First of all, I won $80 at the mountain bike race yesterday. That will be going to the Spero Project. If anyone is willing to match that, please make your donation at http://www.thesperoproject.com/Make_A_Donation . Let me know if you do. It will be interesting to see tally up how much we've raised throughout the year.
I still have a lot of excitement left over from yesterday's race. I spent a good chunk of that 6 hours and 40 minutes of riding by myself, and that gives you a lot of time to think. At first I would just break the course down in my head. I knew where I wanted to lock out my fork and where I wanted to change it back. I knew where the really loose corners were. I knew where I could eat and where I could take a drink. I knew where to play it safe and where to take some risk. A few times I got those mixed up and ended up over my bars once, starring at dirt another time, and ripping my favorite wind vest on a tree, so now it looks like a highschooler's t-shirt at the YMCA gym (if you've been there, you know what I mean).
Then I would try and figure out who was the next guy in front of me. Their name would become a mantra that I would repeat over and over in my head until I catch them. It's weird, I know. But it felt like it was working.
Once I realized I was in 3rd place I actually got a little emotional. That always happens to me for really long races. A mechanical multiplies this. The same thing happened at Joe Martin when my shifter broke. You just get proud of yourself for overcoming adversity. Even though this was a really small race and didn't mean much to most people, the way the day played out really mattered to me. I really felt like I needed it this weekend. A few weeks ago I had told my cycling/marriage/spiritual/career/etc mentor (Brad Cox) about my fundraising plans. I don't think he'll mind me posting an excerpt of what he said.
"You know that by doing this, you’re taking the fight to a different level right? Satan hated you on general principals before, but now it’s “personal”. He will try whatever he can to undermine what you’re attempting… your fitness, bike racing, marriage, etc."
Well...without going into detail, on Monday Sarah and I got some news that will impact our financial situation. It was completely out of the blue. Everything is fine...I'm not looking for sympathy or anything. In the grand scheme it is a very small and temporary setback.
It's the timing that stands out the most to me. It's also what makes me believe in this fundraising thing even more. So when I found out I was racing for the money, it got me super pumped. My 9th lap was probably nearly as fast as any. Like I said, I didn't just want it this weekend; I felt like a needed it. When you feel like you need it, nothing can stand in your way. Not a mechanical, not the pain in your legs, not your tired lungs.
Anyway, here is the video from the race. Enjoy.
The big news of the day has to be the Contador ban. A few things -
1. It sucks that whenever cycling makes the news headlines, it is always something negative.
2. I don't agree with the retroactive ban.
It's been one year and seven months since his test, and he has gotten quite a bit of racing in. Granted, all those results are over-turned; but it seems like giving him a retroactive ban is such a small slap on the wrist. He will only be out of racing for 5 months. If he was guilty (which they decided he was) then I think he should have to take 2 years off from racing...which means that would start now. If he was innocent, then charges should be dropped and he can keep on going. Oh well...it's not an American court so my limited knowledge of the justice system (mostly from Law and Order re-runs) probably doesn't apply.
It sucks for the guys who finished second to him. Now they are bumped up to first, but who really wants to win like that? In my opinion those guys still finished second, but maybe there should be an asterisk beside their names saying the winner was a convicted doper.