Fast and Furious Cross race Saturday 10/23/2011

ok. Here is how it went down.

I wake up the sound of rain in the rain gutters. What the predicted no rain. I head down stairs for breakfast. Turn on the coffee. Turn on the news and look outside, yup heavy drizzle. I didnt sleep well past 4 am. Oh well. The news says it’s dry in the race area 30 miles away.

Eat my oatmeal, coffee, pack a pb&j sandwich & a yogurt.
I check & triple check my mental list of items ( I need a checklist) I finally roll out at 730 about 30 min past when I wanted to go. Still raining, but less as the miles roll by. Sure enough dry on arrival.

I sell should have time for a preride but I’m moving slow and as they call for the first race I head out for a quick look see. 150 yards out I notice no helmet. Darn it, not gonna happen. Don’t wanna get yelled at. Head back to the car. First race starts.

Set up my trainer and head out for a recon hike, so many twists & turns it’s hard t make heads or tails of it. It’s similar to last years course but much different. The 15ft tall sand pile is different, the cedar shavings piles are now in 2 bars not one. I get what I can & head back.

U pay my fees after I go back to the car again for my OBRA license. Then to the tent & my trainer. I eat a trail mix bar about 140 cal. An hour out. I get on the trainer for 31 min. Not riding too hard just waking the legs up. Its about 52 degrees and I’m sweating buckets. Am I sick? Overtrained yesterday? Oh no just no fan, duh.

Finish 15 min before the start. Dry off & head to the porta pot one last time.

I put my bottle on the bike measured to about 14 oz. Just in case. Head over to the staging area, looks like the 1’s will be first. In the first 20 out of 180, just means I’ll be like the granny on the freeway being passed all day long. Oh well it’s my lot!

The race started at a pretty fast pace,  not wanting to burn out I try to keep pace but still keep up as best as possible.  The course is Very Dry, and fast, 1.8 miles in length.  First up is the Sand pile.  And the first lap there is a line up to get over,  definitely a walk up.  About 10 feet to the top run down back on the bike.   Long grassy section then some pavement, the a couple grass turns then the killer of all killers,  the Double your pleasure Barriers.  2 sets of double barriers with about a 50 foot space between the sets.  Dismount barrier barrier, run run run run barrier barrier barrier, not too painful the first time thru but it will be brutal as the laps go on.  More zigs and zags with about 20 surface changes, grass pavement gravel etc.  then come the double loop cedar shavings barns.  About 2 foot deep and a 30 foot semi circle. Times two.  Some straights with some long double backs, them more fast transitions between barns (this is a fairgrounds) a dizzying weaving section of about 100 feet with about 5 fast turns, then out into a fleshly plowed Pasture (luckily the clydes had just been there to flatten it down a bit) then thru the time center (with a count down clock) out to a nice 6 foot table top ramp (first lap was clogged and running up was faster, then it was rideable the rest of the laps) then a long straight with another set of barriers, a switchback to a 50 foot 45degree off camber section, another switch back around to a 4 step stair run up and back to the start.

All was going fairly well the first 4 laps.  Dismounts were ok. I had NO water to this point, and there was still time left on the 45 minute clock.  As I have never been beyond the 4 lap point as they take you off  at a certain time, I really put some energy into the last quarter mile of lap 4 trying to clear a couple spots as im sure im in 100th spot at this point.  I get to the finish and no flag, no bell no nothing.  OK I say to myself I guess I made it to the 5th lap.  Never done this before.

As the 5th lap starting I came around the switchbacks after the barriers and took the corner a bit too hot and had the front wheel lose traction and did a hip plant on the luckily softish muddy  clay soil.  I see MANY riders take the opportunity to pass and as I was in tent row the roar of the Get up go you can do it etc echoed in my head.  Back up and moving again I am headed for the stairs.  I am trying to catch those that just passed my and I “run” up the stairs put my bike down and for the life of me I cant find the pedals.  Im sure they were there, but they were both on the opposite side or something.  Im getting frustrated and finally decide enough is enough, I slide my leg over (as they say you should do anyhow) to the side where both pedal were hiding, I finally get clipped in and start to spin. And I mean SPIIIIIIIIIIIINNN,  no friction at all.  My first thought as I had no oxygen in my brain is  “ I don’t own this gear”  so I look down and of course the chain is neatly places inside the small ring on the bottom bracket,  I dismount AGAIN, and prepare to fix the chain and of course the first thought ALL cyclist have is how can I do this with out getting chain grease on my hands, the reality prevails and you grab it with you finger and place it back on…

Back on the road again. Well the rest of lap 5 went splendid as I decided to stay within myself and not do anything ELSE stupid.  So at the end of lap 5 again knowing it’s the end I once again pace up to try to gain one or two spots, and when I get to the line again, not flags, no one waving people off the course no nothing, maybe 2 minutes left (of the 45) and I think to myself, really are they going to do this to me.  At this point my goal is to finish this last lap, in one piece finish,  I still felt reasonably good and was having a good time passing and being passed by the same guys in the same group that all seemed to be racing together, mid pack.

Well I finished the last lap number 6.  (remember never been past 4 in the past) and in fact I was on the same lap as the leaders that also finished 6 laps.  Final time was 51:46.  I placed number 131 out of 182.  72 percent.  About where I have been.

Good things about this race:

Made my goal for finishing on the lead lap !!!  barely but good enough

I DID NOT Drink Water during the 52 minute race !!!  Nice.  Partly mental partly physical.

I road Really hard the day before and that didn’t effect me much, on fact I think a longer warm up or a bit harder warm up would have been beneficial. I felt best laps 2-6 for sure.

Overall a great race and looking forward to the last remaining I can get to.  I have one more Wednesday night race this week, the a week off till a week from Saturday.  Good training time.