Monday, May 19, 2014

Happy Birthmas

This weekend I didn't get to race.  A combination of slow delivery times (bike bits, not babies) and the after effects of a pulled tooth (wisdom tooth, more like "just dumb" tooth) left me staying local and not shredding gravel in the hills of West Virginia.

My plan was to ride over to the Whitewater Center to help Marshall.  The morning of showed 50% chance of rains pretty much all day.  I grabbed the chance to sleep later having decided I would drive over.  As I was getting ready to go I figured I should grab the Glow Worm in case I needed to ride the course to Marshall or take care of anything else.  As I was leaving the neighborhood I KNEW I would kick myself for not riding if it indeed didn't rain.  Hey, if I was racing and it rained, I would get wet... so what is a little rain on the ride home (it really didn't look like it was going to rain prior to arriving at the race...).  So I turned around.

Much later start to ride over there than I had originally planned, but I hoped on the Silk Worm and took off.  Not only was my start later, but my distance was completely off.  I didn't really pay attention to how far the ride was the last time I rode over there (I could have done the math and figured out a rough estimate from my total mileage for that ride... but instead I hung my hat on a foggy idea that when I had googled the route it said 12 miles).  It wasn't 12 miles.  It was 17 miles.  So again, later arrival than intended.  I got there as the end of the first field was heading out.

My time in the woods was pretty uneventful - I saw TheMutt coming through on his second lap but I hadn't prepped the camera function on my wicked intelligent phone, so no picture for him, just a "howdy."  I helped a couple preriding racers with line choice, and worried about some "casual" riders as they came by... yikes.  Other than that, I encouraged racers - until the Cat 2 guys came through.  Then I was picking up racers.  6 crashes on the second lap for the Cat 2 guys.  5 clipped a "safety" pipe that was supposed to keep riders from tumbling down the hill (don't know why I didn't take a picture to illustrate the randomness of the post, and the craziness of the clipage), and one had a root grab his rear wheel.  All creshees were generally ok and popped up to continue their race.

There was one "fatality" from the crashing, and it wasn't even a rider who crashed.  It was a rider who was following behind a crashed rider.  He had to slow roll it up the roller, balancing as the downed rider scrambled to his feet.  This caused his chain to drop as he powered to get going again as the trail cleared.  His bash guard my protect from things on the outside, but caused his chain to wedge in pretty good against this bottom bracket.  He couldn't get it unstuck - from any angle... so he called it.  He had the BEST attitude about it as well, I was pretty amazed since it wasn't even his fault... "that's mountain bike racing" was his exclamation as he hiked out.

Ok... so that was a longer spiel than I expected.  Anyway, today I expect 3 packages from 3 different vendors with bike goodies.  It will be like my birthday/christmas in May.  Birthmas, Bmas, Xday, Christday (sounds a bit sacrilege), or however you want to call it.  Anyway, I'll share all the goodies with the class tomorrow.

* I didn't say howdy.  I don't say howdy.  I prolly said "hey".  That's more my style.

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