Monday, October 22, 2012

Ruts N Guts - Day 3

Sunday's course is very similar to Friday's. The fast and straight grass section and asphalt section were cut out because it belongs to a church, and that area is too busy on Sundays. The sandy steep hill is also gone. Now there is an additional starecase followed by a pretty steep climb. Some of the tight, technical, sandy turns are now in the opposite direction. If there is a good line through there, I never found it. The change I was most excited about was the removal of the tall barrier before the steep climb. It meant that I could now ride that climb, which suits me better I think.
I was pretty tired for a couple reasons. First, I had been driving back and forth between OKC and Tulsa each day. I was getting home after midnight, and I'm not used to going to sleep that late. Second, the fatigue of two hard races already that weekend was evident in my legs. I wanted a good warmup, but that wouldn't be the case. They called us to stage 30 minute before our race. So much for spinning out the fatigue. I rode the gravel hill of the parking lot a few times, but I didn't want to go too far and risk missing the callup. It probably didn't affect the race at all though. Even the guys that did warm up had to sit in staging for 30 minutes and get stale, so we were all on a level field.
I had Sarah and my dog Tanker cheering me on that day. It always helps to have some fans out there. You can always dig deeper when you hear peopl you love cheering for you...or when you hear people you don't know heckling you.
I was on the front row again for being 5th in the omnium. It wasn't as crowded as the day before. I had a decent start...probably top 6 or 7. Skyler and the Drummonds took off early. They were gone before I knew it. Eventually is was down to Troy, Kaleb, Jess, and me. I was pretty exhausted after the fist few laps. I was thinking I'd be lucky to have a top 7 finish. Eventually we got a little gap on Kaleb and a little gap on Troy.
When you are tired, your mind starts telling you crazy things. At one point I was seriously thinking the best way to beat Jess would to let him go and then just ride my own pace. That wouldn't have been smart at all. How can you beat somebody by letting them drop you? I needed to stay as close as possible and hope he makes a mistake. On the newer stair climb he mounted his bike in a hard gear and was bogged down. I was in my 28 and spun right up the climb. I gave it the beans for as long as I could. Chris Drummond (no relation to the Drummond brothers that kicked my butt all weekend) was at the top of the climb each lap telling me how much gap I had. Even when I was pretty sure I had it, I kept my focus on the course. I didn't want a repeat of Friday. There was a really big gap to the top 3 guys, so I kept it pretty conservative.
For the weekend, I ended up with a 5th place finish and two 4ths. The way the points worked out, that was good enough for a 5th in the omnium. Compared to the Rivercross, I felt great. The top 3 guys were definitely in a class above me. They really proved that on Sunday. Jess and I had some great battles, but he had more points that I did. The rest of the season will be full of good racing with Jess, Troy, Kaleb, Tommy, etc. I was debating on upgrading to a 2 after this weekend, but I think I'll stay a 3 for a little while longer; at least until I win a race or the end of the season comes.
Watching the pro/1/2 race is always humbling. Some of those guys, like B$, were riding the main staircase so fast, it was unbelievable. I think they were riding the back staircase too. Crazy. I have a lot to learn.

1 comment:

  1. Would love to read ISMR report and your winter/spring training thoughts if you have time. = Travis