Monday, September 04, 2006

Wild weekend at Maplelag

What a fun and hard weekend! Jen and I left for Maplelag, the destination for a TT, Short Track (STXC), and MNSCS XC#8, around 4 pm on Friday. After a stop at the slowest Subway ever, we arrived around 9 pm. We basically went to bed, as I had the TT at 10am.
TT: I was lucky enough to be at the front of the field because of when I registered, but I was unlucky enough to have Doug and Dan Swanson behind me by 30 and 60 seconds respectively. Darn…if the was any Time Trialist I didn’t want behind me it was Doug. He was top 10 in the Nature Valley Grande Pre Prologue (Pro National road stage race in the Cities here) and can put out some mad watts. Anyway, the race really hurt and I held Doug off. However, Dano put the hammer down and beat me by 9 seconds. I was second and Doug was 3rd by a few seconds.
STXC: The race started at 5:30 so I had some time to eat and rest after the TT. The field was big at about 20-25 and very strong…most of the MN fast guys were on the front line. The laps were just shy of 2 minutes, so we ended up doing 10 of them. The turns were very slick - not mud pits but greasy. From the gun, Doug took off. We followed for a couple laps. Jeff played it cool at the start, but eventually, it was he and Doug 20-30 seconds of the front followed by Justin and then Chris and I about 5-10 seconds back. I was riding cross-eyed until they said that we were on our last lap. Chris had slipped out on a corner so I was safely up on him. I sat up just a little to make sure I didn’t crash out on any of the last corners. Fisher came in behind me for 5th.
XC: Wow! I had a bad race! It wasn’t because of bad legs …they felt good/fine. The course is full of challenging tight and twisty singletrack. There are some open XC ski trails, but 75% of the time was spent in the woods. I had NO handling skills…I hate to make excuses – I almost never do but feel justified this time – however, my braking was way out of whack and thus I just couldn’t find a groove mentally=( What I did wrong was that I raced the 9.9 (with disc brakes) for the TT and STXC and switching to the fuel (rim brakes) for the XC. I never switched this close to an event before because of accidents/mistakes made in training when switching between bikes. Basically what happens is my front brake modulation goes through the crapper because of the difference in pressure on the brake lever needed to stop, and I definitely needed perfect control on this course….sorry, enough whinning. I was riding so bad that I had the Swanson brothers, Sam O, among others making fun of me afterwards for bouncing off trees=) One way or another, I will be riding a dual suspension bike with discs next year! I ended up 4th on the day with Jeff, Paul, and Chris in front of me.
Omnium: The combination of the three event times were used to determine the overall champion of the weekend. This is crazy, but Paul won followed by Chris and then me. No, it isn’t crazy that Paul or Chris beat me because they are very fast….what is crazy is that Paul beat Chris by 8 seconds, and Chris and I were separated by 1 SECOND! After 3 events, 9 seconds separated the 3 of us=) Wild, but a good result for our Velo Rochester team.

This is getting long, so I will stop now. I want to thank Jay for putting on a great event. The whole weekend ran flawlessly.

Next up is Chequamegon in a couple weeks….
Here are some Pics:

Blur of Chis in STXC Me on "the climb" in the STXC..pretty steep (photos from

On the lake drop in the XC (this one from too)

Getting out of the lake drops takes some power

Top 3 in the omnium

Paul is sure proud of his ribbon...


samo said...

I know exactly what you are talking about switching bikes & having trouble in the singletrack.It happened to me at WORS Cup.I used my full for the time trial,hardtial in the short track & full again for the cross country.You would think I would be used to it going into singltrack,because I rode it the day before,Heck no.I was getting so frusrated because I was hitting every rock & picking the worst lines through the singletrack going down 3 times!!.I eventually fond the lines after a lap & a half.But I think it was also me not riding any singletrack with it,I always used my full.But anyway great job to both you & Chris.It was fun hanging out with you guys.
What are you guys doing next weekend?

Jay Richards said...

Thanks for supporting the race weekend BM and making the racing exciting. Good luck at Cheq. For sure you have a top 10 in you if not higher.