Laddies Loppet up at Maplelag is the highlight of my family's racing year. We simply love it up there and with Tegan being on 2 wheels we told him he can go "anywhere but the lake" on his own, which was a new experience of freedom for him.
While I really wanted to do well at the stage race this year, my preparation was less than ideal for the very short high intensity events with an 8 hour and 50 mile race being the previous 2 XC races I had done. My only bout with intensity since the 8 hour race was a TT at Murphy Hanrehan.
That all said I felt reasonably good in the cool weather TT, but was bested by Doug Swanson who was going really fast (top secret cross training I am told=). In the STXC, I led it out and should not have. With temps only in the low 60's my legs were rioting after the summer of heat and they locked up after the fast lead out. It went from full power to engine misfiring in about 30 seconds. I should have sat back and let them warm into the race, but I didn't and was forced to drop back to the chase group. Doug rode away impressively again. I sat on for a bit, recovered and used Jake Richards 2nd to last lap attack as a a catapult to second place.
The XC course was partly new this year with 3 miles of my favorite stuff: non-IMBA (i.e. difficult, punchy, tight, demanding) full on rock'n singletrack. Maplelag is hands down the most technical course in the MNMBS series now. I think only Spirit Mt, if it ever returns, could give it a run for its money. In order to win the stage race, I had to give it my best and hope that there was one person between Doug and I. I DID ease into this race and it benefited me later as I was able to keep nearly identical lap times for the 2 ten mile laps. The final placings put me at the top of the Stage Race podium where I have stood second fiddle for a number of years to TJ and Jason Sager. There is an XC video recap here and a STXC video recap here.
After the race Tegan and I hit the Richards jump park pump track area where he was rocking the rollers. He can't seem to get enough of the "bumps" as he calls them. He wanted to know why he could "fly" (i.e get air). I told him to give it a little time.
Sunday night was filled with food, drink (Fat Tire on TAP!), and merry times by the camp fire. Jen headed to bed early, as she ran 17 miles that morning in Prep for her 3rd TC Marathon, so I was left to talk bikes and hockey by the fire... =) Thanks Richards family for hosting us!!!!!!
Next on the life agenda, is to have a weekend at home. However, the weeks are still full with Tues Night CX racing, 2x hockey (by the fire at Maplelag Jon Richards helped me decide that I should go ahead and spend too much on some Supreme one80 skates...I can't wait to try them), and Tegan starting "pretty" (read Pre) school. Then later this fall, I will likely be shipped of to China for 3 weeks of work and with weekend 2-wheeled exploration.
Life will slow down eventually right?