Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Dismal Dash

    I had to get up at 4:00am on Sunday morning, the 14th. To make it worse, it was the night of the time change, so I lost an extra hour of sleep. I gather my stuff and was off to pickup fellow teammate John Tardy. Three and a half hours later, we finally arriveed in Suffolk, VA. There we met up with Eric, our other team member racing that day. Cat 5's were going to be the third group to start. The course was a fairly flat 12.5 miles out and 12.5 miles back. I was the first of our team to start. Heading out, I was immediately hit by a steady headwind. It made the first half very difficult, but coming back was much easier. I had saved a little bit of energy to push hard over the last 5 or 6 miles. I even passed one of the hardcore time trial guys that had passed me on the way out. These guys have dedicated TT bikes with full carbon fiber wheels, teardrop helmets, and do TT's all the time. When I finished, I was surprised how tired and sore I was. It's hard to pu out constant 100% effort for an hour and 9 minutes, but that time put me in 14th place out of 49 racers in my class. Eric came in at 26th and John was 40th. Everyone had fun and even with the wind, the weather cooperated, keeping the rain away. I think I am going to do more TT's. There's another flat TT in Chesapeake in April, the Mill Mountain climb TT, and the Wintergreen ascent.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Bedford MTX finals

    Last Sunday was the final race in the Mountain Cross series. After two races, I was in 5th place overall, 19 seconds from 3rd. The weather was perfect. 60+ degrees and sunny. The course was also longer, with more singletrack than the previous races. And most of it was actually dry! As the race started, I knew I had 3 people to keep an eye on. Dave Tompkins in 3rd overall, Mark Zhu in 4th, and Warren, who was right behind me in 6th. Mark raced in Sport class, so he had a 2 or 3 minute head start. Dave and Warren were in my class. The first last, Dave and I went fast and furious. It would be our fastest lap by 30 seconds. After that, we got into a pattern. Dave would pull away on the flats on his geared bike and I would catch him on the long grassy climb with the singlespeed. On the 3rd lap, we caught Mark. Starting the 4th, Mark tried to pull away on the paved part of the climb, Dave hung with him and passed at the top. I had to sit back and watch, I was maxed out on the ss. Half a lap later, I had them back in my sights. Warren had faded a bit, so these two were my only focus. On the last lap, Mark was looking tired. Once I got past him, he fell off quick. I could see Dave about 50 yards ahead, but there was no way to catch him. We were both maxed out. In the end, he finished about 20 seconds ahead of me, in 3rd place for the day. This is how we finished for the series too. I got 4th, Dave 3rd, Scott Fitzner was 2nd, and Paula Schimizzi was the overall winner. She deserved it. She gets out there and puts her heart and soul into her races.
    I can't wait for this series next year. It's always a good time with good friends. Kenny Palmer does a great job putting on these races. Now on to the rest of the racing season.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Bedford MTX #2

   Ok, just a quick note about last week's race. I've been slacking and not blogging this week. The super wet trails at Falling Creek Park meant that much of the course would be on pavement and grassy feild. There was on section of very nice, dry singletrack. The race started at 6pm, meaning everyone needed lights. It also meant that the temperature would be around freezing. The race went great for me, I felt good and pushed hard. I ended up in third place. I was very happy with that. Now, in the overall standings, I'm 19 seconds out of third. Tomorrow is the final race of te series. The course should be about twicw as long as the first race and have a little bit of every type of trail. The weather will be perfect. Sunny and close to 60 degrees! Last week I rode Quinn's Raleigh singlespeed 29er and I will use it again tomorrow. I really like that bike. A 29er ss will be in my future this year!