Posted on 7:38 AM by Schottler
My plan was to put in some endurance/tempo paced rides for the next couple weeks to burn some holiday cookies and enjoy myself. Last year I gained about 10 lbs in a month from not riding and eating a million cookies... which lead to trying to lose it through most of my base mile period, not fun. Breaking even is the plan this year. I even got in a fun near 6 hour ride with Pam Hinton and Mike Bruzina on Friday, with no plan of racing state cx. Saturday night Butthead asked why I wasn't racing, I had no excuse, so I thought what the hell, I can just have fun in the mud.
That was my goal on Sunday, have fun playing in the mud and see what would happen. Mike Weiss was kind of enough to loan me his set of 303's with Challenge Limus tires. I also had some friends working the pit for me, unfortunately there was no water, they were kind enough to pick the mud off while I was out on the other bike.
I started on the last row and managed to get in the first corner in last place, neato. "Have fun, have fun, have fun." A few motorcycle sounds and a lap later, I was in the front group with Dan Miller and Travis Donn. I felt alright, my legs were sore and hurting from the long week of training, but I usually ride the mud pretty well. I stayed with them for a few laps and then got tape caught in my cassette, which required to me to take out my wheel and I lost at least 30 seconds, as Butthead flew by. No one in sight behind me, chase mode. Low back was hurting and my legs didn't really have much. I then passed Dan running with his bike, with another failed derailleur. Here is the front group for the first few laps, Dan, Travis, and me. (Photo credit to Jason Watkins)
With about 3 laps to go my low back pain went away and I got in a groove and started flying. Casey Saunders seemed to be having some bike problems as we were lapping him, I was coming up on him fast, and I didn't say which side I was passing him on, since I didn't really know until I was on him. He swerved over to where I was going and I slammed in to his bars pretty hard. I went flying over the bars in to a mud puddle and he went down too. Whoops, sorry Casey. Lost another 15ish seconds and was soaking wet and cold the rest of the race. I was still making up time, but not enough to overcome my issues. Butthead won again, Travis Donn had a freaking awesome race in 2nd, and I finished 3rd, only 20ish seconds behind Butthead.
I am happy, I didn't have any expectations, didn't prepare at all for the race, and didn't break any bike parts. I guess it is possible for me to race for fun.