Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Short Track, 1. Helmet, 0.

Once summer rolls around, the event that makes Mondays bearable is Short Track Mountain Biking out at PIR. For seven Mondays this summer, we converge upon the dirt to make total fools of ourselves. Sort of a warm-up for cyclocross.

Last year I raced five of the six races and finished eleventh in four of those races. I have no goals for short track other than to not finish eleventh. I would've also like to have made "not walking around all summer with bruises and dirt rash on my legs," but that would have been an epic fail after only 15 minutes on the course.

I took a total digger on the second pre-ride lap. Got going too fast on a bike that I hadn't ridden since last summer and which, duh, doesn't corner or handle like my road bike. On a set of mini-moguls, caught a bit too much air and when I landed my weight was too far over the front of the bike. Over the top I went. Took most of the impact on my right shoulder and the right side of my head.

I lay there stunned for about 15 second, my ears ringing. Without even looking, I could tell that I was bleeding from my right knee and shoulder. Sigh.

Once I got the gore cleaned up, German pointed out that I should probably check my helmet. Sure enough, it is not only mottled on the outside, but cracked in two places. F&$K. The helmet was new and not the cheapest piece of equipment. He let me borrow his for the race.

So, the race. The Cat 2 Women race with the singlespeed riders and one or two male masters' groups. Makes for a bit of chaos. I had a crappy start because I didn't care about where I lined up and ended up in the back row. Then I was personally responsible for a large bottleneck when I had to unclip while trying to sneak around smaller bottleneck (Yeah, Heidi, I'm owning was me).

Then it was four laps of chasing. What mediocre handling skills I have started to re-emerge two laps in and my leftover road fitness helped me keep a pretty high tempo for the whole ride.

The race was pretty uneventful. Didn't crash and mostly rode alone when I wasn't passing people. Did have some words with some douchebag in the singlespeed race who seemed to think that I had to give up the good line and get out of his way when he was passing me. Then proceed to reach out and try and push me off that good line. I will find out who you are, asshole. You are lucky that my main priority after the race was cleaning up my leg and not shoving my muddy shoe up your backside.

Some pictures of the racing are here and here.

I was the first under-35 Cat 2 to finish and think I finished forth overall. There were two or three over-35 racers that were long gone by the time I worked my way through the main pack. One is a woman in my morning class and the other is a friend from cyclocross. I'm going to try and line up with them next week and see how long I can hold on before I wreck into something.

Off to Sunriver for the weekend. I'll be crit racing tonight and Friday night and getting in some Bend singletrack in between.


Mikey said...

Homegirl is looking FIT!

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