regardless, here we are, witlessly wattless.Blunt was HOT and SWAMPY. Good lord, never sweated so much. Actually, I think the past tense of sweat is sweat, no? Regardless, it was wet. I was wet. And I got bitten by bugs.I used the Sachs, single speed, cause that is all I have built up. I glued a tire on the single ENO hub’d wheel the day before. It never really dried though. I packed the night before, all set to go. I was taking Noah, so I had some of his last minute items in a plastic bag on the doorknob so I would not leave it. I put my wallet in his sneaker at that time.
In the AM, off we go. I need gas, so I am looking for my wallet before we drive off, just to make sure. Ask me why…I have driven away and found myself out of gas hours from home with no wallet before. Its not pretty.
So I freaked out, tore the whole truck/house apart, could not find it. Ended up taking my wife’s credit card and leaving, but I blew my warm up time in the process.
Got to the race, Noah put his sneakers on to ride around, there is my wallet. That was an omen of what was to come. So I drove in circles around the damn park, which is one way, and thus dumps you back out on the road and more delays, all trying to fing the damned registration. Note to Cyclonauts – make some signs please.
Finally I kitted up and rode over to the course, got reg’d, it was minutes to start. The reg guy pinned my number. I made it to the lined up start when the starter said “2-1/2 minutes to go”. Perfect, just in time to gather myself.
I had totally guessed on gearing, putting on 42×19 since I read it was “flat”. That was the extent of my recon. It was flat. But it was not fast. Except where it was fast. So off we go, I was in the back but slid up the inside with my usual pretty good start. Into the first turn, which is a 180 u-turn, people slowed way up and went wide, so I, um, just turned sharper and went inside. Hello. I came out of the corner gapped off the front 8 or so who were blasting away. This is the 1-4 35+ Masters race so some legs were in there. So there I was, at the head of the train and having never seen the course. And this was not Gloucester where that would be OK. This was Amesbury on crack.
Right after the u-turn was a chicane of sorts around giant trees. I took the totally wrong line into the first, which set me up totally wrong for each successive turn, in an additive manner, thus by the end I was basically off course. And it was single track. And EVERYONE was behind me. I actually yelled out an apology to the guy behind me, who snickered and said, “no worries”.
Out of the Chicane, you bang a right into the woods. Whoops, there is a giant log there, but it you take one end of the log, they have a tiny log for 12″ that you can ride over. This with a millisecond to see this log, see the line, make the decision, move over, ride over it. God, I wish I was on a wheel right now. I made it over that, then into the crazy single track root section, two more log dismounts, then finally out onto pavement. I was doing well on the remounts and running and was still pretty far up, some would say blocking. Then we hit the first of three pavements and KAPOW, everyone shifts and rides away. Ooookay. Oh yah, I am on a single speed. Then it was back onto trails, back onto pavement, back onto trails, over the quad barrier, oooooph way over geared coming out of that (it was a u turn I had to run through and then remount) then finally into something looking like a cross course. That lasted 3 minutes and you were back on the pavement at the start finish.
Long story short, I was way over geared and slowly got behind the gear on the technical stuff and slowed way the fuck down till I was last. Yay.
Race over, I headed to the car to regear. Oh hell yes, we are doing it again, right? Noah did not race till noon so I had to fill the time. I was cross eyed and WET so I put on 38×17 when I meant to do 38×19. That required shortening the chain (odd, that worked at home, WTF?). Took a link out, fixed my brakes (oh yah, I lost the front brake in the M35 race, right into the spokes, thank god I had campy-esque levers on the single and could flip them open). Ride to reg going, g’damn, this feels hard for 38×19. Look down, shit, 38×17. ARGH. Regeared again, got pinned up, saw eyebob was hanging with Noah, check. He said, hey, you better line up! What? Oh crap, its time to go already, there was already 3 rows of 3/4′s lined up.Ok, so I am 4th row. No prob. Then 5 minutes to go all these guys show up and start jamming themselves in on both sides, squeezing a row up, lining up wide, all kings of cluster fuckage.
The race starts on wide pavement and then there is a FENCE in the woods you can’t see, and also can’t ride through, hello, after 50 feet, narrowing the course to one lane. This was going to be bad.
Off we go, already bar to bar just lined up, but luckily I was in a fast line and squirted thru like I do (why dont races end after 100 yds?) and got up to like maybe 25th ish? into the u turn and chicane, which now I had dialed. Into the woods, moving up a bit, though only on the runs as passing is just not possible in there. 38×19 felt great. Oh, heard what sounded like a huge crash behind me in the start, surprise. Man, this group is mental and scary and I did not like riding with them at all. Sorry guys.
