Thursday, September 22, 2011

West Branch Mini-Enduro Recap

The race I had most dreaded all year is over and I have mixed feelings about it. I had several mechanical issues during the race. I broke a spoke early on in one of the rock gardens. The spoke went into my cassette virtually turning me into a hipster-fixie rider(sans goatie and Starbucks). I had to make a pit stop to fix that after the first full lap.
Once underway again I kept it mello until lap three when I was already 5 minutes down on Cochran and Franek, and who knows how far back from Clark. For once in my life I actually paced myself well and was getting faster with each lap. I was told the gap was down to less than three minutes on lap 4. By lap five I came around the aid station and was told that Franek was only 40 seconds up. I kept the pace high and caught him with about 3 miles to go.
We had a short conversation and he jokingly told me that Cochran wanted him to put a stick into my wheel when I came by. Here's the funny part, not ten seconds later I picked up a stick in my rear wheel that sheared two more spokes off. The spokes then went up into my rim and busted the Stan's liner causing my rear wheel to flat. No foul play was suspected by it was ironic and comical now that I think about it. I started to run with it but then figured that the wheel was already toast so I jumped back on and started riding it. I absolutely destroyed whatever rim was left hitting rocks and roots. But riding was faster than running until the tire bead broke loose from the rim. Then if I gave it too much gas the rim would just spin inside the tire.
I finally hobbled in and ended up fourth with a 5+hour ride. Despite the problems I was actually pleased. I rode well, had a good time, and can't complain about that. In the future I won't be running sub 1500 gram Stans wheels at Westbranch, but I think that stick was big enough to destroy pretty much anything.

It could have been worse. While cleaning my bike after the race I saw that my rear derailluer cable was only holding on by three strands. A couple more shifts and I would have been really screwed.

A few weeks until the last Knob race, in the meantime I'm just enjoying some of the last nice days of the year.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Chief bites it

But don't laugh too hard, you may be next!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Manitoc MTB race recap

For nearly a solid week leading up to the Manitoc race it was bone dry and sunny. Probably the only week ALL year with no rain. But that of course was too good to be true. The night before it rained about 1/2" and it was cooler and overcast at the start of the race. Lap one was pretty decent and I rode with Lorson and Cochran as we watched Clark and Adams disappear into the abyss never to be seen again.
Coming into the final climb on lap one I gave it some gas and had a little gap so I kept cruising, figuring I would get reeled in. It started raining(big shocker), and the trail became downright treacherous in areas. I tried my best to keep steady and not slide off the trail. I had the Nevagals set with 24psi which turned out to be perfect.
By lap three all hell broke loose on that trail. Staying upright was priority #1, and I ran more that day than I have in the last decade. I ended up third, with 2:28 and some change, a long slog for sure. Clark and Adams apparently stayed together for a sprint finish way ahead of me. So fast in fact that they destroyed everyone except for The Jedi(Dave Walker). Me thinks we will need a 46+ Expert class in the near future!
It was also good to see The Chopper(Jeff Pendleberry) come back to the dirt for a day to donate some blood again.

I miss that DRY Florida Singletrack!

The Chopper proved that too much road racing is bad for you.

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