Sunday, June 10, 2012

Missouri state championship a race turns into a bike ride

Well let's just say it didn't go exactly as planned in any shape or form leading up to or during the race.

Going into the race I couldn't decide hard tail or the suspension ride. Garet said cracker race your Epic, there are rocks everywhere. So Friday night with his convincing argument "Rocks cracker" I started to prepare the Epic which I hadn't ridden since Sylammo. The cleaning process started, who wants to ride a dirty not me. So anyways I popped the rear wheel, chain and cranks off. It didn't take long and my mood changes with what appears to be a 1" crack inside the chain stay drive side "picture below". So that change my mind pretty quick on what I would now be riding.

My gears changed to getting the hard tail tuned and ready to roll. I popped the back wheel off it and my rear derailer falls off. I'm thinking really you got to be serious i'm down 2 bikes in 15 minutes. The good thing is it appears to be a simple fix. The Bolt head that holds the hanger on and basically broke off. So by Saturday evening the the bolt is replaced a beefy rear tire is installed and I'm ready to race.

It's Sunday morning Steve and myself are heading down to do some crushing or that's plan. We headed out for a warm up lap and to check things out and Garet was right there are rocks just about everywhere, nothing technique but just bumping along. By the finish of the warm up lap my back was already feeling it, I don't get how people can ride hard tails everywhere, the shit wrecks me. Maybe it has to do with how i've slipped a disc in my lower back a handful of times.

We head to the start line and there is a hand full of pretty fast dudes I'm sitting next too. I realize pretty quick I'll be working for this one for sure. And we are off the race started at a pretty fast pace on loose double track before it headed into the real stuff. This worked out nice because the top 4 guys popped the field before even hitting the single track. In JP Brockets case his tire popped before the single track one tire many on the day. That was is second.

Things where going good I went into the woods 3rd and stayed there for the first lap. I was maybe 15 seconds back but in a comfortable spot. My back was feeling the bouncing but I wasn't letting it slow me down, I just figured I'd deal with it later.

Probably a few minutes later I passed the guy that was in 2nd it looked like he was fixing a flat or starting too. So I put in a little dig I wanted to get back up to Dan Miller and not but a few minutes later disaster hit and the Stan's I don't seal sidewall tears was spraying everywhere. The front tire is flat and I'm retarded slow and fixing them, but today I'm on it and 3 minutes later I'm back on the bike. I think 3 guys had passed me. I hit the tire with air and did notice the tube was pushing out there the tire like a hernia. Damn it man this wasn't good one wrong bump and that would be it.

I started back up and it clicked if I don't finish the race I don't go to nationals. So I let back off the gas realizing I didn't have another tube and this set up wouldn't handle much punishment. I tried riding everything super smooth and basically stopping when I was turning. The race turned into a bike ride, a gingerly one at that.

O well that's racing I did finish 3rd in cat 1 30-39 and will be heading to nationals next month. Colorado Springs is next up.

Sunday, May 20, 2012


Man this is a real mountain bike race. I think in 50 miles I touched a little over 1 mile of gravel or road which 3/4 of that came in the opening climb separating the field out nicely. Aaron Elwell and I slotted in up front with all the previous winners which got the front row call ups. I knew I wanted to be near the front as the climb started so no one pulled away before I figured it out. I definitely was getting funny looks as I lined up on the front row. It's sure nice still being unknown. It was a neutral roll out until the hill then we where off. As the climb started I was surprised that no one really took off or I didn't think so. I was just plugging away and went in the woods in the 3rd slot. I didn't want to over do it I knew it was a long race. I told myself race the race your style and let it happen don't force it.

About a month ago Jesse and I went down a round the course it's 50 miles of continuous single track. I recorded splits at the check point to just see what I could kind of average.

So as I came to the first check point I was still in 3rd but was 6 minutes faster than my time split so I knew I was going pretty good. I felt good but I seem to have an issue cramping lately so was taking four endurolites at each check point and I had some liquid stuff between to keep them at bay.

There was a quick 25 minute loop back to that check point and the another 50 minutes or so before check point 2. During that time I think we were on the blue section of trail which is the most technical area. I pulled up to the guy that was in 2nd and asked him how far Aaron was up he said 5 minutes or so. I cruised behind him for a bit and then went by durning a climb and didn't see him again. I had been climbing strong all day. I switched bottles and grabbed some more endurolites and keep moving. My pit crew Corbin said I was with in 2 minutes from Aaron and was pulling him in.

Heading out on the 3rd leg the big climbs where ahead. I knew I just needed to manage them and not go to hard the key to this race is the last 13 mile loop. So as the climbs started so did some cramping in the legs my hopes to continue to pull Aaron is diminished and damage control was in progress. I knew there were some fast dudes behind me coming and needed to just keep from full on lock up. So my quick change of plans was to chug up the majority of the climbs and any steep step ups just pop off walk it and jump back on. The managing worked no full on lock ups and I pulled into the last check point still in 2nd. I knew I had lost some time but that's the way it goes. On longer races your racing yourself and your abilities not just other racers. You blow to pieces your done.

Well it's gut check time and as I'm leaving the check point I see Chris Renshaw coming in, the race for 2nd in my mind would be on. Did I save enough for this final leg or was I going to fall to pieces. It was serious gut check! Time to make this trail buttery smooth and do some flossing. Well I pulled through and things went as planned I cruised the the last leg and finished up 2nd. Aaron won by by 10 minutes and set a new course record at 4:18 I finished 30 seconds shy of the old record at 4:29 not that that matter much but I was happy with my finish. I'm starting to figure out the longer races that's my third one.

Another awesome finish was Jason Knight another fellow Ethonian pulled in a strong 3rd place. He passed 3 people in the last hour to capture the final podium spot. Jesse Gross in the single speed division did some crushing him self pulling in 2nd!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Post race recovery

Post race recovery in full affect thanks wifey!:)

God's country XC

Great day to race. Things started off fast with Aaron up front and about mile 1 I burped my tire so had to slow just a touch. Jp was behind me and a few minutes later said you don't looks so comfortable I replied ya the back of my bike is all squirrely. He said yes it is. We rolled the first lap together and I told him I was going stop to hit the tire with a CO. He so kindly soft pedaled a few seconds and then we took off like rockets on our second lap.

We were doing some real flossing making that trail look straight. Rolling through the finish the not so accurate chip timing was in play said a 30 min and change lap. No to bad considering no on from what I here has ever broke 30 minutes. We headed out on our final lap about a minute behind Aaron, we continued a relentless pace on catching him but we new he would have to make a mistake in order for it to happen. Has the end of the race was near Jp and I started chatting about if we one of us could of dropped each other together I don't think as we are pretty dang close when it comes down to putting the wood to the trail. It should be great year of racing for team Ethos.

O also according to Jp's Strava report it said our second lap was a 29 minutes 51 seconds which is the fastest lap recorded. Kinda cool on top of that our third lap was 30'02" second fastest lap recorded. Makes me wonder with out the minor tire issue on the first lap could of been. O well that's racing. We did pull back with in 25 seconds of Aaron.