So it’s not that much of secret or maybe it is .. Mark has told me what to do… for some time now ( okay so really riding my training plans). When I looked at May 11th I was like oh sweet Race Platte, I failed to see the and then ride for 5-6 hours afterword… That’s a long day in saddle. So Friday I dropped my stuff at Ryan and Roxy’s and went to bed somewhat early. I got up super early did the MIKO the dog thing and was out the door at 7:15 am. I figured it takes usually less than 2 hours on cx bike to ride to Platte so it shouldn’t be a big deal. Get there take off some morning clothes. Mix my Skratch Lab stuff and maybe ride the first climb a bit.
The start is le mans style it was kind of fast. I didn’t have problems finding my bike and somehow ended it up being first one on to the climb. I didn’t really want that place but my slowing down a bit didn’t really invite anyone coming around… Okay. I guess I will lead in to single track. After about 1/2 lap we had 4 person gap with me still leading with Gersib/Pinkleman and some skinny bloke from IA. And then I his something and started to loose air. Stopped tried pumping it up, tubeless wasn’t sealing. I figured it would be faster to ride on almost flat tire to the bottom and change it at the transition area. Sure enough i had so little pressure in the tire I was rolling the corners super badly. Got to the transition area. Grabbed a tube… Change it and then i couldn’t get any air in the tube. It’s been so long since I had that tube it just went bad. Changed the tube again. After this turn of the events it just turned to training ride. It took me some time to get going. But I knew my chances of doing anything are pretty much gone. So for remaining 3 hours or so I just rode in circles and enjoyed the day. I opted out of going for 7th lap as I still had to ride home and the wind was pretty stiff.
Riding home was not so much fun. It was pretty windy…At some point i really questioned the sense of this. It was either the wind or the This American Life episode i was listening to was not cutting it. I stopped changed it to Pandora and rolled toward Pflug rd. I knew after that It would be mostly cross wind after that. It took a while but I got home in just under 3 hours and 3 miles short of 100 on MTB. That night MK got gyro platters from Greek Islands which is ate and promptly passed out.
I honestly think it doesn’t get any better than Platte for MTB racing around here. Even though I always have horrible race results there I enjoy that place tremendously. It was great to see and hang out with everyone. Congrats to Dale Pinkleman, Carly Thomsen and Mark on their state championships. Job well done by all of you .
Syllamo’s revenge is next hopefully sans flats.
Picture is by one and only Matt Wills thanks buddy
Last week while riding to work on my SS i heard a pop then there was some banging… I though this might be loose rear hub. Nope it was the frame it cracked. My Nature boy was broken.
Clean break as they say… I rode the shit out of this bike. Couple of Gravel Worlds, Dirty Kanza the first Royal…and 2 years of SSCX… The fine folks at all-city sending me a new frame… so that’s super cool. Should have it build up for DK for sure in case my other Single speed wont get here… I guess the power meter is paying off.. Too much power… just kidding. I need to write about that sometimes.
This is second weekend in row where I was out of town for a race. This one was a bit closer in Lawrence, KS; more specifically Clinton Lake. For those of you not familiar I will say this, Clinton Lake if probably one of the most challenging and technical trails in Midwest. The trail is divided into upper line and low line upper line is pretty rocky technical the lower line is a bit flowier… Any who … I got to the parking lot around 4:30 only to see the one and only Ryan Atkinson and the ditch guy…
Little side story even today I don’t know what the real name of the ditch guy is… Week before last he was the guy who ended up in the ditch at start of Ouachita. This must be a great source of pride for him as he introduced himself as the ditch guy (I was wearing my twin six gear and he recognized me).
Back to the pre-riding we started pretty well until about 2 miles from the start I knocked and ripped a small hole next to the bead of the tire. While the whole was small, the location of the hole pretty much ruined the tire. I learned from years past about unforgiving rocks of this place. I did bring a spare tire with me. Good old trusty Ignitor. From there it was mad scramble to the bike shop for some Stans and mounting a new tire… I met up with rest of the MTB wagon crew and proceeded to set up my tent. After I completed the setup I realized I can still go and ride and splash the Stans around the tire a bit. I jumped on my bike and got good 25-30 min ride…
It was windy at night. As matter of fact it was so windy one of the polls from our Big Agnes Tent snapped and cut a whole in rain fly.. Crap… After proper rice and eggs and coffee I got kited up and went to test ride the tire. Then we got lined up for the start. The start was pretty hectic I relied on just riding around people and got to the single track in about 20 th place. Right where I wanted to be, From the 8 guys ahead of me in 6 hour I knew that 4 would not crack but I wasn’t sure about the other 4. I knew they went out pretty fast. I just sat in and started picking people off. The tactic was to stay as smooth as possible on the topside and punch it on the flowy bottom section.
