It was super windy the first couple days of last week. On one miserable training day I counted 11 trash cans blown out in the street. It was like an obstacle course for cars because the trash cans were blowing out from both sides and then rolling back to the curb so that the cars had to slolom around them.
It was strangely windy, even in the restroom.
Still, it's pretty hard to complain about the weather in So-Cal... I guess it was just kite weather that day.
I met up with Banner and we did hill repeats until my legs were jelly.
It never gets old... after the miserable wind of the day before (I spent most of my ride picking grit out of my eyes) I rewarded myself with a mid ride lunch at the Kitchen.
Veggie and avocado with pesto, and turkey with veggies and a smokey cheese and mayo (chipotle mayo?) Whatever... tasty.
The next day I ran into Pat at the Bowl and led him out while he practiced sprints... here he is demostrating perfect form for a low speed sprint.
The night before I left for AZ and NORBA #1 I went on a night hike up Echo Mtn with friends.
It was Troy's first time hiking at night, and he was a little intimidated at first.
NOVA!!!! (NORBA #1)
The Helen's/Subaru/Fisher team was rolling strong in AZ!
Here is Alex B. on his way to winning the Expert TT.
Although I heckled John for taking the "girly" line (no offense ladies, I know many of you rode it) he threw down a rediculously fast TT time for 2nd in his Expert cat. which put him hot on Alex's wheels for the overall.
I can tell he's been training and it should really pay off this season!
That night I let Brooke trim my hair. I have to say, she did a pretty good job for her first time ever cutting hair.
The next day Brooke raced in the morning and got 3rd! It looked like a pretty exciting race, and 2nd place was within reach but a small tactical error made it tough to claim. It was obvious from Brookes description that she is learning how to race smarter. A lot of the time that is more of an advantage than fitness!
I will see if I can get her to write up an account of her race.
After she finished she still had the legs to pre-ride the course with me, Alex and John.
It was so hot out that we all cut the elastic off the sleeves of our jerseys!
After we rode Alex and John raced the Super D stage of their race.
After the race we went downtown for lunch so I could fuel up before racing Short Track.
Rollin' on Dubs
A Flossy Whip in Downtown Fountain Hizzles for Shizzle.
SATURDAY NIGHT LIGHTS
It was weird racing at night. Parts of the course were pretty dark and it was a little unnerving to be going that hard and not really be able to see the ground.
Semi Pro is a lot different. There were over 50 starters in the race, and they were all fast, and they all fought tooth and nail for every spot on the course.
I don't have enough races to get called up to the front of the pack, but I got an okay start and I passed some riders to get into the top 10.
Although I wanted to finish in the top 10, I got elbowed to the ground and had to settle for 13th. I was pretty happy with that, considering how many racers there were and the fact that they were ALL fast!
The next days XC race was great for Alex and John. Alex won and John got 3rd after putting in plenty of face time at the front of the race. Not sure exactly how long he pulled for, but he definitely set pace for good chunk of the race.
My race was not so hot... after not getting a call up again, I started around mid pack in a group of over 70 riders. I gradually worked my way up to the top 10 (again) before the course got super narrow and it was almost impossible to pass anyone.
I sat behind a group of about 5 guys and rode about 25 watts under threshold while the lead group dissapeared!
After about 26 minutes of this me and another rider were FRUSTRATED! At first we snapped at each other but then we patched things up and he got pissed at the riders who were slowing things down and blocking the course. It's tough to say what's right and wrong, afterall everyone is racing, but that doesn't make it any easier on you when you are watching your chances of a good race go down the drain because another rider is going too fast/all over the trail and you don't have Adam Craig like passing skills.
Eventually I snapped and tried a tough pass on a rough line... I double flatted.
I lost around 7 min changing the tire and moved to the way back of the pack with some of the Junior Ex. riders.
When I came through the start/finish area I wanted to change wheels (for a tubeless wheel with sealant in it) and was told that the Tech Zone was for Pro and Junior Ex riders only (?) and I couldn't even take a spare tube. I have to say, the Pit officials were pretty UN-cool. They DQed on kid for using a 3-way wrench to adjust his seat hight and wouldn't let another rider exchange a FAULTY CO2 for a good one. I'm all for following the rules but a friendly attitude goes a long way too. This is MOUNTAIN biking after all... no offence Roadies.
With 3 laps to go on a course that was eating tires and tubes I was already 9 min and 70-some riders behind... I was pretty pissed, and for the first time ever I DNFed.
I got over my frustration pretty quickly though, when we all went out to eat! I guess a little food and drink was a nice compensation for a too-short race.
Me, Alex, Jason, John.
Jason double flatted in the XC too and finished right behind me in the Short Track.
Mad Prop's to Ohio
In the end found that there is a steep learining curve in the Semi's, which was good because I learned a lot!
Next race: Sea Beaver!