(Photos courtesy of Amy)
Woodstock was fun. It would have been a great course for me if it was more condensed. At 2 miles, it still had lots of flat power sections. Unfortunately, power is what I'm lacking. Still, I was pretty happy with my race. I stood on all the climbs and kept it in my big ring.
On Thanksgiving, I rode with Leah in the morning at Palos. My Gary Fisher is getting repainted to make it pretty again so I had to go with my old Santa Cruz hardtail. A lot of logs are gone on Out & Back and Turf 1. It was fun but depressing that all the logs keep disappearing.
Christopher got to play with a little three-year-old named Abby at my cousin's. It was really cute. I've decided he has a thing for girls named Abby since he also has a crush on the Sesame Street character Abby Cadabby.
Jingle Cross Day 1
First -- Tom is famous. He is on the beginning of this clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUwYOvPayzM
It also gives a feel for the course. Tom did the Cat. 4 race. I did the Women's 2/3 and the Women's 35+. I got about a 20 min. warm-up (Tom's race was immediately before mine). There were only 10 of us. I was 9th for a good part of the race and got passed by Heather Curnitt at the end of the last lap. I thought we had another lap to go and should have sprinted once I got ahead of her after the logs -- I rode them, she dismounted and ran them. But, Heather is faster than me and it is quite unlikely I would have held her off.
I was 8th out of 10 in the Women's 35+. I slid out on a section in the first lap. I had been riding it fine in the first race but the 35+ men apparently tore it up more their first time through. My chain fell off and by the time I got back on the bike I was dead last. So, I was happy I passed a few girls, wished I would have been able to pass a few more.
Our generator died at about 4:30 in the morning after running out of LP gas. Tom was then up and moving around the RV -- keeping me up as well. I was pretty tired and Christopher let me get a four-minute warm-up. I was so not looking forward to the 2/3 race. I had prerode the course the night before and it had some climbs that were going to be painful by the end of the second race. I had a great start for the first race but just did not have any power. I had put toe spikes in my winter shoes hoping it would help me climb. Instead, I just couldn't clip back in. There was this nasty downhill that I knew I could ride but I kept spending so much time to clip in, I wasn't paying enough attention and would immediately slide out.
For the Women's 35+, I switched shoes -- in addition to bikes, tights and gloves. I'm sure the disc brakes helped, but the switching of shoes was definitely a wise move as I could clip in much easier. I rode down the hill both laps getting huge cheers both times. I gave a little whoop of my own each time after I knew I wasn't going to careen into the building at the bottom of it.
I felt much better this race. I was 7th out of 9 and was right behind sixth place -- literally, right behind her. If there was another lap, I know I would've beaten her as she was really bad on the technical stuff. I would've did better if I was better at hiking up muddy steep inclines. I had a great start but was at dead last trying to get up that stinkin' thing. Still, I was happy with my race. It was amazing the huge difference in my attitude during the two races. I couldn't wait for the first to be over and was wishing to do another lap for the second.
The one thing I noticed from the two races on Sunday is the pros/cons of my two bikes. Riding the Schwinn, I just kept thinking how freaking heavy it was as I was lifting it over the barriers. But, I had no toe-overlap. As the season has progressed, I've had more and more problems with toe-overlap with my Trek. I didn't realize how much it was affecting my riding until Sunday -- which totally sucks. I'm probably going to buy a different frame and switch everything over. A girl who did the Wisconsin series and is about my size has a Redline Conquest. I think her name is Meghan Korol. I need to track her down to see if she'll let me ride her bike before I order a frame. I also am not sure if I want to go with disc brakes or not. After I switched the brakes, I haven't had a problem really with the brakes and it would limit my options if disc brakes is a requirement. But, I do like disc brakes. Opinions are definitely welcomed on this topic as well as help in contacting Meghan.
Upcoming Races = )
This weekend is, of course, the state championships. I'm hoping to do better than last year. It was my first Illinois race as a 3 and it went so incredibly bad.
Tom is taking off work next week so we can go to Nationals. I am so, so excited! I'm going to race the Cat. B and the Women's 35-39. Tom is going to do the Men's B 30-39. I can't wait! = )