Pop out of the woods and everyone shifts and rides away on the pavement. Now I am last wheel of the group. I kill myself on the successive trail turn run sections to pass, only to come to the next pavement, and they all jump around me. FAAAAHHHHK. This goes on for several laps. I felt like I was holding on to it for the first 25-30 minutes. Then I totally shut down. Dead. Done. Just rode around and finished, probably dead last, I would not know, results were not posted online.
Noah then raced. There were 4 kids on cross bikes in the under 12! Then the usual MTBers. Off the went, 4 wide, banging bars, sprinting up the road! It was so cool. They came out of the woods with a local kid in first, Noah chasing in second. He clawed back by the end and it was almost a sprint! Not quite, but wow, that was cool, it was a real race, only with little people! He won 5 bucks and got a medal! He was sooo psyched. Hats off to Cyclonauts for a super fun event there. Every race should do a one lap kids race, none of this around the parking lot crap. Well, that is good too, but there is a black hole between 6 year olds and 13 year olds who get to do the junior race. We need one lap races for 8-12. Note to promoters.
Monday and Tuesday I was destroyed. I tried to jog Tuesday, only did 10 minutes, could not even keep going and walked back.
Wednesday I hit Catamount. Of course, true to form, I had to build a bike first. I planned to do 4 laps so I needed gears. So I 1×9′d the hart tail. Worked awesome. I got there and they shortened the 4′s to 3 laps cause of the darkness. OK. Off we go, me stiff as hell, but doing ok. The Jamie Driscoll Show and Andy Bishop and all those guys, about 8 of them, GONE. I was doing well in 12th. Then I moved up to 10th. Second lap and we are chasing two guys, trading pulls, I was in a group of 3. Then, all of the sudden, half way through lap 2, I was done. The legs were not sore, my HR dropped, I just could not GO. Period. Just out of gas. So I rode around half a lap slow, low HR, just SLOW and all these people passed me.
By the start of lap 3 I was better, and decided to try harder. I had a better lap, faster, but still not near my usual effort level.I finished 20th, but 2 minutes faster than last week, where I started late. But everyone was faster so the course must have been faster. I was not even wrecked when I finished, and when I do SS (and am in the lead…hmmm…) I ride 20% harder than that shit. So, I think I would have hung in for maybe 12th ish had I not folded like a cheap lawn chair.
That was the last one, next week is a BBQ, then the cross series starts. I seem to have peaked 3 weeks ago. I should have done the MTB race last weekend not Blunt. I feel fast after MTB races, Blunt ruined me. It Blunted me. I am blunt.
Ok, that is all I got. I will post photo’s later, I gotta go teach college now. Shit, I really should have prepped.
I may not be riding much, but I is getting me some awesome new stuff for cross season! THANK YOU to Specialized, Blue, and The Pages!Now I will be slow, but look ridiculously fast.
Tonight was Catamount. I decided to ride there and skip football practice as I need some rides. I could not find my helmet of course. It was in the back seat of the truck at soccer practice. Took a while searching for it. Then I took one of the kids lids instead. As we all know, they ride in my old ones anyway.
Then, I took off and hit the road, and quickly realized that while 32×16 feels tough on the trails, but on the pavement its like riding a tricycle. Its hilly for a few miles and then more or less flat for a total of 10 miles or so. Thaaaaat tooook foooooor eeeeever.
I had fully intended to ride the 4 lap race tonight and get lapped by Jamie Fahking Driscoll, since I won two in a row and the idea of ME being called a sandbagger is laughable on so many levels. Well, of course I missed the start by 5 minutes so I had to do the 3 lap again. However, I missed that start too. As I was scurrying down to the start I saw them go. Damn. I took off and on the first hill I caught the tail end of the strung out 35 plus group. The course this week was uphill, then down and up again, then a downhill, around the pond, and back up hill, then somehow three more uphills with no downhills in between, then back to the start, which is uphill. UGH. I am getting so sick of racing on the hill side. The trail sides have been too wet. Not sure why tonight it was not the course as it was dry as a bone.
Anyway, I was pretty blown just getting to the race, as I spun my wee little brains out. Then the first lap I had to ride my guts out on the endless hills trying to catch and work through the field. I probably went too hard, plus the hills on this course were steeper and slower to enter, so I had to hump the shit out of the 32×16 to get up them. I barely made it up a couple. On the first lap! This is not good. The single speed is NOT your freind when you dont have your climbing legs. Then its just slow.
Half way through lap two I started feeling better and kept killing myself. Lap three, more of the same. I was able to really really make it hurt, so that was a good sign.
Anyway, got home and checked the results, but was surprised to see that I won. WTF. I was only like 4th overall (age groups go off in 2 waves) but it was about 20 seconds total time difference. So I am happy with that. Of course, now I feel like an ass for not doing 4 laps, but at least I tried. I hope no one is bad mouthing me. Hell, I am on a single speed so cut me some slack yo!