the morning of the race was a brisk 41 degrees, hella wind and moist conditions...always great to have adverse conditions to help out with the pain and suffering of a race. we ate breakfast at Wesson's mom's house...bagels and eggs...to fuel the system. since we were about 30 minutes from the race and Wesson was racing his ss, his start time was 2hrs before ours...ouch for everybody...we had to wait for him to finish then he had to wait for us to finish...made for a long day!!!
the course was changed some from the last few years...the start had us riding out on to a field with a nice hill to break it up the group but the catch for today was the 25+mph headwind that was blasting straight into our face! so anyway...i tried to stay out of the wind but keep good positioning...i think i was about 7th going into the woods...i passed several folks in the first few miles then settled into a nice rhythm...about 20 seconds behind the leaders and with one guy in tow. things stayed just like this for the remainder of lap one...the second lap was just about the same...only i got towed around the 2nd lap, until dude got a little tired and i took over the lead...i tried to bridge up to the leaders over the last couple miles of the second lap...but...i think i burned up a few too many matches while trying to bridge up...the section of the trail that i was trying this move on was a open and flat section and a large section was in a field that the dreaded wind was just killing me...i could feel the power dropping...once we went into the woods just before the transition i knew i was in trouble...as we were going through the start/finish line, 2 fellas caught me. I knew i had to stick to their wheels to have a chance...BUT...again, the wind was zapping my power...i stuck to them up the hill but lost contact going back into the woods for the last time. I watched them slowly pull away...nothing i could do by try and maintain! And even that wasn't happening...the heart rate was way low...hovering around 165bpm...normal race pace for me is 174...!!! towards the end of the lap, i started getting passed...alot...and by the time i dragged my body across the finish line, i had dropped 4 positions on the last lap...which landed me 7th place about 6.5 min back off the leader.
the guys who i rode with on laps 1 and 2 finished 2nd and 4th on the day...so for me to look at the race from an optimistic standpoint...had i only dropped a couple minutes on the 3rd lap, top 5 was very doable! i truly believe i'm stronger than what the placement shows...i didn't eat enough of the right stuff leading up to the weekend, didn't drink enough liquids in the few days leading up to the weekend, and my sleep was lame! i got to regroup this week, rest some, train some, eat and drink a bunch, and get some good sleep...then try and hammer this weekends race...Knobscorcher!!!