Sunday, October 22, 2006

Race 2 at GGTOC

Nutty weekend up here in the Valley, can't wait to see if A1 has any stories about the two huge tents he had up on Friday night. Winds gusts over 60mph and a huge tent (something like 60x40 or something like that) just can't be good. Needless to say everytime I drove by his house this weekend his truck and trailer were gone, hmmm.

I took Saturday off from the bike, not cuz I wanted to but I had to finish the Ghetto Cross and also get the Kona ready for sale (more on that in a second). Plus we went down to K's folks house so it didn't leave anytime for any riding.

The Ghetto Cross came out great, I'm already thinking of how we could improve it, my first thought is to try and find a non-suspension corrected fork, It would lower the front end by a couple inches and in effect increase the headtube and seat tube angles, giving the handling a bit more snap- we'll have to see how that plays out!

The Kona came out great, finally got it all back together on Sunday morning just seconds before we left. I have to say now that it's all clean and the Spynergy's are mounted up with CX rubber it looks great and I'm not as anxious to get ride of it, which was good- cuz the guy who wanted to buy it had hurt his back and couldn't make the race- so now we'll have to see what I finally descide to do!

We rolled out of the house at 8am, Mount Washington had snow and it was in the lower 30's. Here's a shot of the mountain from this morning (MWWO cam pic):

We got up into Pinkham and there was snow on the ground, my skier senses started to tingle! We pulled into GGTOC and got the kids and bikes unloads, K got her number and went out to warm up. She came back in and realized how hard cross can be. See K is a runner, she used to be a biker but hasn't really ridden her bike much since we've had kids. I'm gonna guess that in the past year she's gotten as many miles as I get on a good day of training with JJ. Needless to say she had a number and was going to race. The beginner field was pretty good sized (by GGTOC standards) and they headed out for a good race. Sean Doherty (all of age 11) had won the early race last week and was anxious to do it again, he chased from the start to catch Steven Godby (who was on a super sweet carbon bike with carbon wheels- I'm guessing getting passed by an 11 year old on a borrowed mt bike didn't do much for his ego!) Needless to say Sean went to the front and stayed there. K did a good ride to place second in the womens division behind another first time crosser- Sandra Iacozili. Sandra's husband Carl is one of the owners of the Red Jersey in town.

K did a good ride but realized how hard, but how fun cross can be- looks like she's ready for next week!

The intermediate/elite race lined up at 11am, temps had moved up to about 40. I opted to rock the Surly SS again and quickly found myself working with a group of about five off the back after the first downhill. I did, however, make a positive improvement over last week where after the first set of barriers I would run to the top of the rise before remounting. I was surprised how much ground I would gain even over the guys who had geared down for that grade. It's slight but it's just tough to get rolling.

Pretty soon the groups had been set and I had Dan (Sean's dad) on my wheel for a lap or two. I was just about to suggest he take a turn in the wind when he put in an effort and dropped me in about 100 yards. So much for my shot at getting my nose out of the wind! Oh well. From that point on I wanted to stay ahead of Marc and a couple of other guys that were behind me, and try to stay on the lead lap. On lap 6 of 8 I started to have doubts that I would stay on the lead lap as at the two spots where there is two way traffic I saw the leader and he was gaining fast. Then on lap 7 I knew he was behind me and saw him catch Marc and the guy with him. I half was ready to let him catch me so that I could just finish, but then I realized that he would catch me right in the "stadium" where everyone was cheering if I did that- so I poured it on and basically sprinted the last kilometer to the start finish line- he got to within 50 meters but I went hard to hit the line to make sure I got out for my 8th lap. I was rather proud of myself until I realized I had really hit my limit to not get lapped and still had a lap to go. Of course I also realized that the guys that had been behind me had finished a lap down so no one was going to catch me. Put it in cruise and just get it done.

I ended up third in my group (intermediate) which made me happy. Now the question comes up- do I go with the Kona next week now that it's all decked out again? See what happens if I run a geared rig- can I stay with anyone that has been dropping me. Hmmmmmm we'll have to think on that one this week.

I'm hoping next week to see at least one other TWAF jersey out on course- hint, hint.....


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