Blood. Sweat … and Gear.
Mid-season recap time!
I’ve had the opportunity to get myself in with 3 endurance races, and one XC WORS race so far. The singlespeed thing has been quite a learning experience, an absolute blast to ride for fun and race for sure – still looking forward to eventually getting a geared full suspension bike soon!
6 Hours of Northern Kettles: Overgeared a little bit, should’ve changed to a 19 or a 20 in the rear. Had a blast. Loved the trails. PAINFUL race. Developed massive blister on the palm of my left hand — at the cost of finishing my last lap after 5.5 hours. Wasn’t able to ride for a week after that though. ~46ish miles?
WORS – Wausau: 9 Mile Forest! Have a history here, and things either go great or explode in front of me. Repeated my 2nd place from the last time I raced here. Rode the SS Sport Class and haven’t hurt that much in a loooong time. Had some fun battles with other SS riders in the first lap, slowly dropped all but one guy who took off at after the first climb and left ALL of us in the dust! Kudos to him! 2nd lap was a chasing game but kept everyone at least 30 seconds behind me at the end. Loved hearing the comments and cheers from other riders/fans especially during the final sprint finish! Brought home some hardware – always feels good. 😀 Hands felt good for this shorter race, no issues anywhere! 34-18 gearing was perfect!
6 Hours of John Muir: Brilliant weather. Sunny, warm, AMAZING trails as always. Made it through 3 hours and was feeling great on the bike, but was developing the same hand issues. Pulled out of the race and decided to fight another day. I had changed my gloves thinking that was the issue, and it didn’t help. Made it through ~30 miles of racing that day. Would’ve liked that 19 in a few areas, that’s for sure. Not sure about my hand situation though.
Where I’m at now: haven’t ridden the MTB much due to all the rain we’ve been having. The couple rides I HAVE been on have been great. Been trading in the bicycle for the motorcycle on my morning commute though … gotta stay mentally fresh, right?
I’ve switched my grips out, and am using thick-wrapped bar tape instead. I hope the extra width will aleviate some of the issues I’m having. We’ll see … Levis Trow 50 miles is on Saturday.
Last time I did that race, I only made it halfway b/c of illness. Not this year though! Ready to pound out some solid miles and get back into it. I WILL be re-gearing to a 34/19 or 34/20 for this race as well.
Going to attempt to NOT get injured at the following events either. So far I’ve got some nasty scars on both biceps from run-ins with trees (almost impaling myself on one in Wausau!) and while they aren’t affecting my riding, I have a hunch that while scars make a guy look macho, Jen can only take so much. 😉
Catch you on the flip side!