It’s not quite cyclocross season for me yet. That may seem a bit odd since I’ve now done 2 cyclocross races this year, but it’s easy: I still have a mountain bike race this weekend. It was my goal this year to rock Burnin and do well at BT Epic. Riding 12 hours or even for 5 to 7 hours on a mountain bike in many ways is different than riding ‘cross for less than a hour.
After I finished Burnin, I did feel … ahem … burned out. I can’t figure out if it was a product of how much distance I covered that day, how much training went to get a good result there, or just feeling ready for a break. Bikes were the last thing I wanted to think about for a few days. Conversations in my head said, “Let’s take this weekend off. No racing.”
I finally grabbed my ‘cross bike to ride to work a couple days and even got in a little bit of practice on it. I noticed that the upcoming races were at one my favorite venues from last year: Queeny Park. Temptations. After working on trail and riding my singlespeed on Saturday, I opted just to race on Sunday.
The course didn’t run through the woods like last year and so I was a bit bummed about that since when you add narrow tree line sections I can usually put the hurt on some guys who aren’t use to it. The course was actually a lot of fun. I think the crew learned some from putting on Gateway Cross cup. You had fast sections, you had climbs, you had a few handling sections. I think what made this course was two run ups and some a few areas that would rattle your bones off.
I wasn’t feel like gunning for it, so I started mid pack. For the first few laps I was feeling good. I was picking off some people and was able to drop people here or there. I wasn’t doing everything “right”, but was getting some good speed at things I’m good at.
This was all fine until “halfway” through the race I looked at the lap cards and it said something to the effect of 5 laps left. 5 laps! I couldn’t keep at this for much longer. I wanted to let off the gas a bit. There was a group chasing me at this point and I thought maybe if I just took effort down from 10 to 9, maybe I could ride with this and recoup. A few people came by and I tried to stick with it. By the end of the race, the bumps and the previous day’s work day were wrecking my back. That was some of the most difficult 48 minutes of racing in a long time.
See you in a few weeks Bubba races, I still got 56 miles of dirt to ride!