So grab a hot cup of cocoa and a blanket cuz this one may be long! Other than some work drama, I am having a great weekend! First off, I have to give mad props to Brendan, owner of Siren Bicycles. Brendan raced his first 12 hour solo race in Temecula yesterday and pulled off a 6th place! I haven't heard the whole story yet but read that he pulled a 1:20 minute lap to finish the race with only 10 minutes to spare! Way to go man!
Well, Saturday morning came quick considering I was at work until about 9pm on Friday night. I thought I was going to finish my day up at about two and get out for a ride. Yeah...didn't happen. I headed out to Fontana(or Fontucky as I like to call it!) at about 6:30am and was feeling pretty good. Once arriving it was cool and foggy which made me pretty happy.
I was told that if I wanted to move up to expert, this race would not count towards the #1 plate and jersey for the season. That brought forth a problem because Rory was on his way and he was only 40 points behind me in the standings. As soon as he arrived I asked if he would move up to sport and let me keep my hold on the season. He said that he planned on that anyway, so I was all good to go with my plan for an ass whoopin!
A quick warm-up and it was time to line up. Great thing about the expert class is they are one of the first to start and in today's case, we were the first group to start. As soon as the gun went off these guys took off! I thought to myself, Oh man, what have I done? The Fontana course has most of it's 1100 feet of climbing per lap packed into the first 3 miles. By the top of the paved road climb I was already about 45 seconds back! I just settled into a pace I was happy with and stuck it there. When I came through to start my second lap I still felt pretty good even though I knew I was in last place. My plan was coming together! Lap two was good. It was about 4 minutes slower than the first. With about 4 miles to go in that second lap I noticed one of the sport guys that I used to race with apparently trying to chase me down. Other than the fact that he had started about 6 minutes after me and he was on his last lap, and I still had one to go, I was not about to be passed by this guy. Now I will tell you that even though I always blew this guy away, he has one the same as me in the fact that he has dropped about 65 pounds this year and been putting in some mad time on the saddle. I was very impressed with his speed, yet I was not going to be passed! This chaser helped me push like mad through the last 4 miles of the lap. Lucky for me, the last 4 are rolling and flat. I have really improved in this type of terrain with all my road riding. I think I managed to put about a 4 minute gap on him in that last section. He told me after the race that he had been chasing me for a while and finally, with about 2 miles to go just blew up!
My third lap was...uhh..pretty sad! My last lap saw me post an identical time to my first race ever at Fontana exactly one year ago! The hard part was that about half way through the lap I passed what would be the last person I would see until coming in to the finish! With about 2 miles to go my legs started to seize in a way that scared the poo out of me! I threw it into the granny gear and pedaled softly for a few. I was able to make it all the way without stopping to stretch. Well my time was 2 hours and forty-two minutes! Are you ready...drum roll please...dead freaking last! Or 6th place....out of six! I was only 40 minutes behind 5th place! Just as I thought, I am not ready or able to race at that pace! Wow! These guys were so stinking fast that it was amazing! The better news is that I had a freaking blast! I would do it again if someone asked!
On my way home, I stopped off at Bonelli Park in San Dimas. My friend Mike who owns Honey Skateboards had a booth at the Downhill Skateboarding Championships. It was qualifying for downhill skateboarding, luging, and gravity bikes. This was truly amazing. His booth was right at the bottom of the course where the racers had to make a 90 degree turn at speeds of 30 to 44 miles an hour. (There was a guy with a radar gun standing in front of me.) Let's just say that about every third person turning the corner slammed spectacularly into the hay bails! It was really cool. No one was injured which was amazing after seeing them just hammer themselves into the wall!
Today I got to sleep in with the pups and Kristen! This was much needed in many ways! Kristen is working late today so we got to enjoy breakfast together this morning and even some time just hanging out!
My legs were pretty tight but I decided to take a risk and hit the road bike. I planned on a long ride and prayed that the cramps would not come back. I got on the road at noon and felt like a long ride was in store. I headed out towards Newberry Park and dropped down Portrero to Camarillo. I rode through the produce fields towards Pacific Coast Highway. I learned today that fields of red bell peppers smell a little like marijuana. Anyways, when I hit PCH it was socked in with fog and getting pretty cold! I worked my way down the coastline at about 20 mph. I stopped at Sycamore and refilled my bottles with all my Hammer Nutrition that I had brought in plastic baggies. I had filled up with Heed and Endurolytes in hope to stave off the cramps. I was back on the road and stopped to watch the surfers at County Line for a few minutes. Got back to flying along the coast and decided that I would climb up Encinal Canyon. I knew that this 7.76 mile climb at 6% the whole way was going to hurt! 50 minutes and 2000ft of elevation gain later, I was flying down the twisty, turny Decker Canyon Road. I rode over to the bike shop once back into town and filled up my bottles as they were closing up for the day. After about 10 minutes of chat I headed home. I was surprised how good I felt as I took the long way home. So all said and done, I had traveled 68.36 miles in 4 hours 10 minutes. Average speed was 16.4 with a max speed of 47 mph. Average heart rate was 150 bpm with a max of 175 bpm. Total elevation was 4126 feet of climbing and 4168 feet of descending! The only part of the ride that sucked was about 2 miles into it I had an old lady pull the dreaded left turn in front of me. Had to slam on my brakes and still kissed the car! Lady sped off too! Whatever?
All in all I had a great weekend! If you made it all the way to the end of this...thanks! Now the stress of tomorrow is falling upon me. Can't wait until Wed. night! 4 days off baby!