Sunday, April 19, 2009

152: una versus the bull

This is Una. This is the bull.Friday afternoon as we arrived in Leesburgh and began to settle into our little compound, Una saw the bull and decided to give it a little what for. Una charged under the electric fence and after the bull. The bull, startled by the ball of fur charging at her turned and ran.

Harlow slipped through the electric fence to grab Una. I jump through as well. Harlow saying, "come here Una.." the Bull realizing the situation started to turn and come back for some pay back. nervously I said, "Harlow we gotta go, the bull is coming back." Harlow calmly collecting Una, "it's okay..." In my more high pitched agitated voice I conveyed the situation, "the bull is coming back!!"

Harlow, Una and I skirted our way through the electric fence and back to the safety of our compound before the Bull could get to us. That was the start of the weekend.

As for the Farewell Tour's race, it went well. Peaches, Buddy and I all did our best. Personally, I was really pleased with my ride. As a team, I am confident we left everything we had out on the course.

Today proved what I have always said, that these races are less about magic, and more about planning. I unfortunately made a bad strategic move and doomed my team in the process. I saw it happening but wrote a check my body couldn't cash thinking "I'll make it up here" I just dug the hole deeper.

About 1/4 into the race, we had gotten ourselves into second place. The other top teams in our class all switched to a single lap rotation. I insisted that we stick to our plan, and work through another round of double lap rotation. What I hadn't counted on was that in heat of the new sun on our second laps, Buddy, Peaches and I all fell off our first lap times 2-3 minutes. In essence we gave away close to 10 minutes with that error. Our team fell back to 4th place with 5th hot on our heels.

In the end, despite our chasing and charging we'd finish in a respectable fourth place, far more than 10 minutes down on 3rd. I think we would have loved to have made a trip to the podium, especially considering this was our farewell tour, but frankly we were all also satisfied with the fact that we did our best. Truth was, we were the 4th best team in our class today.

The finish of the race was somewhat bittersweet. We were excited for the end of the race, pleased with our efforts, but also the reality of "farewell tour" began to really sink in. I was actually a little sad with the very real possibility that this might have been the last time Buddy, Peaches and I race in one of these things together.

As I said above, I was really happy with my effort, I "raced" all my laps, was aggressive and never allowed myself to be satisfied. I just kept on the suffering button and pushing each lap. It was a good effort for me especially during the off season.
Totally proud of Monkey, Johnny, and Kat who took 5th in the coed division, but were the first team with 2 women on it. Monkey and I didn't hang out too much once the racing started but it was cool to watch the three of them working together and making things happen. (that's not johnny in the photo, but Doron)

Overall, our little compound did pretty well:

1st Duo: Wes/Jeb
2nd Duo: Bad Andy/Auer
3rd Duo: Les (international man of mystery)/Elk
5th Duo: Jan/CZ
1st Coed Tri: L-web/Rotten/Slick Rick
5th Coed Tri: Monkey/Bad Kat/ Sweet Johnny
? Coed Tri: Doron/Shawn/Harlow
3rd men's tri: Bilson/Meatball/Hardy
4th men's tri: Fatme/Peaches/Buddy
? men's tri: Norman/Joe/Matt
1st master's tri: Brian B (father of jeb, wife of L-web/Kurtee/ Little Tom (formerly kid chris)
Solos included Mark the Shark, Sven and Melanie Nystrom, and Pete Kennedy.

Props to Mark the Shark, and Cz who made their debuts in the endurance mtb game, and both did very well. I expect they'll both be back. Also to Doron, who made her endurance debut on a borrowed bike, and as I understand it had never really mountain biked before this weekend.

And her dog bit Tom. (no one was injured)

As I was kinda getting all emo, as everyone settled down after the race, Peaches in the manner that Peaches always does, smiled at Buddy and I and said, "you know the Rolling Stones have had like what 20 farewell tours or something ?"

Hope once again springs eternal.

here are some pictures and additional commentary.

Jim came out and although I'm sure didn't plan on wrenching for everyone, he saved probably 4 team's races this weekend; thank you so much for all your help Jim.

Tom's bike was cannibalized repeatably. Parts from his bike are currently on 6 other riders bikes today...

I'm not a bike racer but, I did sleep in the back of a Honda Element last night. If you look carefully you can see Monkey under that pile of sleeping bags.

The calm before the storm.

Rotten and L-Web, coupled with Slick Rick, just 13 hours away from victory.

Slick Rick the ruler and International Man of Mystery Les Leach.

Jan and Bad Andy just before the start.

The morning before the race I had to go back and ride a section of single track that I had followed Buddy through the night before. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to ride the same lines, or at the same speed without his wheel to follow. I don't think I ever nailed it like during the pre-ride...

Jeb leads out the start. Jan is also in that lead group...




Anonymous said...

hmmmm Guinness.....

robert said...

it was awesome to race against you three. so strong, and still the guys i look up to. i meant it as a compliment when i reflected on chasing you at Allamuchy a few years ago. it was fun going out with your team on each lap. sorry you couldn't stay and have a high life with me.

rsdmag said...

Your team made the most polite passes of the race- it was a joy moving ever every time you went past!

Mike said...

you guys had a great race and your compound was amazing, i expected david koresh to walk out at any moment.

gwadzilla said...

good job across the board...

I wish they would post the LAP TIMES so I can figure out my efforts and see how my injury and my challenges effected each lap

we were the team behind you
but I never looked at the board

not close enough to contend... unless we had started the fight earlier in the game...

in this case I may have been both the missing link and the weakest link

such is life as the slow guy on a fast team

congrats to all who raced
and great showing by the C3 team

gwadzilla said...

I need to read this a third time...

reunion... or farewell tour?

what was the team name?



when I have the focus I will slow it down