Sunday, November 11, 2007

Rum River race report

There was no race on Saturday, so I got some hill repeats and a long yoga session in, plus a run earlier in the week. Probably the most non-race training I've done in a month! Didn't do much good today though.

I liked this course last year and was looking forward to it. Probably before I figured out what I'm good at, which doesn't always correspond to what I enjoy. I headed out with Cat6 recruit Matt and his little brother Luke, who was doing his first 'cross race. We got a late start, but still enough time for a couple of laps, which proved that the race was pretty much the same as last year. Flat and fast, but at least there were a couple of runups.

Lined up in the first row, but after the start whistle blew I dropped my chain! Dammit. By the time I got it shifted back on, the entire field passed me. By the time we got to the first runup it was so backed up that it was a walk up. Literally. There goes the race. I battled my way back up a bit, but by the end of the race drifted back again. Missed clipping out the barrier by the cemetery - bam! When people hit the barriers there you can hear it all the way across the course! Oh well.

I did have some fun hamming it up for some photographers in the wooded section of the course. They were right near a big bump in the singletrack, and I was playing leapfrog with a small group. Spying the photographer, I thought I'd catch some air on the bump. Hopefully he caught that - that was fun!

Watching the A race was probably the highlight. Bjorn and Aric were battling it out, but Aric got a flat and dropped back quite a bit. The rest of the race was just watching him battle his way back up. Which he did, amazingly, although not quite to Bjorn, who had a teammate draft (yes, it was that kind of race). After Bjorn used up his teammate and spit him out as Aric was getting close, Bjorn rode away. Last weekend Aric rolled a tubular and fought his way back up to pass Bergman to take 2nd. It's easier to do in a more technical race like the Grumpy's race - all he had to do was execute well and wait for Bergman's inevitable bobbles and crashes. Unfortunately with Bjorn there are very rarely bobbles, crashes or rolled tubulars and flats, so with them it seems to be a question of whether Aric can make it without a mechanical. Technically Aric is perfect and his unconventional dismount is sweet to watch. Anyway, awesome spectating watching Aric move up through the field, as well as some other mini battles.

Which reminds me - I think I've been pretty much turned off to tubulars. Watching all the flats, rolled tubulars, etc. with various racers, in addition to the big pain in the @$$ of gluing them, I don't see that it's worth it, at least at my level. I can run my clinchers down to 30/35 psi if there are few pinch flat dangers, and I've yet to get a flat or roll my tire. Ever. So I'll be sticking with the clinchers until I'm an elite racer with my own pit mechanic. Which is never.

The battle of the Lindas was anticlimactic (well worded my Linda S.). Linda C. had a problem with her seatpost clamp which pretty much put her seat out of commission. Before that they were right with each other. This seals the very close and exciting CRY competition for the Lindas. Congrats to both Lindas for some awesome racing and pushing each other to the limit! Hopefully there will be another good battle for the state championship!

I'm a little cranky after really realizing that my fitness is slipping (or everyone else is getting faster). Must have something to do with the minimal training I've been doing during the week. With the advent of the dark all I want to do is hibernate until the weekend when I'm not stuck in a cube while the sun shines. Then I'm willing but the legs are not. Lack of fitness also makes me tired at the end of the race which means the technique slips, which probably annoys me more than the lack of fitness. Guess I just need to harden the fcuk up and get out and ride eh? Wish I knew what I did right at the Twine Ball race.