Sunday, April 18, 2010

2010: Front Range MTB Series #2 NAAC

Saturday it was off to golden and another STXC season primer at the NAAC in Golden, CO put on by Alec Uitti and Erik Werner of  Race Pace Promotions.  The course for this second race of the series was much shorter than the previous race at Bear Creek measuring in at 1 mile.  Despite the short track there was plenty of pain to go around with many little kickers and tight corners forcing a constant redline effort.  There was even a sweet little log jump mixed in.

I did my best to hang with the rest of the fast kids and ended up pulling off a 7th place.  I felt really good about this considering my only goal was to avoid getting lapped out of the race - a goal I narrowly achieved.

My partner in crime and teammate, Kenny Lanham dropped me right off the line and held on for 4th.  I think it might have had something to do with the words "Superfly".

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

2010: Front Range MTB Series #1 Bear Creek

Last Saturday I tackled the first XC race of the season along with my NG teammates Michael Mequi and Jeff Leischner. The venue was Bear Creek Lake Park on a fast 3-mile course (A=5 laps, B=4 laps, C=3 laps). I had a great time watching the pros hammer out the Men's A race and pulling out a respectable 7th place in the Men's B.

The course started out with a "hammer down" climb up a wide gravel road, past the registration area, funneling into the first section of singletrack. Watching the A race hammer this out was impressive to say the least. From the singletrack a steady climb over a wooden bridge to the first kicker and then off the back side for some more fast singletrack along the road with a few hairpin turns. The riders got a really good taste of the 15-20mph crosswinds on this section of the course. I was blown out of the singletrack at least twice coming close to eating dirt. Next up was a fast drop onto doubletrack (all big ring here) followed by the second steep climb. Many of the SS riders were walking this section although I did see one guy make the climb. I sat back just a bit to let him finish (kudos whoever you were that was RAD). The last section was again fast doubletrack. I'm guessing speeds here were between 20 and 30mph. I was in the biggest gear and spinning my guts out. A quick hairpin turn and a mild climb finished off the effort rewarded by a fast singletrack drop. This was my favorite downhill drop of the race. After this drop it was a quick right turn back onto the gravel road, up the hill, and onto the next loop.

For the most part I was happy with my race performance. One regret I have was not pushing hard enough at the start of the race. I lost the lead pack of riders on the first climb and got caught up behind some slower riders leading into the first section of singletrack. I had more NOS in the tank at that point and wish I would have used it on the first uphill attack. After gaining a few positions in laps 1 and 2 I rode by myself the remainder of the race. I think if I could have stuck with the lead group I would have had a chance at a top 5 finish. This winds made riding in a group a much better option for success.

Mountain Flyer Article