W@W 2

I didn't know how this race was going to go, but I went out and raced it anyway. I did a good warm up going to Accotink and back. The weather was really really humid, so I was sweating really bad even before the race started. This week they called us up to the line based on last week's performance. Well I was in the second row,and we started off. I had a good starting position, really too good of a position. The first lap went ok I was behind Roger again, so I thought that boded well, I was wrong :-( At one point Roger was slowing down, and then he let me pass so he could help out a turtle on the trail. I guess he gets the good Samaritan award. After the first lap I was cooked! I guess the 12 hours of Cranky Monkey caught up to me. I should not have pushed so hard that first lap, cause my second lap was terrible. Everybody complains of having to pass people well I didn't pass one person in my class! I did two laps by myself, I mean no one passed me and I passed no one. That was nice, I felt good my last lap in riding the course but my lap time will show that I was going a lot slower. Bruce who watching the race even said I was visibly slower this week. The nice thing is I seem to know enough people now that I actually heard people cheering for me:-) The wakefield course is not for me I need some long sustained efforts not just carving through trails, I guess I will keep racing it for practice for the cross events in the fall.


12 Hours of Cranky Monkey

This race was an example of why people mountain bike race, and especially at the relay events. The team had good energy with people helping out one another, and making sure people were eating and drinking, when their stomachs did not want to. When you have a team atmosphere things like a broken chain, a flat don’t seem as bad when your teammates boost your spirits.
This race was like Lodi but during the day, with the vibe being great, all the local teams were out contesting the race. The course suited me in that it was a slow course. There were some fast sections, but most of it had really tight turns that you could not carve, you had to slow down. There was also a fair amount of climbing which usually helps me.
I did this race with Kent, and MattyD who are two really good mountain bikers, I was hoping to help the team and not hinder it. Their lap times at Big Bear were faster than mine, sometimes 5-10 minutes faster, so I wasn't sure if I would be helping my team in this race. It was decided that I would go last in our rotation, in the eventuality that I might not have to do an extra lap. MattyD started us off and he did a great job going through traffic, and then Kent went out and did a :47 lap time! This gave us the lead that we would never give up. I was able to do lap times that were the same avg. as my teammates with a 49:30 as my fastest. By the third lap, I started to feel the power in my legs going, so I was happy I only did 4 laps. My Achilles tendon was hurting me still from Big Bear, but after the first lap and some Ibuprofen It didn't really bother me again. The only other issue I had was that I fell the last lap. The fall was because I was tired and I washed out in a corner. The ground felt like asphalt and the resulting bruise on my hip shows that it was hard. That didn't really bother my during the race, but I wasn't been able to sleep on that side of my body for a week.
This was a great race, and I can't believe how well the DCMTB/City Bikes team did; we got 1st and 3rd expert, 1st vet and 3rd open Duo. I think this will be a mainstay in Mt. calendar like Lodi if they are allowed to have it again.

More Photos


Wednesdays at Wakefield #1

I had Bruce Buckley take pics with my new camera, since he was still getting over this virus he had. This was my first expert race, so I was going to test out the waters and race with the big boys! So I warmed up with Kent, I knew he was going to ride strong, but it was good to ride with him. There were a bunch of DCMTBer's out there tonight, I think like 11 with 7 in the expert class. I didn't kill myself for the start since I knew I wasn't going to win this race, I didn't get caught up with some of the early wrecking that

people had. I was riding behind Roger at one point, and I was like if I can stay here this will be a good race. Well that didn't happen. I started slowing down a little, and Bruce would joke as I passed him saying things like you're only 5 minutes down you are almost there! Hence the smiles in the photos. I actually caught two people, but that was washed away when I wrecked. I was then playing catch up again. The downer of the night was Marc Gawdz passing me. I thought he was behind me, and I was hoping to finish in front of him. The good thing that happened in the race was I gave myself a realistic goal of having a finishing time of 1:12 for 4 laps. I got the time on my bike computer, but the official time is 1:13 something(my wreck took some time out and stopped my bike computer since the wheels were not moving). Next time I will shoot for 1:11 and might be able to do it, cause my shifting was messed up. I think I need a new cassette, and chainrings. Not sure of my placing but I know I wasn't DFL! It was fun seeing everyone after the finish and talking to people. May be there next week, have to see.


RFK Crit.

DCMTB had a pretty good turnout at the RFK Crit on Sunday.

For the men's Cat 5 Race it was Mike S. Matt D. and Me Darren B. The race was really short, and we started at 8:45am but could already feel the heat. It was cool having the three of us there, and since the field was small we were able to stick together if we wanted. The race had like 8-10 Capital Hill bike guys and I thought they would have controlled the race more, but they were not organized. I ended in second place in the peleton at one point so I then decided to go out on a solo attempt. I did it cause I thought well at least the capital hill bike guys will have to chase me down. I did a lap and some in change in front of the field, partly because Matt, and Mike were in front after I left and slowed up, making others chase me down. I did get my name announced twice on the speaker system since I was in the lead twice around the start/finish line! After I got caught it was in the last lap , the official tried to encourage me to get back to the field , but I was cooked. I did get to see Matty D get third since I was so far off the back I sat up and watched the sprint. This Mt. biker might even do another Road race this summer if it fits in the schedule.


24 Hours of Big Bear

So this was the return of the Tecate Team I had last year at the 24 hours of Allamuchy.
Jay, Steve, Sid and Myself. We decided to do Sport and thought we could get a good placing in that group.

I got a ride up with Kent and we had some good talks, and stopped at this converted trailer that was a bakery. The food there was really good, it hit the spot. We were at the camp area on Friday and waited for everyone to get in. We had a good Camp set up with Jay's RV and we combined our area with my DCMTB/CityBikes team. It was fun to race and hangout with everyone.

