Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Southern 'Cross

I love when blog entry titles just come to me in a flash. As Arnold would say, "Dats a guud wun.

Anyhow, KD's photos are now posted and I thought I'd throw a couple up and offer a brief report. In a word, the race was mud. 'B' field was pretty small...probably somewhere in the 18-22 range. Matt, Kyle, and I all came to repreezent DC. The drive up was a little freaky, with the gas gauge on the Golf pooping out. We were driving along, chatting merrily, and I noticed the gas meter just plunge to the 'E.' "Strange," I thought. "I just filled the tank 8 hours ago." The things busted and I'll have to bring it in for a look over and an oil change.

The setting in Richmond was nice. The Park was sizeable and the soccer fields were packed. I wasn't expecting much from the legs, as I'm on a training regimen that has been kicking my ass...royally. The course was a good mix of technical, paved, and power. The technical sections were pretty close to off-road single track. I have to pat myself on the back for handling those, for the most part, smoother than I might've expected. Mixed in with the manageable single track, there were several sections of deep, gunky, sticky, muddy mud. This stuff was the ruin of the race. It wreaked havoc on the mind, body, spirit, and equipment. Once again, my shifting went completely awry and mechanical pitfalls plagued the entire race. My bike performed like a nervous eight year-old girl at her first holiday dance recital. In the end, I battled all adversity (including the highest barriers I've ever seen, a bout of nauseau going into the woods on the las lap, pretty chilly conditions, and the mud [did I mention the mud?]) and sprinted hard against Matt for a 7th place finish.

Diagnosis of the bike's maladies later in the week yielded brake pads that were worn completely through as well as a rear shifter that plain doesn't work. MABRA champs are a day away and the bike still isn't working. I'd hate to miss the championships.

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