Thursday, October 04, 2007

Radio silence has been broken...

I dropped off the face of the planet, and wish I had a picture that summed up what life has been like. Eat, ride, work, eat, work, work, work, race, work, drink, race, get a get the picture. Gotta get the liver ready for this. I now understand the old saying "life picks up speed..." What happened to this year. It's raining heavily again, what happened to the summer. Constant rain and drizzle can only mean one thing, Cross season is upon us. Its funny, I was never a big fan. While living in Reno I wouldn't race, hell wouldn't even go watch, just wasn't what I wanted to be doing. Who wants to ride in small circles hop over barriers on a road bike with knobbies. I'm a mountain biker, I like to get away. I now enjoy me some cross. It hurts like nothing else, and what else can I say about the racing action is intense, close and short. It's like a big family. I had always heard these things but by the time it all came around I was not in to the travel and putting on the chamois, I was thinking about sweet powder and giving the legs a rest. oh how things have changed. I have raced the last two weekends, both times on the official hangover that goes with a Sunday afternoon race.

Last year I raced a few races with little luck, and then lost interest, duty called and I had to work a bunch. My girlfriend and I also share a car and she took priority, travel and you get there is a long list of excuses. I must tell you that I am riding the fixed monster cross frame that Wade built me at all said events. Most people think that is crazy, never raced cross to racing it on a fixie, why not, like I have said before moderation has never been my strong point, or moderation but only in moderation. It is the bike I have, and I must stand by my one gear one mind motto for fear of being called a fake. haha, get the sarcasm. Well enough about the bike or was it my ego we were talking about. more sarcasm.

Race #1 Fort Stelllacoom Rad Racing uci
There were 13 or 15 or so of us on the line. It is dry and sunny, the course is almost dusty. Now for those of you who don't know this course has the longest run up in the country I am told, the Knapp run up after Dale Knapp. Running, oh how I love running. I have the hangover associated with celebrating someones engagement, I also have ever expectation of getting smoked. The gun goes off and I am near the front. I am feeling good, we hit traffic from the class in front of us and I lose a few feet on the front two. The long run up, followed by the downhill and I can barely see them. Think eggbeater. On the flats I have lots of power and reign them in a bit. Each of the five goes like this. I settle in to getting third, not bad, then someone flats and second is mine, first is really close, I miss it by about 10 feet. 2nd or first loser. I stay around for the awards and get a set of Racing Ralph tires. Not bad for 20 bucks. I smile have a beer and a coffee, yeah I was a bit confused and head home.

Race #2 Snohomish 1st race in the Seattle Series
Last year this race was the fourth in the series and my undoing. It was raining, super muddy, I was a bit sick and I feel apart. I think due to all the damage last year they moved it to earlier in the year to avoid a repeat. Well no luck there. The rain has returned to the Pacific Northwest, and on Sunday the rain was constant and heavy. The course was a soupy, sloppy mud fest, very crossy. There were 25 of us on the line, it was 50 degrees and I again had the hangover, I had worked a 10 hr day serving football fans beer before and after the local college game at my bar, then to relieve some stress indulged in a bit of elegant drinking, a couple Bulliet Burbons and some Belgian beer. Enough about that, the gun goes off and I charge to the front and take the lead about 1/2 way in to the lap and proceed to lay it down. I get a good gap and am feeling good, then I have no front brake, and then on the fourth lap my legs are not cooperating and I start going backwards. I go in to damage control mode and hold on for a 3rd place finish. I am happy but would have like to win it. I feel redeemed after last year, but again my legs did give out just not as bad, last year I ended up 8th or 9th out of 15 or so people.

This weekend is Crosstober out at St Edwards, and coming up in November our friends in Portland are putting together one hell of a weekend mark your calenders for the weekend of November 9th and 10th cause it is gonna be a time not to be missed, the Unofficial Official Single Speed Cyclocross World Championships. More info should be available here on Friday. I there will be a qualifying time trial on Saturday and then the race on Sunday, with a party in between I am told. I hope to see you all there. I will be talking about this more when I get more details.

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