I decided to go out and do the 8 hour race self supported at the Salsa 24. I rode for 7.5 hours before I called it "good enough," as I was getting tired and had accomplished my goal of testing the endurace racing waters. I am unsure of the exact numbers, but I was told that the lap was 7.5 miles long and ~1500-1600 feet of climbing putting the race total for me at 16000+ feet of climbing and ~80 miles.
I felt strong through about 6 hours, and then I started to fade a little. This is better than I expected given my rides in the summer don't get much longer than the XC races on the weekends...many are significantly shorter like Buck Races or casual rides w/ friends and family. I only cramped twice on Saturday and both times were on the Manhandler climb (bottom to top up the ski hill), so my nutrition plan of Salted Nut Rolls, Gu Brew, Gu, Honey Stinger waffles, and endurolytes worked just fine. I even had to stop and pee once, which was a good sign!
Today, I am still a little tired (even my Madone felt slow on the commute in) and am intersted to see how long this recovery will take. The TT at Murphy on Wed will tell me somthing. After that it is off to Madison to visit my Nephew and attend a benefit for him on Sunday (i.e as I mentioned last entry, no Border Battle unfortunately).
Equipement wise, I went with the Bonntrager XR2 tires at Afton. It is a more durable, versatile, and slightly heavier tire. It worked well because I didn't have to worry about traction in the slippery first laps or side wall cuts in the later laps when my riding got a little sloppier.