Wednesday, September 15, 2010
As I drove, a lot of things crossed my mind. I focused on the positive and pushed back the negative.
Driving across Dupont on the gravel road was freeing, for some reason, and then the road turned up, to the top of the private mountain that held the Start/ Finish for today's stage.
I got changed and chatted with the other racers who had signed up for this challenge. We met at the start line and rolled out for a neutral warm up, 7 miles mostly downhill to the official start. In the grassy field, Todd told us to place our bikes at one end then walk back about 50yrds for a Lemond Start.
The peleton took on a pretty stiff pace pretty quickly. Patrick rolled up and asked " Whatcha got man, whatcha got?", and promptly attempted to run me off the road. I understood then that he was out for blood. You'll see what I got, soon enough...
I backed off to roll at my own pace. I knew what I had to do, and I did it. I let the people go. I was quickly surprised when I realized that I was not in last place. After things settled down though, I did not get passed. I only reeled in and passed others. We wound around some steep techy uphill trails then dumped onto a gravel road. The road tilted up, then turned into pavement, which tilted up some more. Turning onto some singletrack, we wound around the mountain until we finally hit the switchbacks of death. Very much like Kitsuma's switchbacks, only a steeper grade and grassy. I finally reached the top and crossed the line in 1hr 18mins.
Checking the results later, I found out that I was only 2 minutes off of 4th place in the Men's Open Cat. Cool.
Tomorrow, we have 40 miles and 9,000 ft of climbing, including the hike a bike up and over Black Mountain!
It's gonna be fun.
Have a great day.
Posted by My name is Stephen at 6:07 AM