Monday, August 9, 2010

Two Days, 3 Races, One Epic Fail. Quinn Podium.

Possibly the most unflattering picture Jess took of me. I could not stand after my "sprint."
Results: Psycowpath
The weekend was going to be long and hot I knew that. What I did not know was how poorly I would perform, and how obvious my lack of riding would become. Firstly, a huge thank you to RF and the whole Psycowpath crew for an amazing weekend of racing. Excellent planning and execution for all three races. Day one had two parts and began with a time trial around Lewis and Clark. Last year at this venue I did the marathon and felt I did pretty well. This year on a shorter course I felt terrible and had to hike a bike on the trail in multiple places. My legs felt like rubber and my breathing and heart rate were spiking after only a few minutes of mild effort. I just couldn’t figure out why. It may have had something to do with a crash on Sunday 6 days earlier that left me with either a bruised or cracked rib. My breathing was still a bit shallow and tight due to stiffness so it may have caused my lactate to build at an unreasonable rate. Either way, I was ridiculously slow. As a punishment to myself for being so crappy at the TT I decided to go to the afternoon race and torture myself at my favorite bike park, Tranquility. The name is really quite appropriate, even on a busy day I may see 10 riders the whole time I am there and my son can do the entire loop and nobody seems to mind us walking sections. Which by the way are fewer and fewer this year. The little dude will probably clear the whole course next year, but that is a different story. So, the race was to be a Short Track race. I have never tried it before so I was a bit leery at first.

Thankfully the Cat 3 40Plus group went off before us and I could see that they were taking it easy and not going too hard. The other great thing is that 3 laps took only 15 minutes. I didn’t fail in the morning race until about 15 min in so I figured maybe I could last. Heck it was only a year ago that I would rip this entire section in the dog and never change gears from the flat to the moderate climb that was the real race section here. At the start I went very easy hitting the climb at the back of our group of 9. I passed 4 guys along the way and entered the trees in 5th.
Then I hit a tree and fell about 10 seconds in to that section…great. Back to 8th as 3 passed me while I quickly got my yard sale out of their way. I jumped on no worse for the wear it was just a hard shoulder tag and a clean endo. The second lap was uneventful as I took the back and tried to see if I could put on a late surge on the final climb. Sadly, I could not. Instead I saw an opening at the very top and passed two guys right before the descent. I passed one last dude on the final straight and tried to sprint for I was about 3 or 400 yards from the finish and there was a guy loitering down the trail. He must have thought I was way too far back to worry about. Any way, the guy I had just passed tried to go by me and I big dogged it and tore ahead to get the guy up the trail. He heard an elephant panting and tugging at his big gear and turned just in time to challenge me. It must have looked kind of ridiculous to the 10 or so spectators who saw me charging for 5th but this dude was game and he was not going to just let me nip him at the line. He got out of his saddle and we did a real sprint for the line. I came out from his slipstream at exactly the precise time and dug deep. I had been at redline for about 200 yards before he stood, but I still managed to swing out and pull even. We both shoved our bikes at the line…it was very close. He got me by 4 one hundredths of a second. I saw that he barely got me…timing chips were the proof. It really was my highlight of the weekend. I was slow and depressed, but I still had a killer instinct. Everybody that beat me that day earned it, I still will never let anybody get a freebie. Never. Even though I really and I mean really sucked it was still fun to pretend. Race three was a straight up XC race. Two laps at Tranquility on Sunday afternoon. This was an epic fail from every angle. I felt horrible, the bike was having trouble, and it was 97 degrees out. I did one lap as the front crank became useless and was actually ghost shifting because it was detaching from the bottom bracket. The front fork was bottoming out even though it was locked out. I may have been able to nurse it for two laps but I was going so slow it seemed pointless. So I bailed and waited to see Qman decimate the under 10 race. He was stoic at the start, but I had given him instructions that as an official Jackrabbit racer it was imperative that he hit the single track in first. I was ecstatic as he whipped by while buzzing the pace rider’s back tire. The pacer was about 14 and riding a 29er it was really funny. The kid had not expected someone on sixteen’s to be that fast.

He hasn’t seen Qman at top speed on his SS I guess. Any way the pace kid sped up and Q hit the single track in first. That meant that all the kids and I mean all the kids were chasing a 5 year old on a tiny bike with no gears. He hit the technical section that included a straight wall that is twice his height and a log fall that is twice the thickness of his tires. The little bugger didn’t even dab. Now the bigger kids were worried…he actually pulled away from them at this point. There was a long straight on a dirt road that connected two parts of the trail. Two nine year old boys on 26 inch bikes got past Quinn who was turning about 10,000 rpms trying to stay ahead of them. They hit the last single track section and Q maintained third right behind them.
It was freaking awesome.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Big D--awesome race report! I lol'd until I peed my pants! Big props to you for hanging in there for all 3 races. If I hadn't seen you on Skype yesterday, I would have thought you were dead from that first picture! Q rocks--I love that video! Can't wait to see what he does on a real bike!