(Thanks to Eric Eiseman for the great photo!)
I decided to race Matthiessen on Sunday. I was a little apprehensive as life has still been pretty hectic and I have not really been training -- riding, yes; but, not really training. There ended up being only three expert girls. Myself, Betsy, who is incredibly fast, and Liz, who I went back and forth with quite a bit last year. The course was technical enough that I thought I could keep ahead of Liz and figured there was no way I'd keep any where near Betsy. We started and I actually was ahead of both of them into the trail. It was a short grass route around trees before the trail but, Liz a good starter and Besty is fast, so I was kind of proud of myself to be the first girl into the singletrack. I gunned it as much as I could and figured Besty would soon pass me. But, holy crap! We were at the end of the second (of four) laps before she passed me on the horrible climb. I actually led the race -- in front of Besty -- for almost half the race. And, I finished less than two minutes behind her. Less than two minutes!!! Full disclosure -- she is on antibiotics after finding out she has had Lyme disease for several years but I'll still take it as a victory. = )
The course was super fun and I really felt like I was riding well for most of it. (I still have a tendancy to dab when someone is right behind me.) My quads are not used to hills like the one at the end of the lap and I'm sure preriding that morning did not help. Several times my quads started cramping up and I did have to walk parts of the hill every time but the first lap. But, I walked only the small muddy section on the last lap and rode the rest.
The course, like I said before, was extremely fun to ride and had rocks, roots, small logs, swoopy turns, etc. They gave everyone socks and I won a cool glass and $60 for taking second place. Very cool.
We made a little trip out of it and camped the RV at Starved Rock on Saturday. Christopher liked playing at the campground's park and at the race with the other kids. He loves trips and thought the worst part about this one was that the trip was too short, since we left home on Saturday afternoon and were home by early Sunday evening. Tom, on the other hand, was miserable the entire time and just in a foul mood -- even though he had just gotten his first pay check from the new job shortly before we left. It's entirely possible Christopher & I may take the next trip with just the two of us. That will be for the Black Partridge race, which we will likely leave for after Christopher's graduation from preschool on that Saturday morning. I can't believe my little guy is turning into such a big boy.