The first race has come and gone, whens the next one. It hurt, it was fun, oh how I missed it. Woke up to something I was really excited to see, a dusting of snow. My thoughts jump to worst case scenarios and start thinning Mansfield will be under a foot of snow. luckily that want the case. A weak short warm up, just long enough to know Thea legs were a little draggy. Settled into the start coral a little farther back than I wanted to be, I'd planned on keeping it semi sane of the start. This meant get in the lead pack and get pulled through the start loop, It took only a few minutes until tho e burn set it,yep this is racing.
The first lap of 25 kms, well just felt like shit. Not horrible,it just felt awkward. Lots of bobbling on the bike, lungs didn't feel great, legs were burning, eyes were fuzzy,pretty much everything. I was expecting the pain in the body, it was the bike handling that was bothering me. I normally make up for any fitness weakness with some good bike handling skills, at th is point I wa wondering where I left them. I was riding the brakes way to much, I wasn't t letting the bike find the fastest smooth line. I just felt awkward while at race pace. Of course the whole time I'm talking to myself about this. Was the 29er a bad idea? This was my thought at first then sit started to click.
Second lap things just started to feel right, heartate was still as high but it felt good. Like I could hold a lecture and not be gasping, I also seemed to find some of my bike skills. That thought about the 29er went out the window. I was rolling through things faster, of course a couple climbs really started to burn but started paying attention and being in the right gear again. The fun returned. seems that nothing has changed, I still see to need an hour to warm up. Second lap felt short, it was more that I was dramatically quicker. Crossed the line with a smile on my face. At this point I think I was top 10 overall, Of course being the old man in the young division kept me away from the podium, would have been 2nd if I was that magical one year older. I'm one of those rare ones that's actually looking forward to turning 40next year. Jacob put AWI Racing on the radar for 2012 taking the overall win.
I'm feeling pretty happy with my fitness, it needed that hard fire up. I also created the to do list for the xtc. Stan's wheels are on order, I must say I wish I had them yesterday minus the one nasty stick I picked up which probably would have snapped a spoke. A minor slimming of the bars is in order. I like the 690 but mentally its hard heading towards two trees wondering if your going to fit. I'm feeling that 650 to 660 may be the happy number. Last but not least, brakes. Already looking into a change for something more powerful. The stock brakes just don't seem to be powerful enough to slow down the wagon wheels. It would have explained why the bike came with a 180 rotor, of course that came of for the 160.
Let the season begin!!!!!