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Monday, April 4

6 Hours of Warrior Creek (and oh yeah, that contest)

First off, there was no announcement on Friday regarding the winners of the Team Topeak Ergon Basecamp video contest. We have been told we will hear something today. I have beer in the fridge if I need to celebrate tonight, and I have some torches and pitchforks next to the front door in case I need to run out of the house, gather a mob, and storm the Topeak Ergon Team castle.

Now on to the race stuff.

I knew the 2011 6 Hours of Warrior Creek was not going to be an easy race. Not only were the two guys who stood above me on last year's podium returning (Ross and Eric), but also the two local Charlotte fasties (Luke and Tim) who put the wood to the single speed class at the winter short track races were also in attendance.

Add to that Kelly Klett who won the single speed class at Southern Cross back in February, Charlotte's very own Tom Boonen impersonator (Noel "The Killa Thrilla Gorilla" Kirila), and the other 27 SS'ers of unknown skill and prowess... getting back on the podium for a third year in a row might prove to be difficult.

I would have to show no quarter to mine enemies, and there would be no mercy on the course. No stopping for injured riders and going for help like last year. If I see a rider down I'm either gonna steer clear or try to squish them out of their misery under my 2.35 Rampage.

I lined up towards the front of the pack. It's not that I was confident in my fitness, it's just that it's a great place to be.

photo Cred: Queen City Cycles

As we blasted down the pavement Kelly was the only SS'er I saw in front of me before we got to the woods. I stayed a rider behind him until I saw him drop his bottle. Then I spent enough time behind him taunting him over his loss until I ran out of jokes, at which point I passed him looking for someone else to tongue lash.

"Hey Kelly, I've got two bottles so if you need another bottle I think you'll find one back there on the trail if you turn around and go back for it."

I decided I would keep up the hard work for the first two laps. The mud was slowing things down, and making the climbs difficult on a little guy like me. Coming up with the power to stay on the bike on the greasy, gooey, peanut butter climbs put a hurt on my back pretty quick, but I wanted to establish my place amongst the faster riders and not get slowed down in the pack. Eventually Luke caught me and we rode together to finish out the first lap and almost the entire second lap.

On lap three I had to cut back to endurance race pace. Luke informed me that he was told there was a rider ahead of us (huh?), and shortly after that I lost Luke as I settled into my slower pace hoping my back would get sorted out as the trail dried. The third lap was uneventful and slightly less painful, and the conditions were improving by leaps and bounds... except for the random deadfall that kept showing up on the trail due to the high winds.

On the fourth lap, I just felt like I was in a zone. Things were feeling better, the course was the way I remembered it being in the years before, and the two mustard packs I inhaled were staving off the cramps I was feeling earlier. I knew I'd be able to punch it on the last lap, but towards the end of the fourth lap Tim came around me all thick legged and powerful on one of the final climbs. Either I would get him back with a last lap attack or not. Either I would maintain my position of third (which I thought I might be in) or be bummed to find out I was now truly in fourth.

photo cred: Lunchbox

So I hammered through the final lap. I felt great, although I never reeled Tim back in, and I was also relieved to keep Kelly, Ross, Eric, and Noel out of my rear view mirror. I was pretty stoked to be doing this well without doing any real training yet this year and that the new bike was really working out nicely... well aside from the fact that I measured my saddle height wrong and rode the whole race with my seat about 1/2" too low making it so I was unable to pull all the way around on my pedal stroke... doh. I finished up, found out that some guy named Finkel from Michigan had won the race putting me in a one-spot-off-the-podium fourth place, a position I would have never worked that hard to keep had I known. I must not have noticed Finkel at the start line since he looked like this earlier in the day:

I shoulda known something was up when I saw the nice ceramic mugs they were handing out on the podium.

To save some time tomorrow on the re-re-hash, I finished 4th outta 33 single speeders.

How tough was the single speed class? I was 14th overall on the day meaning that there were four single speeders in the top fourteen teams/solo combined... out of a field of 281.

Sheee-it.*

Later Brian Conroy (from the short track photo above) let me know that he had won the 40+ class solo...

with a time that was 21 minutes slower than mine. I coulda won the old guys race. Hell, I coulda won the old man duo category by a few seconds.

Meh. I'm tired of young people being all single speedy, yet they don't even recognize an Ace Ventura reference when the hear it. Where's the culture for our youths?

Win some, lose more than some. I heard there was a bar of gold in the prize bags... that's what I heard anyways.

* Doh, Mel and Will Black (winning coed duo team) were in there with a 6th overall... on single speeds. I bet they liked Ace Ventura because they are old like me.

18 comments:

WB said...

I am pretty sure the team that won the co-ed class were both on SS as well.

Anonymous said...

Pussy!

dicky said...

Yes, I was crushed by the Black Cartel. I wouldn't have been able to race the coed duo class anyways, since my hermaphrodite days have been behind me ever since the "procedure."

Montana said...

Did you really just put Ace Ventura and culture in the same paragraph?

dicky said...

It was my generation's Casablanca.

Peter Keiller said...

At least Luke didn't embarrass me.

Beau said...

Did I catch a little DKM Hang'em High reference there too? Laces out DAN!

dougyfresh said...

I know about Ace Ventura. Guess I'm not young anymore. meh



laces out!

Anonymous said...

solid work on the sleeveless / arm warmer combo.

Jared Janowiak said...

Did you say "...like a glove...." as you mounted your bike onto your new rack?

Anonymous said...

I was really expecting the * to offer up 'Golly'. And yes, I have seen a grown man naked.

Emily said...

I never saw Ace Ventura, or any other Jim Carrey movie, actually. Yay... I am young people!

PS, did Carey Lowery beat you? she, too, was on a singlespeed.

PPS, looking forward to finding out what is in those blue bins. I'm hoping for rusty 8-speed chains!

dicky said...

No, I humiliated Carey. She said see is considering retirement. Shameful.

drew said...

for shame. we missed open duo 2nd place by 37 seconds. and it was all my fault.

wv: genurata

dicky said...

37 seconds?

Ouch.

You still got a mug though.

Stephanie said...

Those were cool mugs...

Jimmy Chuck Deane IV said...

4th place sucks, doesn't it?!

Patrick said...

Timmie's a BEAST. Come on Rich. You gonna let a Ginger kid beat you like that? To think... I idolized you man. Damn...