Sunday, May 15, 2011

Michigan 6hr report

Got up at 4:30am and was at the soccer fields at 5:15 setting up the goals. Home by 7:30 and out the door by 8:00. I debated going since it was raining and it showed rain in Rochester, Michigan at the race venue. I didn't look good on the turnpike, (visibility was just about half a mile or less)
or south of Detroit, as a matter of fact it was poring rain most of the way until north of Detroit where it had rained but the roads where drying. Arrived at the park and proceeded to set up the pit area,

There was a 12hr race also going on that had started at 8am. i started asking the pit crews and riders from the relay teams how was the course looking and some of the locals that were racing told me it was slippery, muddy, lots of standing water. I thought to myself, I should have stayed home. After the first lap I was wondering why they were complaining about the course, for the most part it was dry with just a few muddy spots and the mud didn't even stick to the tires. They haven't been outside of Michigan to race in PA or West Virginia. I felt very comfortable flying through the single track. The Jamis 29er responded to every situation better that anything I have ever had.
The race started promptly at 2pm through a short single track section and unto the double track and the first short climb of the day where it split the group some what. I found myself going into the tight twisty single track in the top 20 at a very fast pace. I started thinking "I'm I burning to many matches, spending to many quarters" in the first lap? My legs felt a little heavy but responding anytime I needed to accelerate. The course, according to the promoter was about a 10 mile mix of very fun single track and double track with some short steep climbs mixed in between. The first lap went fast in under 50 mins. A couple of the double track sections where into a very strong head wind out in the open fields but for the most part the double track was inside the woods. There was also a few very deceiving false flats that after the 4th lap had me shifting into gears I had still not used. The 4th lap came and I knew something was brewing in my body and it kept getting worse. Every lap it was a quick stop at my tent grab another bottle swallow a bunch of pills and a gel and take off.Well, I forgot to eat solid food and my stomach was pulling every which way, went to the bathroom and nothing, tried to get back on the bike and just coulldn't get going again.  I was sitting in seventh place and had just picked up one position. I decided it was time to end it. If I would have been able to continue I don't know if I would have been able to pick up any more places but every body was hurting so I'll never know. One thing, I watered a bunch of trees having to pee twice every lap, I lost at least 5 minutes having to stop.
I feel I let myself down by not trying to go out for the 6th lap but I'lll be ready for the next race.
My Garmin says 41 miles in 3:39 but I must have hit the stop button because I did 5 laps which should have been 50 miles. In all, I had a lot of fun and can't wait to do it all over again.
Looks like rain most of the week here, so Ray, Ken and I are planning on going there next week to ride. With the weather pattern the way it is the trails are not going to dry anytime soon around here.
On a last note, I met Jason "The Soiled Chamois" formerly from PA, now a Michigan dude.
 We leap frog ourselves for most of the course, the dude is fast on the double tracks, great riding Jason. By the way, I found this race in your events section, thanks.
   Hope to see you at another race this summer.

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