Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Royal baby? Who cares, this is Royalview!

The Royalview race was a freakishly fast race. The conditions were perfect and this course has turns! It started with a climb up the road around a mile I think, then into the tight singletrack. I passed Lorson on the road at the top of the road then he made a dodgy pass just before we hit the woods, the race was on! I had figured he wanted to be in front to slow me down a bit in my element but I knew of a passing zone up ahead and shot back around him in a similar dodgy fashion.
After the pass I picked up the speed and caught up to Rudy Sroka. Down the paved road again and into the yellow trail we went. Rudy knows this trail and was freaking nailing it. I thought he was gonna drop me in the first couple miles! He finally slowed a bit and I passed him, not because he was going too slow, but because I wanted to put some bodies between me and Lorson.
 I settled into a sustainable pace with a younger expert Jake Walters. We traded the lead back and forth. He knew the course pretty well but on lap three I felt the need to pick up the pace because I know Lorson always has a strong finish and every time I heard a noise in the woods I feared it was him closing in on me. 
 I finished 2nd with the obvious Suppan in first. I will be sending him an application for a pro license soon. He is racing with school kids at this point and he damn near stayed with Dave Walker the whole time! Franek gave us all a bit of a break by biting it on the first lap and jacking up his hand. Hopefully it wont affect the rest of his season. I would have loved to see what he could have done if he had started racing 20 years ago. Being the father of an Olympic runner he must have a pretty high VO2. But for me I just try and hold onto what I have and limit my losses as I age. I may never see the top step again but I still enjoy it so why stop now.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Ohhhh Andy, get busy livin'

It's been a pretty dismal season for me so far but the last couple weeks have been a bit more fun. The Reagan Park TT had been threatened all week by the weather, but surprisingly on race day it was fairly decent. Definitely not record breaking conditions but not the muddy massacre many had been expecting. I usually do well on this course and my Groovy is well suited for the tight turns. Suppan and Franek were off first and second so at least I didn't  have to worry about getting passed by those two.
On the Reagan side I was actually catching Franek a bit but after the road crossing he all but disappeared. Obviously he has figured out how to handle his machine now. I caught Suppan on the Huffman section and it was obvious his previous week in the mountains had left him tired.
Franek took the win and I got my first second place this year, which was a much needed confidence boost.

Then later that week it was off the Raystown for the second time this year. Zac and I found a climb even steeper than the Bigfoot vs. Steve Austin ascent. It topped out at 31% and was a mile long. Don't look for this on your Raystown map cause it ain't there, and I can assure you that you don't want to find it anyways. I rode it the whole way, and my bike was so vertical that the tip of my saddle was trying to penetrate me like a Shawshank family reunion.
The trails were dusty and fast and Zac tried desperately to beat Jeramiah Bishop's KOM on the Switch DH. Zac goes downhill with the reckless abandon that only a teenager with no job living at home could muster. Neither of us had the legs or willpower to attempt the Hydro loop KOM, I think it would take someone like Steve Twining to break that one.
We did meet up with Jeff Cochran for a ride there too. Jeff took off down Rays Revenge as if this was his last day on earth. He was absolutely destroying that section, all wilst  hooting and hollering like an amish kid looking at his first JCPenny catalogue. Alas his fun was disrupted as he sheared off his rear derailluer with a stick.
Up next will be the Royalview XC, a new course which I haven't much, but has some twisty stuff so we will see.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Getting my butt kicked by the T-STORM

Someday  this pain I feel will be useful to me, I hope.
Yes it has been a long time time the last update, let's see if I can remember anything I have done.

Oh yeah I did the state mtb race at Chestnut. I was fit and fresh for it and had good hopes of doing well. The 40+ had the largest expert class too, which seems to be a trend I think now. Soupcan took off like a raped ape and was never seen again, with Franek taking 2nd. I have all but given up hope of ever staying with these two again so I set my sights on 3rd but even that was spoiled by Pirasek who is really on form this year. The only saving grace was that I held off a hard last lap charge from Lorson to hold onto 4th.

A few weeks later it was time for the dreaded double down at the Knob. Six laps of shear delight further accentuated by the last minute inclusion of the Over Under section. Mix that with looming rain, which hit on lap five and you have yourself a Rodney King style beating that will haunt you for days. At least Soupcan spared us his wrath this time and went on vacation instead. I managed 3rd here, which for me was a best case scenario in a race this length.

Two weeks later it was time for Raystown vacation. The best time of the year for me. We were there the week Ohio had torrential rain and flooding. It did rain there some too, however that place can take the rain better than anything in Ohio.  I got about 110 miles of trail in those 4 days of riding and had a great time. A local guy told me about an unknown trail with a 30% climb that was nearly a mile long. I'm pretty sure I saw Steve Austin fighting Sasquatch at the top in my delirious state of mind.

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