Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Belated Spooky Cross

Yeah so this ones a little late.

Saturday saw two cars full of Nebraskans headed east to do battle with the loathsome Iowegians for Spooky Cross. Rafal started out the day for our motley crew racing his SS in the 4’s race. After a poor start he slowly muscled his way through the pack to wrest a podium spot away from some honkey with a bike that cost more than my first car. Then he started talking about margins, and I started making polish jokes.

When we first rode the course, it was obvious that this course was pretty rough. There was also a little seeping spring that we rode across, that would become a giant sucking mud hole by the end of the day. When the 3’s and 1,2,3’s race came around Mike Miles, Noah, Marcus, Rafal, and myself lined up along with fellow Nebraskans Rich Pearson and Kevin Murray. With a Cannon blast we were off. I had a pretty descent start, but Noah and Mike were up front. On the first run up I was behind two riders from Iowa City that were on the same team that were side by side. I felt like going a little faster so I started to squeeze between them pushing my bike. Fullerman was on the right, and had shouldered his bike, as I went by he turned his shoulders to avoid the limbs on the side of the trail. This turn of body swung his back tire around and smacked me right in the mouth. I managed to get by, but Fullerman can back around just a few moments later and would prove to be the lone Iowegian on the 3’s podium that day. At that point I was sitting in 4th trying to keep Mike Miles in sight for the first few laps. But he just kept stretching out his lead.

At this point I started trying to do dumb stuff. For some reason this year I am not taking 100+ degree turns with a wide approach. I am trying to ride the shortest distance, right up to the apex and then muscle through it, instead of staying wide and leaning into the curve to carry some speed. This was the reason I went down down last week, and why I went down again this week. Both times it was not the act of going down that cost me time, rather it was having to realign my front end. While I was messing with handlebars, Rich Pearson came around along with a few other riders.

Now I will say this, Rich Pearson is my hero. I mean when I am his age I hope that that I have a modicum of his speed on the bike. That being said, I don’t want him to beat me in a bike race. Well, in true proverbial fashion, experience and cunning triumphed over youth and stupidity.

I managed to reel back in the other guys that came around but I never got within a hundred yards of Rich again. Occasionally, I would catch a glimpse of Miles, but Noah was out of site, as was Fullerman. It was Noah that would prove to be the victor. Mike , Rich and I would round out the top 5 in the 3’s. Matt Farnham would bring home 3rd in Elite race. Nebraska was well represented.

I also was impressed at how awesome the fans are in Iowa. As I walked back to our cheering section Rafal handed me a warm Busch Light……having never been the kind to look a gift horse in the mouth, I took it and started making polish jokes. One of the ladies that was walking by proceeded to offer us all cold beverages, and then gave us gift certificates to a local restaurant. Sweet! Thanks Lee!

1 comment:

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