Saturday, October 13, 2007

Utah Cyclocross Race #3

Whew. Did I ever go down hard during the race today. Better the bike than me though......

Race Course:
The race started at the Rocky Mountain Raceway and then dumped you in the center of it where grass and barriers waited patiently for you to trip on. After remounting your bike, the course shot you out of the raceway on pavement followed by a very sketchy u turn that was laced with tiny pebbles most of the way to a run up, which was a flight of stairs. The course then sent us to the outside of the raceway on an off camber dirt singletrack section which led conveniently to another very off camber grass section better known as the "green monster". The green monster consisted of two 90 degree turns, the first of which took you straight up the grass to where the other 90 degree turn awaited you. This was the official "run up" where you needed to jump off the bike at the first turn and boogy up the grass and remount after the next 90 degree turn. After remounting, you road the off camber grass onto a paved path that took you back into the stadium for another round of fun for a total of 45 minutes.

The Race:
So I mentioned I fell down and went boom boom today. Yep. I had a solid start and was in the the lead. I even won some swag for being leader of the first lap too. That was cool. I like swag! But back to the "I fell" part... I was heading into the barrier section and the next thing I know I am struggling not to fall on top of my bike that had decided it was done for the day and was trying to take a nap in the grass. Boy that stuff happens SOOOOOOO fast. So I think to myself, no problem, pick the bike up and go - you still have your lead. So I do and the handlebars are cranked to the left a good amount. DANG IT!!!!!

My first thought was to just straighten them quick and get back in the race and maintain the lead but considering the bike was just built up not even 20 hours before this race I opted for "safety first" and decided to take the time to tighten everything and make sure things were TRULY in working order vs fixing the bars on my own in a hurry and unknowingly heading out on a bike that was being held together by gum.

So the gal in second gets by as I trot out of the course, through the pits and back over to registration where luckily the Contender Bicycles tent was set up. Nope, I had nothing in the pits, no wheels, no bike, no tools.......I mentioned tool? Yeah that's me. But at the Contender Bicycles tent I found the nicest guy who helped me straighten and most importantly tighten things up on the stem and headset.

By the time I got going again and back in the race I certainly knew that I was going to be playing "catch up" the rest of the race. So I chose to plan on closing the gap to 1st place the best I could which I did with each lap. But unfortunately it wasn't enough by the time the race ended and 2nd place was my destiny.

The one thing that I was really excited about though, was that during my fall I didn't even think about my ribs and protecting them nor did I get any kind of jabbing pain from them either! I haven't raced on them in 2 months so that was great news because I didn't know what to expect today with them. Although the ribs are still finicky they are truly better now which I can say with confidence.

The Kona bike was a fast and light sweet running machine with the prettiest little pink clamps on the end of the cable wires and I am grateful to our sponsors for letting us ride on such a nice bike.

But I do think I ought to put the second one together ASAP because apparently I am going to need it according to Bob-bay who reminded me that at the first 07 NMBS race in Arizona this year, I was crashed into leaving me again with a tweaked headset. So if I am on the same path for Cyclocross (a great thing result wise actually!!), I need that second bike NOW. :)

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