Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Pisgah Stage Race 2015: Stage 1

 We arrived to Cove Creek Campground to find a swollen creek.  As far as I know, everyone made it through without any major issues.  The F-150 handled it like a champ.  I was glad that I was not driving the Honda Accord that we used to have,   I got it stuck once, down a dirt road, late at night.... oops.

After lots of rain in the forecast, we were all pleased to be seeing blue and sunshine through the holes in the clouds.  We chit chatted and got kitted up,  everyone a little nervous and excited to get rolling.  I was excited, but unsure how my under training would pan out.

Todd fired the gun and we were off.  The field spread out pretty quickly.  Joe Worsham warned that we were going to fast too soon, but I wanted to keep within sight of Dejay.  He was moving slower than I had thought he would.  Must be just getting warmed up.

Eric Crews, the one and only
 And then I was alone, for the most part.  I climbed Daniel,  got away from Joe, only to be passed by him going down the enduro section.  I'll admit, that first hour I was struggling.   The Daniel's Ridge loop is way more fun going the other direction.  Lots of hike a bike happened, and I fought with the demons in my head to get my perspective straight.

I went down the list of why I was here, and how I got started in Mountain Bike racing.  Then I headed up the gravel road,  taking a left at Gloucester Gap,  climbing some more, descending and finally a right on Butter Gap.   Then things clicked,  I started pedaling more smoothly and within my range.   I was trying to get out of reach of the guy behind me, while at the same time hoping to get a glimpse of Joe in front of me.  
I would find out later that he would get an 8 minute gap on me.

Flowing down Butter,  back out on the gravel, to the Davidson River Trail,  and NASCAR fast pit stop with Karlos and friends and I was climbing again.   I managed a steady pace, but I suffered for the hard effort in the first hour.  Oh well,   maintain to the top and don't let the guy behind me catch me.  Every switchback I gained a little ground.

My mind and body slowly remembering what racing is.  I'm thankful to be here.  This is my first race of the season.

Grinding to the top, left turn, another left on Cove Creek then spin it out, glide, spin etc all the way down.

There are a couple of new bridges and some loads of gravel that definitely made the ride more enjoyable.

No one in sight, ahead of behind,  I don't let up and cruise into the finish.  Satisfied and not quite depleted. Wound up in 6th place single speed.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

nice gams.