This season of racing has generally been good yet unsatisfying in an odd way. I feel like for the effort I have put into riding over the last few months I am riding strong and feeling good. Overall though it has been a season of disappointments due to my unreasonably high expectations for myself. I will give you a rundown:
-Slobberknocker/Memphis Velo Omnium Weekend - I didn't race because I didn't feel like I was fast. I had this pride thing going where I felt like I needed to be in a better place before I went and raced. I was hoping to have a "dafuq did he come from" reaction after my first race of the season. I ended up heckling at the Velo race which must have been awkward to see from the racer side.
-Rouge Roubaix - I did great, I had a great race, I did way better than I expected and it really got me gassed up to go race and do well. Andrea of Brickhouse was hit by a car. It puts a black cloud around that race for me because it is impossible for me to feel super pumped looking back at the race when I have to think of being told my friend was hit by a car as soon as I crossed the line.
-Spa City 6 Hour - this was the weekend after Rouge. I decided to go race and get some long mountain bike time in. I drove over the night before and slept in a hammock under the stars at the venue. I was riding the rigid geared bike. First lap of the day I turned a smoking ass lap,was feeling strong. I had the Rouge Roubaix juices flowing through me. I knew I could keep turning these fast laps and probably do pretty well for my age group. I was feeling it. Then I flatted on lap 5. My co2 didn't work, my pump was in the pit, I had to take outside assistance. Rather than cheating I rode the road back, was given permission to continue racing after pitting but restarting lap 5. So it sucked a lot of ass. That was really discouraging. I knew I was doing ok. I knew it was going great. But damn-it-all-to-hell I had left my pump at the pit. Upon later inspection my co2 head is actually not compatible with Big Air 40g cartridges. There was a lip that hit the canister that prevented it from screwing on all the way, which kept it from piercing the canister enough to actually get air out. Fuck, fuck, fuck.
-Ouachita Challenge - I raced really hard, the course isn't really a single speed friendly course. I don't want to hear that crap of everyone is on single speed that is racing one another. People get shady. I know some people can spin faster than me, but to go with lead geared men after a few miles of gently rolling gravel. . . is a tough one to swallow. I personally went as hard as possible down the gravel and it ended up with me going into the woods behind a BUNCH of slow people. Granny gear at mile 6 slow. It wrecked me. Also, that race is really hard. To go full bore and get handled is a rough one. I was happy with how I did for the first time there and everything, but I wanted to be faster.
By this time everyone should be seeing a theme of "I did ok but still beat myself up afterwards".....
-Syllamo's Revenge - I don't think I even wrote a post for that race. Again, the feeling of intense pride of everything working well immediately coupled with the feeling of being a complete and total fucking failure. I had a perfect race. I smashed my course PR by a lot, on a hands down slower and much harder course based on trail conditions. I went up the first climb harder-dan-a-motherfucka and went into the woods in 10-12th place. Overall. I rode hard all day. I didn't flat, I didn't wreck, I didn't make a single wrong turn. I was fast enough to finish 12th overall on my single speed. It just happened that was only good enough for 5th in single speed. I had a year long battle of really wanting a rock (the trophies at this race are rocks engraved just like a tombstone would be. Much cooler than it sounds. It is a unique and tough trophy just like the race). And I didn't succeed. I cried a little, tiny bit at that one. Seriously, when I looked at the results and saw that I was 5th single speed I got teary eyed, said my goodbyes to everyone I knew there, and had to leave. I couldn't stick around. I had put so much into this race and just ended up not being fast enough. If I had signed up age group that day I would have been 2nd. That is a tough one. Hindsight is 20/20 and shit.
-Fast forward and I didn't really race again until the state champ race, it was a tough one. It has been an entire month since then and I shuttled a truck to Colorado again. This time I found some cool stuff along the way, made some plans that opened up a few really cool opportunities, and really got excited.
Since the state championship race I have gotten a bunch of great parts for my Specialized Carve which allows me to run it geared as XTR 1x10 with a Reba Suspension fork, Enve AM 29 Wheels, and a Stages Power Meter. It is a really cool bike. I haven't ridden it a ton but I will be soon.
Below I am going to just dump some photos of what have been going on over the last while.
|Blue skies and clouds in. . .ARKANSAS|
|Different strokes for different folks. Fun isn't universal.|
|I tried to win a state jersey|
|Shorts were chafing so I rolled em up|
|Shredded after a century ride.|
|I rode a bunch of bikes.|
|See, I was in CO|