Monday, October 31, 2005


Stick a Fork in Me......I'm a Tree Hugger

There was frost on the ground as I pulled in to the field to park for the race. It was a chilly morning but with a clear blue sky things would warm up fast. Charles (<----) was parked right next to me. He was the first guy to tell me about the JRPS in Richmond where he did his allot of his MTB training before moving south. I'd ridden a Tour de Cure century with him early in the year. Well I'd ridden 1/2 of it with him, then he powered away.

It was great to see master mechanic Roberio there to race. In a twisted role reversal he actually asked ME for a wrench on the way to the start. Yes he DID catch and pass me on the first of his 3 laps!

I guess I was the 3rd to pre-reg 'cause I got a call-up to the first row on the start. At first I said no way man I'm not going up there, but Steve was insistent, so I went. Then I decided WTF , I'm here, I may as well start a 6 hour ride with a 1/2 mile sprint. I was still in 3rd or 4th at the logs when a guy bobbled in front of me, I hit his wheel, had to put a foot down and twisted my ankle bad. I kept up with the first 5 or so up till the left hand uphill switch back but I couldn't click in my eff'd up ankle so I had to pull over and let the WHOLE group by. The ankle bothered me for the first lap or 2 'till the endorphins kicked in.

I saw Rob motor his Monkey by me at least once in the SS class. After 3 hours I took a break to reload the Camelback. Once back on the bike my forearms and hands were cramping and I was having trouble at times getting a good grip on the bars. There was a few rooted rutty downhills that would slam me around and remind me that my shock and fork were set at minimum sensitivity, so my bike was riding more like rigid than a FS. I'd tell myself to adjust it next time I'd stop, but when I did stop I was so blinded by lactate I'd forget. Somewhere after noon I got a treat and watch (<---) Chris Eatough cruise by me on a warmup lap. Man that guy never looks like he's even breathing hard. Most of the time his mouth is actually closed. I think his muscles get oxygen directly through the pores in his skin. Later Jeremiah Bishop glides by doing his warmup thing. I also saw KDog (--->) on a warmup lap as I was doing my thing for the Sierra club - he smiles more than both of those pros.

I anxiously watched my watch to try and figure when the Pro/Experts would be coming by. My first goal in these races is not to get hurt, the second is to stay out of the way of the faster riders. They don't get much faster than CEat and JBish.

The TriPower cheering squad got there sometime after noon and it was great to hear the yells and bells while going over the jumps. By then I was way to spent to air it out but Paul wasn't. When the TeamTrek guys passed me at the end of the first lap they'd already opened up nearly a minute gap in their field. Yes - it wasn't THAT hard to resist the fleeting urge to hop on their wheel! My last lap was pure survival mode - grunt up the hills, try to get my HR down, a little more tree love, then it's over. I'd never been THAT anaerobic for that long in my life. Better than a DNF last year and next year will be better still!

JB has a race report on his blog.

Kudos and much respect to all that raced. It was a great day on a fun tough course. Liz was all business and tough as nails. After breaking her finger she continued on, only to hurt her shoulder in another fall.

Many more photos here, and a TriPower gallery here.

We had a tasty team picnic at Pierce's BBQ before heading home.


The other (much slower and older) JB

I raced against Bishop in Davis this year and Eatough at the 101. They are a freking joy to watch. Sounds like a cool race. Do you all have an "off season" down there? HA! Later.
Man you should try to come down for this one next year! drive down Friday night, pre-ride Saturday, Race Sunday drive home. You have a place to stay don'ear!
Hey, don't let Rob see that pic with you in Dirt Rag jersey!
lol - I think I'll have to go up to the PUNK BIKE DIRT RAG ENDURO and burn it on a stick! Or maybe hold it hostage in return for a good article on the SSWC. You'd think they could do a decent writeup on their own event!
Virginia sems to have sweet race scene.
Hope to come down for a few next year.
Lots of 'Rag hostillities... eesh. I ride right by
Rag HQ on one of my road rides. I'll tell them you all
said hi. HA.
Its just hard to understand how they could sponsor the SSWC and only write a tiny lil' slightly scathing aritickle about it. Unless, maybe, they were just a bit too, um, incoherant to remember much?
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