Sunday, August 9, 2009
With the thermometer reading around 95 and the returning missouri humidity the single speed open class was off to a start that felt like diving into a hot tub. We began on a double track gravel road that narrowed into a tight single track within a few hundred feet. I was on pace and experiencing my usual early-race over-tenacity. After a quarter of a lap I was pulling up front with Justin from kansas city in close pursuit. Our first lap was pretty fast, I'd have to compare the time to the expert category but we were doing our best to haul.
My lysnkey pro29er was set up w/ 32x16 and around 30psi in the tires. I felt like the gear was a little lite in the first two laps then about perfect for the next 3.
After 1 lap, myself and Justin settled in and kept a fast pace, opening up a gap of probably a minute or two. The rest of the race was basically a suffer-fest in terms of making sure we were drinking enough water and battling the heat. Throughout the 5 laps I drank 1 full bottle of H20 the first lap, then took in a gel and later drank a full bottle of hammer heed w/ a little BCAA added in, then later another gel. That intake kept me feeling fueled and strong but I definitely didn't have enough water. I needed 2 more bottles at the pit. Justin ended up giving me a few drinks off his bottle, which was pretty bad-ass considering we were obviously at a similar level and also each competing for the win. Both of us want to ride expert next year and both are currently pretty(?)fast on the single speeds.
The pain came during the last lap, which we both wanted to ride quicker but I'm not actually sure if either of us did. I think we both knew that the win would come down to the last few hundred meters, where the unforgiving tight, yet flat single track of spanish lake opened up to a big field, that we would ride around before finishing.
We both also knew that he was running a 32x18....which may (or may not, I don't really know) have given me an advantage for that last section. The last drive to the line was a good minute of all-out-efffort and rather quickly, the pain came into the legs as I tried to keep my motion smooth and continuous. At the line, I was just ahead...enough to take away my first win in a MWFTS event this year. Exciting, but also completely and utterly exhausting given the heat.
As I had said in the last post, I was riding today with Susan Nelson in mind; so I was glad to just be able to ride hard and give it my all.