Monday, April 12, 2010

Sylvan Stampede

I haven't updated my blog for ages. I've been busy, Tom's been unemployed until recently -- now, his group has started working for a new firm but are not getting paid yet. Who really wants to hear me complain about my lack of finances?
So, when Rachael posted she wanted to sell her 29er, Tom and I were torn. Then, I rode it and immediately felt like a better rider. I finished doing our taxes, realized we'd get a decent return and bought it. Yea!

Of course, I had to try out the bike ASAP and decided to race the Sylvan Stampede. Christopher had also really been bugging us for a trip so we left Saturday afternoon after I was done co-teaching a bike ed. class. We got there about 6 p.m. and I was able to get in two laps. The trails there are awesome. I knew that, even if the race went horribly for me, I would still have fun riding those trails.

We got there early on Sunday so we could find a place to park the RV and I was able to spin out the legs doing an easy lap before the novice race started. I warmed up and then we waited around for the kids' race. Christopher had a fun time and we were so happy they had a fun little course mapped out for them.

There were a lot of girls lined up for the Women's Open and we were starting before the guys. I wasn't sure what I thought of starting before the guys. I figured the Women's Open should be good for me. I always get my butt kicked in Expert but am not really "sport" either. I ended up 9th out of 25 girls. I wasn't sure if I could hold off Liz Baungart. I had never beat her in a MTB race and had beat her once at CX. Last lap, I was passed by a guy who was then really laid back about passing a slow sport guy so the three of us were kind of just riding along with me thinking girls were catching up on me as Tom was yelling a girl was right up ahead. I was just under 30 seconds behind that girl but did keep Liz behind me -- by 8 seconds. Luckily, I didn't know she was that close 'til they put the results up.

It was awesome although I felt like I was going to die. Anne and Roger, from CAMBr, were course marshalls and it was cool to hear them cheer for me each time I went by. Paul and Jennifer from Half Acre were also happy to have them as a Half Acre cheering section. There were open stretches that I would redline myself on trying to keep from being passed by the faster girls and I actually ended up with an average heart rate of 187.

The 29er is so fricking cool. Although, as the race went on and my thinking ability diminished, I kept shifting the wrong way with the grip shifter and had issues shifting when my hand was sweaty and all of me was tired. Once Rachael gets back from AZ though, she is going to change it to a trigger shifter. = ) The 1x9 was good and kept me from going into too easy of a gear on the short climbs.

Our plan is now to go to quite a few of the WORS races for me to get in a long ride on Saturday and have Tom and Christopher race as well as hitting quite a few of the IL series for Christopher and I to race. = )