It was far from what I was expecting. So back track a day earlier. Weather, sunny and nice. Course dry, almost to dry. No worries, there is a little rain in the forecast. Perfect. If anything like last year it will make things amazing.
Fast track to this morning. Left here at 8:30 to cheer on club member, feed zone a few and drop off my Anthem. It's kinda sorta nice out. upper teens a little hazy, the sun looked like it was trying to come out. Got to the venue. I brought the Molly Monster with me so I had a few looks as she ran beside me down the road. So far so good. I have good coffee to drink, I'm happy. blah blah blah
One hour later, in the feed zone. Mother Nature turned into a raging bitch. Sorry but subtle went out the window when the ground started to shake. I think that everyone that was in the 9:30 race that road carbon bikes were all thinking that they might move up a few spots if lighting started to strike close by. Ya, it's making me think that aluminum is becoming a questionable material for Ontario racing.
The rain that came down was far from pleasant. Racers were not happy on their third lap. Hell feed zone people were not happy standing in the Mountainview Monsoon. I had Molly staring at me with that look (I'm going to shank him with a milk bone for this). Even with the shit rain the MCC destroyed it. Davis Ross destroyed the single speed field (I think they made him pee in a cup after the race he had that big a lead). Erin took third with a questionable forearm, watch out once she is healed. Ange took third in her division also. Dr. Bill rode his way to 2nd not being able to see (eye glasses/mud/rain not a great combination). If there was a mountainview rider in the field they ended up on the podium. I think there were 5 medals in the morning for the club. Great job everyone.
Alright, on to my shit show. The grand master pan was to end up with about 4.5 hours of riding today with a race mixed in. Hey O-cup is important but I still have a couple big fish I'm out to fry. Got home feeling good, had a small snack filled some bottles and headed back to Mountainview by means of the cross bike. Weather was still, well questionable. So I left the house wearing arm bands, knee bands and a vest and I felt comfortable. Legs felt great. The great I was hoping for. I've watched and I usually feel like shit at the end of a recovery week for some reason. Heather and I have talked about it
Riding in I saw some weird things, blue sky. Then it to warm. Then it got warmer. I still felt great though. A few intervals on the way in to get things firing. The route I took brought me out where I would have normally warmed up on the Anthem. Of course every other rider was out there and I got a few looks being on skinny wheels. Hit the club tent, a few things done and was on the Anthem for a few minutes before rolling into the start line.
SO first off, I like the heat, I normally do really well in the heat, I like to have a little heat training before hand. The start climb was typical and for me the worst thing. For those that are in the know I suck at blasting off the line. Always have and it's probably not going to change. Top of the first climb I was lucky if I was in the top 20. Thomas got pushed of course by a couple riders, it was a pretty shitty thing the way it happened. Lee was gone.
We hit the first technical section. So yes Mountainview is technical and yes half the people in Senior Expert are not that technically strong. Now for me that sucks because I'm always coming from the back on the first lap. I was a bit of an ass and started to tell a few riders to start running. They were dead stop, especially in the rock garden. I'm normally really really nice when it comes to passing but this pissed me off. Dead stop and just staring as the pack rode away. Oh by the way at this point the sun started to come out.
Come into the first downhill single track. Not really ride able, regroup. The first thing that popped into my mind was Summer Solstice. Now the funny thing with all of this I have more running/dragging a bike time in my legs than anyone in my division. I should have been killing them up this section. Ya well my body had other thoughts. More on that shortly.
The big part of Mountainview is technical, my strengths, my weakness, flat double track. Well that seemed to be the only place to make up the time. I would pull a rider in and they let me pass them in anything sketchy to technical and for every two coming in one would rip by me on the flats. That was lap one came through 16th and already thinking.
Lap two started ok in the feed but I could already feel the dead weight in my legs, Came across the ski hill climb that I normally run in mid chain ring and a couple cogs down from the top. Ya well I started to shift up then ran out of gears. The next sound was clunk, yes that was my granny kicking in. Spun up the switchbacks far from normal. My body started to get mad at me.
Ok start playing control, that's what i kept saying. Normally it would be work your strengths maintain the weakness. Attack the single track and recover and hammer the double track and hills in a controlled manner. Well I lost my place to recover on the first half of the course. It was sketchy to walk let alone ride. I knew I was riding like shit at this point because Andrew caught me. Yes he is fast (scary fast) but I normally hold him off till mid/end of the third lap, this was not event the middle of the 2nd lap.
Even before this I could feel the heat starting to rip me up. I almost pulled the plug after the first lap but kept saying to myself road or trail you need to put the hours in. So from the time I left my house the temperature was 20.5 degrees. It went to 32 degrees and a crazy amount of humidity. Back to the thought. I love the heat but I like to have a few rides in it before I race in it.
Hit the lower single track. I was still catching riders which actually shocked me. Now the worst thing to remind me I was riding slow. Coming up the false flat I was riding with a Cycle Solutions rider. I'm normally ahead of him but where things were we ended up chatting. Yes talking during a race. This was right about the time Mike Garrigan came riping up behind me and all I hear was "Matt are you out for a leisurely ride?" Ya thanks Mike.
I finished up my lap and pulled the plug. I knew it was stupid to keep pushing. My heart rate wasn't dropping in areas that it should, it was still pushing mid 150's when I went to get my bottles out of the feed zone. Thank you again to Erin for throwing bottles at me.
My body was really mad at me today, of course I still needed to ride home. Ya my car was sitting in my driveway. It was actually good though. Spun home for an hour. Total time on the bike was about 4:15. Legs feel like shit right now even after the awesome MCC BBQ.
I have figured out that I'm going to ride indoors all week with the furnace on full blast to get a little heat training in. Ok maybe not but it defiantly gave a reality check on how crappy the weather has been to date.
Overall, ya I'm a little pissed. With out the rain I think this would have been a venue that I could have broken into the top 10. Let alone it being a home town event which is always fun. Shit happens, I've had a pretty good seasons to date and it will just keep getting better. This was my blow up race of the year.
No links added today, they are all to the right.