This weekend, myself, Ben (bro), Ben (Portilla), and Fisher set out to win. We didn't, but we did ride about 320 miles off road.
Everyone on the team did their best. The course was FLAT....PAN FLAT! Nothing like we are used to here in Minnesota or out in Col (for Ben P). The singletrack was rocky, rooty, twisty, and super cool. Between single tracks sections was flat double track.
We didn't win because of several things in no particular order.
1. We weren't feeling great. No one on the team was anywhere near a peak. Were weren't going bad, but we weren't going good.
2. The team that beat us was really strong, especially on a power course like that. Doug, a 2 time Cheqaumegon winner probably had it in the 44-11 on all the flats=) Jesse was awesome out there. Discounting the first lap (they skipped a section of the singletrack) Jesse and I were the only ones to pull sub 58 minute laps. Brian and Marko were consistently strong the entire time.
3. I had a rough night. In fact, it put the win out of reach. My handle bar light fell off 4 times on my first night lap because my mount was broken. It was a borrowed light and I didn't want to loose it, so I pocketed it and ended up riding the lap with only a small head lap. On the second lap, I was rolling through the rocks and hit one kinda hard, which burped my tire and popped a spoke out of my beloved Mavic SLRs....don't worry it WASN'T the red spoke=) I ended up having to put a tube in when it wouldn't seal...oh and my CO2 was acting up so I had to wait for someone with a pump to come by. The whole ordeal took more than 1o minutes. After fixing the flat and dealing with the spoke so I could finish the lap, I even took time to pee. Heck, it was 2:30 am, I was in the middle of the woods, I had Stan's gu everywhere, and I had just put us out of contention. What could a nice leisurely pee hurt? =)
I can't thank our support staff, Jen, My Dad, and Ben P's parents enough. They did their best to force feed us when we looked tired and demoralized. We couldn't have done it without them.
Next year we will be back if it is the National Championships...otherwise we will probably opt for Afton. For now, I think one 24 hour race a year is enough. Ask me in a few days if I am doing 24 of Afton.