The Women's A race was fun but very uneventful with no issues for me happening. But I definitely made up for that in the Men's B race........ I started on the back row, or at least I tried to for their race. Some of the guys begged me to get in front of them then and there on the line. That was funny.
***picture by Catherine Cagle from cyclocrossworld.comOnce the race started things were going well. I was making a lot of headway getting my rump towards the front of the field. Some guys were like "Yeah!!! Nice!!" as I passed them and others would immediately attack and surge which is good. Makes for better racing and racers as I need all the practice I can get pushing myself beyond my limits.
I started losing the plot at about the 25 minute mark, probably from fatigue of just killing myself the last few days and started making poor decisions and doing dumb things. I was still going fast but my ability to make smart choices declined greatly. First I dropped my chain on some singletrack. Whoops! There went 4 spots just like that with a snap of my fingers. It is good racing with the boys because it simulates World Cup style racing where they are on you like glue, waiting and wishing something would derail your efforts. They got their wish today!
The next disaster was a corner on pavement. Envision a 6' wide paver path that hits up against another 6' wide paver path at a 90 degree angle. Now visualize dry leaves covering the sidewalk that you are turning onto along with a rock wall. Now think high speeds (you are on pavers on a slight downhill). Now imagine coming into the corner big ringing it, WAY too hot, body upright, bike below you trying to make the turn. Leaves suck is all I have to say. They served as a slip and slide today more than a beautiful thing that you would want to take a picture of. I was halfway through the corner and the next thing I heard was "Sppphhhhhhhhhhh" and I found myself fish tailing back and forth and even sideways a bit as I was coming out of the corner with a blown tubular tire. I was all over the sidewalk doing my best to control it and keep it upright which I DID. I still cannot believe I did. Some gal that was standing there after the commotion ended was like "NICE save". Holy Toledo batman I had to clean me shorts after that one but I was in one piece though, so I got my other bike (I love cross!!) and finished the race pretty dumbfounded.
So all in all, I won the Women's A race and would have made it darn close to Top 5 in the B Men's race according to the announcers that were predicting where I would end up if all had gone well. But in my mind all did go well because I walked away using all my limbs and was upright. Sometimes that is all you can ask for.