The Race
OK so I Started our team out and had to run for the lemans start. Well I did OK running in my Carbon Cleats, and got on the trail pretty early. I went out fast, and around mile 3 Kent and Mike form my DCMTB came by me. I wanted to go into the finish with them, but they were just going too fast for me. I ended up with like a 1:17 lap and I was happy with that. For my second lap I really worked on trying to get a good lap time, and for me I did a 14:59 which I was really happy with. Now saying this our team was having troubles :-( Jay had his granny gear explode on his first or second lap. I have never seen that happen before. The First Lap Sid did he had a broken chain that he had to fix twice. For Sid's second lap he ran 4-miles to the finish. With all this bad luck, we were only 6 minutes out of 1st place! Steve also lost the baton as well which was a 5 minute penalty so we were 11 minutes out of first. I did my first night lap, and did an ok ride, I like riding at night, but not racing. I don't seem able to really push it at night. Steve put in a really good 1:25 night lap and that kept us in the game. Sid's bike blew up at night, so he was out of the rotation. Now it was just Jay, Steve and I to do an extra lap to make up for Sid. Going into the morning we were in 3rd getting close to second and I was up to do a turn. I was going really strong, and Mike K. was behind me and he can downhill really strong. I should have just raced my race, but I went down the hill like a maniac and at the bottom, I must have smacked my rear dérailleur and then my bike was gone!!!!! So I was at mile 6 and thinking what to do. I was going to DNF, but if I do that I will let my team down. Behind me a guy had broke his Kona HT in half! so he had it worse then me, he had to walk/run his way out. So I make my bike into a single speed. I had it in a easy gear, so I could do the climbs. Well when you make a geared bike into a single the chain will eventually go to the next bigger cog and eventually the chain will bind and break. My chain broke again, and then I put the chain on a smaller cog, I was able to get a couple of miles out of that. Eventually there was a ticking that was the signal of the end, finally my chain would not move. I ran the last 1.5 miles into the finish. I had told people to let my team know that I had broken down. Well that lap ended up being 2:10 or something, and we finished out the race, and were able to get 5th place! I was somewhat shocked about that, I think we would have won the sport class if we had not had any issues, but that is the beauty and pain of 24 racing.
This was a good time, I had my best time at any Big Bear/Snow Shoe race with the bigger base camp. Maybe next year Tecate will ride again and race expert?


Virginia Mt. Festival Memorial Day

The VA Mt. Bike Festival is always a good time. I went down this year around 12pm with Mark Wigfield, who I met last year and have become friends with. Traffic was already backed up to Gainesville off of Rt. 66. We got to Stokesville in a pretty good time. I had the ambitious plan of doing a Shuttle Run to Reddish Knob and then going down Wolf trail and take the dirt road back to the campsite. We were lucky that James gave us a ride to the top, which was way cool of him. James was leaving for Iraq on Monday of Memorial Day weekend, but wanted to Mt. bike before he left. I did the down hill run with Mark and Tim. Reddish Knob is always a blast to go down, but there was a lot of blown down trees across the trail. We did the trail and luckily the dirt road back to the campground was downhill, because we got back right at sundown. We then met up with Pat who was our third in our camping group. Mark, Pat, and I made steaks and some rice/pasta that night and it hit the spot.

For the huge ride on Sat. there was a group of 9 of us that were going to do the same ride we did last year, including the push a bike climb up White Oak to Hankey mt. I was worried about this ride cause last year I cramped up pretty bad. We did the ride in about 6 hours with 4:40 bike time. I was really happy with my performance. I was riding the hills strong, and able to somewhat hang on the downhills. Another cool thing was to bike with 2 of my City Bikes Teamates Mike, and Matt. On Sunday we did the Southern Traverse with 7 of us and that is such a cool ride. For the 3 mile dirt road climb I was riding really strong, but after the first half of the ridge I kinda cooled off and didn’t seem to have my MoJo. The ST is an IMBA epic ride and is really fun with it’s off camber trails that you can fly down if you want. I had wanted Pat to do this ride, and it worked out great, with Eric and Pat riding together, with me waiting for them at the end. I would like to do more of this route, but would need to figure out how to do that.

On Monday Mark and I decided to do a dirt road ride on cyclocross bikes , that became pretty epic to me. We plotted the ride and have called it the West Virginia Logger http://www.mapmyride.com/ride/united-states/va/stokesville/444907902

We got the cross bikes ready and rode our bikes out to Reddish Knob, I had 34 x 28 gearing and I was humbled going up Reddish Knob. I am usually a good climber for my size (185lbs) inseason. I am good at 3 mile and less climbs. I have done 5 mile climbs OK. Reddish Knob was 7 miles and after 5 miles I was just trying to get up the mountain. After going over the mountain, we went down this dirt road with switch backs which was fun. We then did this logging road that goes along the mountain and is very pretty. The first part is nicer, cause the logging trucks have not flattened the road out, so you are doing more of a Jeep road. Then after that we went up Shenandoah Mt. but it was not as long since we were a good way up the mountain already. After that was a 9 mile down hill to a Jeep road climb up Hankey Mt. The part of the ride that was pretty sweet was where we came down the single track we came up on Sat. The Fire Road back into camp was a blast to ride on with the cross bike. I think I was faster on the cross bike than the mt bike for that part, I was able to rail the corners better. We ended being the last people out of the campground, but good news was that there was not much traffic at 6 pm when we got back to the DC area. I always like riding in the GW, and I hope I do cause this year I am going to try and do the SM100 which is 100 miles offroad and I am hoping to finish under 11 hours!