I am sitting on my back deck eating Riders Pizza, hydrating and waiting for my laundry...perfect time for a little recap from day 1! The 5 line summary is at the bottom for those who don't need the play by play...
Yesterday was a blur of driving, ferries, line ups and buses...I left home at 4:30am and got back just after 6pm. In between I met racers from South Africa, Australia, and Mexico, checked in, picked up my awesome BCBR swag, learned how to fight a bear and avoid getting saddle sores and diarrhea at the racer meeting, and caught up with my newest biking buddies, Adrienne and Davin.
Serious racer meeting stuff.
Did you know there are 550 racers from 26 countries in the race?
Today, however, was a bike race. And a grand one it was! My home turf meant racing a course where I knew every root and drop on trails that I ride every week. It was a gift to know what was coming next so i could prepare mentally and physically for each section in advance. My goal was to take full advantage and go hard in my backyard while I had the opportunity. Hey I'm gonna be trashed by day 3 anyways so why not go all out on from day one? :)
We started on the main drag in waves of 50 riders, self seeding ourselves based on goal finish times. 4 minutes between waves, I went in the 3:30-4:00 hour heat. I stood up and cranked as hard as I could off the line and worked hard to stay on the back of a fast pack down the logging road to Bevan. I learned a lot about drafting in those first few minutes. Wow it's awesome! But it's brutal if you fall off the back lol.
I tried to hammer the road because I anticipated a bottleneck and slow pace in the single track and ... I guessed right. The wave starts spread us out but we still managed to come to a full stop once we entered the Bevan trails. We rode the Snow to Surf course and it was carnage from the get go. Dudes were sliding all over the place and biting it left right and centre. Why you ask? Apparently not everyone has ridden on damp roots lol! Not wet roots like we have on the Island I guess.
Lets just say it was a slooooow ride all the way to Nymph and the start of the forbidden plateau 10k climb. But we got there and then it was all up for about 40 minutes. I was surprised but there were some really strong climbers!
Aid station for a water and cliffe block reload and then it was all downhill for about 40 minutes through the best trails- Two Sheiks, Cabin, Slither, Transmission, Catnip and then back to the Bears Bait trails. I figured the climb would have spread us out for the downhill but I found myself in another unfortunate traffic jam for a lot of it. Peeps were a bit spooked on the rocky bits and grabbing serious brake. I'm sure that will be me once I'm in unfamiliar territory but for the first time I was actually passing dudes on the descent woot woot!
Back to Cumby via Whites Bay and one more climb- up Twoandajuice, Buggered Pig and the HOT road to Teapot... Crashed hard in a freak accident just after the little up on Teapot trying to squeeze between a dude and a tree...upside down yelping with a crash cramp for a few minutes but I survived and got back on the horse lol. Railroad, Crafty and the classic Blackhole Space Nugget finish and I was finito. Completely. Like I had to lie down for a minute tired.
I should have eaten/drank a bit more in the second half but the heat made it hard to stomach. It was shockingly hot today after the colder weeks of rain we have had. There is always tomorrow to work on that...and they next day...and the next day...and...
Very well marked course
Very enthusiastic volunteers!!
One big 10k climb
One long flowy descent
Three bottles of water
2 packs of Cliffe margarita blocks
2 S Cap electrolytes
3:45 hours of virgin BCBR racing! I don't know my official finish time yet but it was somewhere around there.
Ok must eat more...here are some shots of base camp from this am. I've never seen so many people riding their bikes while brushing their teeth...