This worked really well. I rode with Ryan Atkinson for better part of 2 laps. If you want to watch someone smooth on bike you should watch Ryan…he’s a great bike handler. Anywho things were going okay I caught a couple of guys in 6 hour and was progressing okay… until 2/3 through lap 3. I was counting on some water being available at the aid station, but alas it was empty.. .There were bunch of pretzels available for everyone though… I had to ride 4 miles without any water and I knew what was going to happen soon after… cramping. I pounded coconut water at the pit shoved bunch of pickles in my mouth and drank ½ the jar of pickle juice and hopped for the best. That was refreshing but at one of the technical climbs I stood up and cramped immediately. Off the bike and stretched a bit I saw 2 guys passed me I knew at least one was in my category. Slowly I started moving again and considering things started to look up. I passed one guy in my age group as he was having tire issues and passed the older gentleman at the start of the flowy section. I knew the guy behind me was losing air so each time I could punch it on the back side I would get in big chain ring and punch it. This was working pretty well. I estimated I had about 2 minute gap and after I cleared the last techy climb I relaxed a bit. Got 2nd in my 2 age group, either 6-7 overall.. Not too bad… Still some things to improve on, the water gamble cost me the top step but you live and you learn, 2 bottles next time.
Thanks to the MTB wagon crew and Chris Locke for putting on a great event. Up next smooth course that is Tranquility… this will be first time in 3 years I will race that venue ( i think) Looking forward not to battle rocks for change …
Just like that 2013 MTB campaign is underway. Just like last year it started off with Ouachita challenge. Unlike last year the cast of NE people was bit less. I ended up riding up with Corey Friday night stayed in some hotel made it in good time to Oden, AR. I like to call this part of country, God’s country but that is just me. If you never been to Arkansas you are missing out the place is great …. I mean look at this pictures.
It’ just great… While I always get bummed out about missing Swanson that feeling disappears pretty quickly once you ride some bikes. That’s what we did or at least try to do. Corey and I decided on riding big brushy instead of womble. Might as well get a something a bit more technical since you know, we didn’t get that far and Corey got a flat. I would say more like a tear in his sidewall. Second year in row someone with Racing Ron got flat I would say that’s probably not good rate as those tires are not cheap. I saw most of the locals were running saguaro in the rear and I was pretty happy with my TNT version of that tire. Big brushy is 6 mile section of the trail it’s got some technical sections some rocks some fun descents. I always thought I flows better backwards but its funny either way as out and back it’s about 2k feet of climbing pretty good way to test equipment and legs. I decided to run 25 psi front and rear the next day and probably would have gone a bit lower if I had to do it over again.
Wet meet up with Higgins’ and some Omaha people for dinner at the only place where you can get beer in town. We stayed at some cottage next to the river it was nice place and it had TV guardian so you know I felt pretty safe about staying there.
The race started off a bit mellower than last year. Some dude ended up in muddy ditch in first mile and it was amusing. The climb to single track is about 6-7 miles with couple of rollers. You want to be in good place without being gassed Corey and I just sat in and tried to place ourselves in front group before the single track. We tucked in the tail end of the group. Things were pretty good actually I knew a couple of people would pass me and they did; not riding MTB until last week we obvious the downhill sections were a bit slower than I would have like but nothing horrible.
The blowout mountain was next. What can I say about this section… It’s not that great there some climbs there is some hike a bike sections, pretty cool descent and couple more climbs. The hike a bike sections are akin to stairs in LOTR they are physically and emotionally draining. The thing which kept me going is the knowledge of sweet womble ahead. At some point I caught up with Terry Higgins he blew his rear shock … At some point I saw TWIN SIX samsie MR. Elwell fixing his chain. The road section was all head wind and I pulled quite a bit until I sat up and said something about people pulling through. Then it was time for womble. This trail is just sweet and compared to Ouachita it was bone dry, minus 15 creek crossings. I was feeling pretty good rest of the race was pretty common nothing to crazy… Passed couple of people got passed once I got on the gravel it was all business to get to the finish line. My moving time had me pegged at around 5:15 so I just mashed some potatoes for last 4 miles and was done …. Corey and Peat finished 10 minutes ahead of me….. Lack of MTB riding manifested itself but I’m not that nervous about it. Climbing was good and I cleared more technical sections than last year. I have improved my time about 15 minutes so nothing to complain about. Oh it was pretty messy affair as you can tell. Here Terry and I at the finish. Minus a broken spoke no mechanical so that’s better than last year…
The ride home was interrupted by me fixing Corey’s front tire with a plug. I hoped for the best as I knew we would ride though some crappy weather in MO. Bone Bender is next after this weekend it will see like a freaking highway… I must say the new ergon saddle i got was working really well.
Well there isn’t much to say about it. The race was pretty uneventful. Minus the two times someone almost crashed me out. Once 4 miles before finish once in the last corner. The last corner incident was pretty much the race someone chopped the corner and I had to slow way down. Got stuck in middle of nowhere… and got 5th. I learned quite a bit if the winds were not so wicket one of my attempts to get a gap would probably stuck but it didn’t happen. So group rides are different from races and races are different from group rides. that was pretty much covers that. Now I know 😀
Hopefully I will get to ride some MTB this weekend. Also my Stages Power meter is shipping his week. Hopefully it will be warm enough to ride our bikes.