So far this race season

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Re: So far this race season

Postby Fenlason » Sun Sep 21, 2014 7:00 pm

We had the 12 Hours of Bradbury this past weekend.. and once again had a blast. While we did race hard and try to do our best.. we were very out classed. It seems as if the 4 person co-ed and the 3 person male teams were the biggest and strongest classes this year. We ended up 5th out of 8 teams, yet our effort would have earned us the podium in quite a few of the other categories. For the most part we had a pretty darn good race..while having a great time. :D

This particular course is fairly brutal. I have only raced maybe one tougher course, but that race is VERY short.. so overall it is much easier than this one. This race is rather rooty and rocky. It is challenging, but all of it is quite rideable by me… but for a long race.. all the roots do quite a bit of punishing. I was talking to a friend before the race.. his first time on this course.. and he was talking about how much he loved the speed and efficiency of a hard tail. I told him it was this race, that finally convinced me, that I needed a full suspension race bike. He said that maybe in 10 years, when he turns 45, he might find the need. I knew he was younger than me, but that much younger :o [I will be 58 in a couple of weeks]

Well half way through the race.. [and he was racing it as a 2 person team.. not solo] he was pretty trashed.. and had changed his mind already. :lol: :roll:

Before the race we had made out our schedule.. the order that we would ride. With Dick and I doing more of the laps [oddly the 2 oldest riders] Once there.. they started talking about changing it… it went through various permutations.. before settling on Dave taking the first lap. He isn't as fit as Dick and I, but was ok with the congested traffic that there would be at the start. A place where Dick and my fitness wouldn't be utilized as well, so we were being saved where we could go faster. So Dave was to take lead, Alane [newer to mountain biking, and a little over her head on this course] [and coming down with a cold] next. Then I would head out 3rd, and do 2 laps back to back, vs Dave and Alane doing one. Then,Dick would follow me, also doing 2 laps. We ended up repeating the same schedule, and Dave was going to go out for a 13th lap if we finished the 12th before the cut off time. It was going to be close making that cut off time, but we hoped to make it. Part way through Dick approached me, to see if I was up to take the 13th. Dave had been pushing it for his capabilities, and thought it might be best if I did the lap. I wasn't sure what I would have in the tank [ for a fast lap] but I was more than willing to give it a try. We did learn that if we made the cut off to start the 13th lap, we had no time limit to make it back.

Fairly early on in, on my first lap.. on a tightish single track section, there is a nice pile of rocks one needs to get over. A couple years ago, we had a hard time getting through it. We learned that you just had to aim for the big rock in the middle and roll over it pretty fast. There is no way to thread your way through them. It is open enough so that we originally kept trying to wind our way through at first.. and it really didn't work.. so we discovered you just aim for the big rock and over you go. Wellll there is a bigger rock on the right hand side of THE rock.. and it is the first rock you see as you approach the "pile" In my mind I had remembered to just aim for the big rock and go for it…
NOT THAT BIG ROCK you dummy!! I didn't crash.. but bobbled a little bit. Not a great way to start, from a confidence point of view. I did recover from that and had an ok lap. There is some easier sections that I had hoped to fly on, but I found my pulse too high at times, and had to sometimes use these areas to somewhat rest.

I tried not to think about the 2 laps back to back.. and tried to push pretty hard on the first lap. I ended up doing pretty good, and my second lap was only slightly slower than the first. There is enough traffic on this course.. that traffic differences lap to lap, could make some difference.

There were times the traffic helped me. Having rabbits to chase, was good. Or getting passed and then trying to stay with the faster person also helped. I did at times have people that had me pass them, that I wasn't sure I was ready to pass. It had been work to catch them.. and once head of them, I was worried about being in their way.. so I rode hard to get a gap. There were times I had that person after person. :sweaty: There were places I might have lost a little time, trying to move out of faster riders way, and occasionally got stuck behind slower people.. for a little bit.

Now a days I seem to have a hard time doing short hard fast rides /races. I do better on the longer stuff. Some of that has to do with age [one's upper pulse rate drops with age] and some of it is because of my training…. and some of it might be just my what my body [and mind] is better at?? I have tried this season to do more interval work, to help with that. Sometimes my endurance racing has sort of felt like trying to outlast an opponent, and there wasn't as great a feeling of speed to it. It was nice and fun doing some cranking.

My first 4 laps were fairly consistent, time wise, I didn't seem to be slowing down as the laps went on. Actually my 3rd lap was my fastest. We did make the cut off time.. and I was able to head out for Lap 13. This final lap was a little slower. It was my only fully dark lap.. on such a tough course that had to have slowed me some. I did have a few little "problems". I had a light pop off it's mount, so I had to stop and fix that. I did have a tire get low. It felt a little soft.. but I kept riding, and then it started rolling in the turns. This caused me some significant handling problems at times. I did finally stop to fix it. I didn't see any obvious leaks, so I just inflated it with my Co2 kit, and beingworried about a slow leak somewhere I put the whole thing in, and ended up with an overly inflated tire [for the course conditions] I had no traction.. and the tire was bouncing all over the place. The ride from there wasn't exactly pretty, but I survived it. I was pretty sure we were out of contention.. so I did stop to pee, and I had a guy stop me wanting to borrow one of my lights. With all this… I was only about 7 minutes slower than my daytime laps.

I think we were all pleased with our performances and as I said.. had fun. :D :twisted:

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

We don't stop playing because we grow old. We grow old because we stop playing.
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Re: So far this race season

Postby Alan Wood » Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:05 am

You had fun and that is what matters when you are doing thing! Would have been better if you had won but what the heck your keeping fit and having fun doing so! :thumbsup:
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