Saturday, March 16, 2013

Smokey and the Bandit Short Track

The 2013 season is officially under way I guess. This morning I did the eeney meeney miney moe and hoped things would still stay frozen enough to bring out my race bike. So I threw the Lynskey on the car and headed over to High Bridge NJ for the short track race. The trails were good. Tougher than I expected to see but they were tight...really tight. Passing was going to be an art on this course. The start had a little to be desired as it was 40 of your closest friends sprinting for 50 yards and then trying to nail a right hand turn into singletrack. It turns out it wasn't that pretty.

At the start, one of the racers to my left decided to sprint sideways and run into some of the other racers almost causing a pileup without making very few revolutions of the cranks - so this is how it's gonna go... I gave way to avoid crashing at got shoved pretty far back. I would say somewhere around 15th spot or so. So I'm sitting in line and being patient and waiting for my chance to pass as is everyone else. A few laps go on and there's no real way to pass besides asking the guy in front to let you by. Some do some don't. And the the ones that don't - I have no idea why they don't. This isn't the nationals and there's no paycheck for 11th place. So anyway it's all a game of mechanicals and mistakes at this point. I get through a group of 4 or 5 that were holding me back and then it opens up a bit. Of course by this time the top guys are gone. So now it was a time trial to get back to the front. I opened it up and just rode steady. Picking off a few here and there I heard I was in 7th...ok. I knew there were more ahead of me but apparently a few had flatted or crashed. In 7th I kept on my current pace and just tracked down the next guy...6th. Then 5th...then 4th. And that's where the time ran out.

After 45 minutes of hard racing on a sweet piece of singletrack I ended up with a nice 4th place. I'll take that. My lack of consistency this winter didn't make itself as apparent as I thought it would. I did some hard workouts on Wednesday and Thursday as well thinking it might not be good for the weekend but whatever. It turned out ok. I just wish the traffic opened up sooner so I could have the advantage of riding clean with the faster guys. There's always next time.

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