Monday, December 10, 2012
The State CX Weekend
Where to begin...First, I would like to thank my coach Jeff Winkler at Fascat Coaching. I'm thinkin without him my give-a-damn would have broke about a month ago!! If any of the 10's of you that read this are thinking about hiring a coach, you should look him up at http://www.fascatcoaching.com/
Second, If you're not sure which CX mud tires are good? Go with the Clement PDX, I raced these over the weekend, Saturday was a little slick but Sunday was more or less a mud race and I was never worried about losing grip, EVER!!
Moving on, I started the march to this race in July, this is by far the most training I have ever put in for one race. Did it work? I think so, I had some good results with a couple of wins in there for good measure, but in the end you can't be great every race.
I learned early in the 2012 CX season that, while I raced ok on Saturdays, I always had a better race on Sunday. With that in mind I wanted to race the day before the state race to get that "ok" race outta me and this is what I did. The only bad thing about this Saturday race was I would be lining up in the open class for the first time due to no masters classes and in my infinite wisdom, I upgraded to a 2 when I had the points to do so...
The open race
I lined up with 9 other riders and after riding a couple of laps for inspection I knew it would be a tough day. The plan was to race for 45 minutes, see how I feel and go from there.
Go, we're off and I settle into 3rd as we grind up a false flat in the grass, at this point we weren't going fast at all and I was thinking this won't be so bad then we hit the hill. At the top I had slid back a spot or 2 and was kinda hatin life but press on I did, then we came to the steps. Which weren't bad as steps go but it was about 20-30 seconds of running up steps.
I managed to stay in contact with the group for a couple of laps and then I had to ease a bit and wave goodbye. Now I was riding in no mans land with one or two guys still behind me, so I kept racing. Eventually I'm riding in 9th outta 10 with 10th on my wheel. He seems to be content with my pace so on we ride. I pull him around for 3 more laps and on my last lap I turn and say to him you're on you own and pulled the plug. I raced for 45 minutes and suffered horribly the whole time, it was not a good day for me AT ALL!!!
The State Race
The pic above pretty much says it all. I felt 100% better on the bike compared to the open race. I gotta be honest, I was a little worried after that race on how I would be going for the State race.
On Sunday morning when it was finally light enough to see the ground I could tell it had rained at some point over night. I was thinking to myself it should either be bone dry as it has been all year or full on CX muddy the way it should be conditions. I kinda started to rant about Mutha Nature and called her a whore...well...I guess she heard me and didn't like what I had to say so she kindly rained on us for about 15 minutes just before the masters race, she was even so nice as to make it stop after the first lap!! It was muddy and a bit slick before, NOW it was how it should be!!!
GO!!! I slot into 2nd straight away and am on the eventual winners wheel. As we are descending this off camber hill that lead to a pretty fast left hand sweeper which ended at the bottom of the steep hill. I ease up a bit and give some room between me and 1st just in case. The gut was right, he grabs too much rear brake and slides out in front of me. This had me grab a fist full of rear brake and the back end steps out on me so I let off, the PDX immediately hooks up and shoots me by, disaster averted!!!
At the top of the hill I'm still in 2nd with Mr. Powerslide behind me. It stays this way for a minute until we get into some off camber turns. I came in to one a little fast and pushed the front and had to dab, this allowed 3rd to get by and of course it was up hill out of this particular section so I lost his wheel...grrrrr!!!
So I drill it and stop the gap from growing. At the steps now, he is still within reach at this point but I am going blind with pain now and eventually have to ease for a minute to recover. Back to coherent, 1st and 2nd are riding away and there's not a damn thing I can do about it...at this point I keep the gas on ride away from the rest of the field. An exciting first lap huh?!
About mid way through the race I see 4th trying to run me down and gaining ever so slightly, so I push the pace for a lap and open the gap to something he can't close and this is the way we finished.
Am I content with a 3rd? Mostly, I made it on the podium, which is a good thing considering how long I've been after one of those jerseys, I rode well, pretty much mistake free, my remounts were faster than they've been all season and my fitness was where it needed to be, thanks coach!!
A win would have been SUPA SWEEEEEEEEEET but it wasn't meant to be this year...