Monday, December 1, 2008

End of the Drought

Pay-Dirt!!! I woke early Sunday morning to at least a couple of inches of fresh snow, and yes it did feel exactly like coming downstairs on Christmas morning to find _______( fill in the blank of your most treasured gift ever )under the tree. Nothing was going to stop me today. Jim craftily slid his pristine vintage Honda through the intersection at the base of the Fillmore hill (remember the days before ABS ) and pulled into our driveway at 7am. We both acknowledged that we we were about to do was not the smartest idea but it was game-on. I-25 headed North was a bit of a mess but few cars on the road and being cautious was the order of the day.

The driving conditions erased any opportunity to pre-ride or warm all; race time was at 9:25, we arrived at 8:50. We were headed to registration and bumped into Matt O and Greg K. Matt seemed slightly stunned that a couple of knuckleheads who stand zero chance of standing on the podium that day would risk the drive up to race...too late, we've arrived. A quick sign up in a deluxe camper trailer, run back to the car with the motor running and heat on full blast and pin on the number. I jumped onto the course and rode for about 200 meters before quickly realizing that it had turned into an ice skating rink. There was approximately a 10" wide track that had been packed down pretty well by riders and because the temps were hovering just above the freezing mark had turned rock hard and slick as....well, ice.

Dubbing around on the track caused me to pull up to the line late so I picked a spot at the very back ( where I should be ) and the whistle went off about 30 seconds later. Within a matter of a minute and barely onto the track our race resembled a strung out line of bowling pins at the end of the lane. Riders were everywhere, I've never seen so many guys loose traction and stack it so quickly. I ventured way off track and into the deep stuff on the sides a few times just to get by the chaos, some sections were so difficult to regain momentum that I just shouldered my bike and ran a good portion of the course. By laps 2 and 3, I had settled in and figured out my lines, I was motoring well and picking off riders.

I also couldn't wipe the smile off my face. I relish conditions where fitness and power must take a back seat to handling skills and I felt super good on the bike. Seemed as though a large group of spectators had arrived en-mass equipped with bells, horns and lungs which added to the hilarity and absurdity of the conditions. I had absolute confidence in the bikes ability to stay put as long as I committed to my lines. I never stacked and rolled through in 12 position. I could have gone for at least a few more laps, perhaps conditions were improving but I knew I was picking up speed on every lap. Thanks to the great crew that put on the Red Rocks series. I was a little bummed that the old Morrison elementary school venue was left off the schedule but Bear Creek park is a beautiful spot and makes for a great race venue.

State Finals on Sun. see you there
Thanks for reading

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