The MNMBS race at Mt Kato, Mankato, is always hot...sometimes muddy, but always hot. More on that later.
Leading up to the 2nd MNMBS I did the Thrus Night Buck race. The Penn team pulled of the amazing feat of a last minute reroute around a new 8 foot irrigation ditch that appeared on the hill that day. The race was short at only 40 min but still had 1000 feet of climbing in that period...OUCH!
Saturday was a warm day and I kind of forgot to take it easy. Between washing cars, chasing kids, laying sod, taking Tegan mountain biking (yeah, on 2 wheels=), and a brief 40 min spin alone, I was anything but rested for the impending warmest race (heck, even ride) of the year by far the next day. Oh well, so it goes.
Tegan's first 2 wheeled mountain biking ...we hit up Murphy Hanrehan on Saturday
Sunday I felt lethargic going down to Kato, but once I started pedaling I could tell that I didn't totally waste myself the previous day. The warm weather suits me and my legs always feel better. It was just about 90 Sunday in Mankato, so there was plenty of suffering to go around. I just put my head down at the start and set a high tempo. The start was the least painful one this season, and I kept it below my threshold but was still able to gap the field. Kato is a near perfect race course with a long ski hill starting climb to sort things out followed by fast singletrack, twisty singletrack, switch backs, a couple places to launch, and some gnarly rooty chutes. I kept on it for 4 out of 5 laps growing my lead the whole time. I sat up a bit on the last lap, as cramps started to ping. Overall, I was pleased with my fitness, which seems to be coming along but more pleased that I had limited cramping in the hot weather. Usually the first hot weather race puts me in the hurt bucket more than this one did.
Its a race AND I get to launch a little? How can I pass that up? Sweet!
Still not down=) I am no downhiller so this is plenty of air time for me.
With over 400 racers (lots of them staying for much of the afternoon), families, friends, food, and a beautiful day, we couldn't have asked for a better race and venue. Saying we were due for weather like this, well, that is stating the obvious=)
The only time I spend without at least one of my 2 shadows is on the bike or after 8:30 pm....I like that though=)
Equipment note: I continue to be blown away by the XR0 Bonti tires for hard pack racing (race day only tire and not good for sharp rocks or mud/wet). Looking at them, they simply should NOT grip like they do, but they are like Velcro! I was really able to lay the bike over on Sunday w/o loosing grip. I wish I would have converted to these sooner...
All these pics are just screenshots from Dana's gallery. She does an amazing job photographing the MNMBS!