13 September, 2012

First Cyclocross Of The Season

synchronizing the jump before the dismount was rough at the beginning...
It was a dark and stormy night (sorry, I'm plagiarizing); but it was the night before the event.  It rained for most of the day too.  Channel nine reported two inches of precipitation so when I asked my teammate if we were still on for racing that day he reported he didn't bring his bike.  I was relieved because I err on the side of being race lazy.  On the other hand, the weather was just ripe for cyclocross and in Denver we're headed for a new record of 72 days of 90 degree plus weather so the Fall-like preemptive, welcoming strike from Mother Nature was novel for my senses and a wee bit overdue.

By the time my workday ended the asphalty surfaces near my campus had mostly dried and I said to myself, "Self?  Why for art thou not racing?"  I couldn't think of a rational excuse so I mentally committed (51%) to haul butt out of my classroom, lube my chain (easy now!), give my Airborne a pre-flight check, and ensure all my gear was in one huge duffel a misanthropic, psychopathic, serial killer (or hockey player?)  could be proud of.  Living in the ghetto, I needed about 45 minutes for my commute to Golden, leaving me with no time to warmup after registering myself.  In fact, my homey G, Kenny, had to pin my number on my bottom right side for me (not my actual bottom, mind you).

Like a NOVICE, I wore shoes that were not easy to clip in and out.  This cost me dearly at the start when I was suffering like a Cat 6 trying to get my left foot into my ATAC's.  Cost me about 10 places when all 50 of  us log jammed onto the singletrack.  Once on the singletrack I was a jostling fiend, passing whenever I could but not short cutting the trail.  Apparently one person took umbrage to my calculated passing and we were body checking each other for the line (I had the inertia, he was a dick).  I passed him on a left hand sweeper, and he took it a bit further and bumped me non-friendly-like on the right hand sweeper.  I deviated so far off course three people passed me.  Aww shite, I said to myself, "Self?  You gonna let that spandex wearing scrub do you like that brah?"  I wanted to retaliate and give him the supreme body check kara-te style whenever that opportunity presented itself but he was non-affiliated and I was flying the colors.  Natural Grocers would probably not like hearing that their representative was doing something unbecoming of the orange and black (yes, they are also Halloween's colors).  This part of the course, the mud is oppressive and turning-let alone passing-is difficult, so I bid my time to go for the pass at either the obstacles or  the one straight away before the start/finish.  Lo and behold I see my body checking friend and when I pass him all stealth-like I bust an ATARI lane change on him so that he has to brake and adjust his line as I cut him off (oops, sorry brah!) right before the downhill, muddy, right-hand sweeper leading into a stiff bump.  I'm dieseling like Beelzebubba at this point and there's no way in hell I'm gonna let this guy mentally draft off of me or hear me breathing from that expenditure of energy (i.e. burnt one of my matches) as I roll past him.  Y-chromosome redemption baby! 

So in my throttle-running-wide-open, diesel mode, breathing like Cyrano De Bergerac with a deviated septum and a wicked underbite, snot dribbling from my nares, while swallowing some choice soil samples (2012 is going to be a good, vintage year for mud!) I start picking off people.  I pick off my teammate and probably another dozen or so people.  I think I'm the first one on a (29er) mountain bike to finish.  It took a while to synchronize my jump with my heavy-arsed 29er with her 2.1 tubeless tires with my saddle bag dangling off my seat rails.  Needless to say, Penelope performed admirably with nary a complaint.  Also, my results are not yet posted on-line so suffice to say I can neither confirm nor deny my awesomeness (or lack thereof) from today's anaerobic endeavors.  Let's just say I was a pack finisher for this one.

Okay, my first one done and next Wednesday I'ma bring my correct shoes and an elbow pad for my body checking homeboy/competitor..

Now it's time to cleanup, grade, and to spend some quality time with a quality person.

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