Monday, October 8, 2007

hagerstown cross

First (two) cross race(s). Results here.

I started out near the back in a field of ~55, but quickly began passing. I heard the announcer say there was one rider way off the front, so I knew I needed to get busy quick.

There wasn't much pack riding in this field. Ability levels too disparate, I suppose.

This little rise on the back stretch was fun. I did most my passing on the flat stretches and gradual uphill sections.

But right after the little rise came this big rise--the ride-able run-up. I was slow up this beast. I lost ground to whomever I was riding with every time up this thing, but I seemed to recover much faster, and was usually able to put in a monster effort on the flat section just following the wall. I passed a lot of people just after this section.

The course was very dry, which led me to wonder what it would have been like had it been wet, or really wet.

Though it was a foggy morning, there was no precipitation.

Valerie and the girls were there. That was cool on its own, but Val also aided the effort by calling out my placing each time around. Eighth after one lap. Fifth after two laps. At the beginning of the final lap there were only three of us and we were riding together.

This is the last run up the wall on the final lap. I had made my move against my two riding companions some time before this. Looking back, this may have been a mistake. This guy caught me just below the wall and passed me on the way up. The other guy caught me soon after and put a gap on me with far superior cornering skills. I closed the gap on the final straightaway, but he held me off. By less than an inch.

I won a six-pack of beer and a case of one of those super-caffeinated sports drinks. Who drinks that stuff?


Ninety minutes later I lined up in the Men's B field. The field wasn't as big, maybe 30 riders, but clearly more experienced and savvy. Through the first lap I felt awful and could just barely manage to hang on near the rear. Gradually, I started feeling better and began moving up. I found a group of five to ride with, and did so steadily for about two laps, but when I sensed they were beginning to fade, I moved to the front and dropped them all. I picked off one more rider and then chased 11th place the whole last lap. He beat me by a bike length.

Good fun.


ehyde said...

If you drink a couple of those energy drinks before the next race you won't be losing ground to anyone up the run up.

UtRider said...

When it happened I felt really bad about you breaking your collarbone. However, now that you are reaping the benefits of your late summer break and destroying fields of mountain and cross racers I feel a bit of accomplishment. Just think what you could do with some skills?

By the way, have you received any emails after your dominating performance in the C race? :)

MTN said...

The beer is good for keeping ladybugs out of your strawberry patch. Cut the top off a couple of cans and bury them so the lip is just above ground. The lady bugs dig it and they will drown in the beer.