Tuesday, April 6

2021 6 Hours of Warrior Creek

Does there need to be a preamble to a race I've done for the past twelve years?  Dunno.

Member how I said a lot of the duo teams will finally get the chance to have an even split of three laps a piece (instead of 3/2) with the new timing rules and shorter course?

I member.

And even though I halped come up with the new format in order to be all COVID-protocol friendly and stuff, it didn't dawn on me till late last week that I couldn't be more wrong.  The race would have a hard stop at six hours (from your staggered start) as opposed to a "last lap must begin before 3:40PM..."  Any lap finished after the six hour mark would not count.

Which meant that when I was supposed to be relaxing Friday night, I was looking at course maps trying to figure out what part of the course was cut out, wagering what about "twelve or thirteen miles" the new and previous course truly is and was, looking at previous lap times and average speeds, and hurting my head because it was either going to be a squeaker or nothing to think about at all.

So, aside from Nick's tires needing sealant added to them in the pits and his drooper post not returning correctly (a problem fixed with a pocket knife) before the race even started and me forgetting to pack my Wahoo...


I've gotten used to having an tachometer to meter my efforts.  I was a little concerned that I'd ridden my mountain bike mebbe a little too much in the week leading up to the race, and I knew if I could see what was going on... I could work around it?


Anyways, Nick didn't cut himself fixing his drooper but did manage to blow sealant on the side of my car, so I'd say we weren't doing too poorly.

Line up for the start with the 50 Plus Duo, 40 Plus Duo, and the (only) other Single Speed Duo team.  Instead of a mass start and fighting for position into the single track with 150 other people over a few miles of rolling road, I only have to worry about sixteen to twenty other guys with less than a half mile to get to the woods. 

I manage to spin my way to about mid-pack, watching the fasties get away, whilst being the tail end of a choo choo train stuck behind one guy... you know... that guy.  Eventually, that guy gives way to one rider at a time, and probably about five miles in (who knows? not me), I've got clear trail.

Big fan of the staggered start, I must say.

I'm having a hard time "pacing" myself tho.  Without seeing my heart rate, I'm pretty sure I'm going a little too hard... and who knows if I even have the goods after spending too much time wearing myself out all week?  I'm still fantasizing about us getting six laps... until I cross the finish line at 59 minutes and change.  It's not rocket science.  We will fail.  It's of some comfort that most will be failing alongside us.

Nick goes out and I eat 1.5 slices of pizza and wonder how many calories I really need when I ate breakfast at 6:00AM and it's now five hours later and I burned who knows how many calories because I don't have a beep boop device on my bars to tell me?

Nick comes in and I go out and it's pretty apparent that the number of calories I burnt is all.  All the calories.  I feel crispy around the edges.  I left my emergency bag of sour gummy bears at home, so I don't even have a source of real calories in my jersey pocket.  Even my half full just-in-case bottle of CarboRocket is just an electrolyte mix, so if I bother to take my hands off the bars to gulp at it, I'm only gonna get about fifty calories.  

I'm dumb.

Suffer through that lap, and tag off to Nick who tells me that we have a decent gap back to second place... and I decide to gorge myself.  Drink that Coke and inhale a butt-ton of pizza and drink electrolyte stuff and relax.

Nick comes in and I go out... knowing that the other team isn't gonna be able to make a fifth lap... but I kinda still want one anyways... because mebbe it will be fun?  Also mebbe we wanna know how we'd stack up in the Open Duo category for shites and giggles?

Somehow, my just for fun taking it easy lap is only two minutes slower than my second lap, and we end up first in the Single Speed Duo and an imaginary fourth in the Open Duo category.

Bryan had to bounce because at least one of us had grown up stuff to do, but thanks to someone's incredible green screen skills, we have our podium!

Dunno if the single speed duo will be a thing in 2022.  I'm sure COVID affected the overall attendance numbers, because COVID is still here, and 6WC was only able to re-open registration with such short notice that a lot of people had already made Easter plans.  I'm hoping people liked the staggered start enough that it might be implemented in the future.  It sure was the nicest first lap I've ever done, and I can only imagine that the majority of riders who aren't stoked on the usual 13 mile conga line found this to be a pleasant change.

I'll be back no matter what, because it's what I do... so whatever.

BTW: Only three teams and one solo rider made six laps, doubling the usual number of racers that got the pleasure from last year. Next year, mebbe I spend focus more on packing and less on calculating...

I'm out till late next week so not ded.

No comments: