24 hours of Big Bear-2009

Quick write up for the event. I was on the DCMTB team in the expert class and we were going into a field stacked with ex-pros and fast dudes. I was hoping that we could be competitive against the Gripped Racing boys our DC rival at most races. I drove up with Kent and Vince, and we made camp, with Kevin, Leland, Mike, and Jonathan getting there shortly after us. We made some food Friday night, and the steaks I contributed to came out nice. I went to bed early.
I woke the next day and we made Kent's famous chocolate, bacon, bannana pancakes. After that Alex his wife Stephane and Sara came. Mike found out that the bolt to my Mountain bike was stripped so I did not do the 2nd lap for the team(was fighting Mike for it). Alex let us barrow his car and Sara and I went to a small town down the road and got a cairage bolt to do the job of the stripped out bolt. I also took Sara to the local bakery to get some tasty treats.
My thoughts about the course:
The course was really slow, I mean my dawn lap(while it was pretty) was like riding on Velcro!!! Laird did a reroute, and in doing so made the course 13.5 miles, so a good night lap was in the 1:30's. I was personally little disappointed in my performance, I wanted to be getting the same times as Mike(who rocks on this course), but I wasn't able to, and I also felt like I couldn't kill the course cause when you started to push you lost traction in the mud. I will say that the mud at the Big Bear course is better then when it was at Snowshoe, it doesn't cake up your bike but it makes it feel slow. I felt the most in control I have ever felt there, I wasn't fighting the rocks like I was 3-4 years ago. I had a real fun time from mile 3-7 on my dawn lap I felt I was flowing with the trail and going pretty fast. I also made it up the steep hill every lap even with all the mud.
How the Race unfolded:
After the first rotation we were 53minutes! behind 1st expert. Kent had a flat tire(he would go on to have two more) So as the night wore on we soldiered on and on one lap Jonathan got a flat as well. Mike's first two laps were impressive, I was able to hold an OK time at night which I usually don't. As the race was ending we were still in last place, around 12 minutes behind Gripped Films and Mike and Jonathan were racing to get me back on the course so I would do another lap. I was prepared to do it, but at the same time didn't want to do it for no reason. On Mike's last lap he passed the Gripped Racing's Doug who had double flatted that lap. So Jonathan needed to keep the pressure on for us to beat Gripped Films. I suited up thinking I wouldn't have another lap, cause Jonathan would have to pull a 1:23 2-minutes faster then his first lap. Well Jonathan came in at 12:03 and pulled a 1:26! only 2 minutes slower then his first lap. I was really impressed that he was able to pull that and on a SS! So we ended up in 5th in the expert field.

About my Race:
-I felt good on the bike didn't have too much back issues, I believe this to be from trying to stand and climb when I could.
-I have gotten better at riding in general, before I was weary in some spots on the course now I was just riding through it.
-My bike didn't break!!!! Last year the chainstay broke and the year before the deraileur got ripped off.
-I rode my secondary tires cause of the mud and the CST tires worked great considering they are about $12 29er tires.
-I wish I would have pushed myself more on the course. I also thought I had to do 4 laps so when I would have killed myself on my last lap I didn't do that on my 3rd lap.
-Thanks to Kent for driving and making it a fun time
-The pizza place Puccini's outside of Cumberland is the bomb! whenever I am on Rt.68/70 going through the area I try to stop by.
-Sara came and supported me again, so I was happy she was there but sad I couldnt' show better. There is always next year

For next year this race will be the national champinionships I am thinking that I will try and race the Vet class then.


Sam said...

I guess looking back there are always things you wish you could have done better. Sounds like you had a great time and raced well with a very respectable finish! Really glad to hear your back didn't bother you! Enjoyed reading the report!

Sara said...

I think you did great :) Plus, the fact that you didn't break your bike this year and scare me when you didn't come back at like 3 a.m. was a welcome change!