Monday, March 7, 2011

Race+"party like a rockstar"+brake lockup=DNF

i am pretty sure i know what to do and what not to do right before a race, so my behavior was very surprising to me. and just to set the record straight this was one of the best weekends ever, even though i dnf on the race.

so i sprung for the jacuzzi in the room seeing as i must have been anticipating my wild side to pop up this weekend
red rock race weekend started off fairly regular. we got there friday afternoon. checked in and went for a easy spin around the race course to check it out. got back to the room. soaked in the jacuzzi and went out to dinner.........

then.......
i had all intention to hit the bed early and rest up. but no.....

some how a white box with the word "you" was shoved on my head and these guys showed up.

after a wild night this was our motel room in the morning. i have no idea where all that sand came from.

this was just outside our room.
we looked surprising fresh, so we got our butts down to the race around 1030 am.
here is janets single speed trek 69er. a nice light weight bike that gets through the trails and is a blast to ride.
the I9 wheels with pink and black spokes. nice touch.
here my jet9 and "oilcan racer" number plate.
started my warmup as usual. nothing abby normal. i didn't really feel like i had legs, but was not that worried. the night before did me in, but was much fun and defiantly worth it.

5 minutes before the race line up my rear brake locks up. i mean not a little brake rubbing, it stops the bike as i am coasting downhill.

i get it over to ryan at the revolution tent. he says its probably cause the pads are worn out and super thin. ok. i go get a new set. we throw it on. they are tight and not seated in of course, but i figure they will break in on the downhill sections of the race.

i get to the line up and i am in the fourth row of my category of 45-50 guys. i think. ok no problem. half these guys can kick my ass and the other half are fairly fast. i plan on a quick start, get out ahead and see how it goes from there.

bang, we start off and everybody surges forward. about 500 yards into the fireroad we are all still mostly in one pack, but not really going the speed i want to be going. i get to the edge of the road and take off.




instantly half the guys standup and light a fire. the speed picks up two gears and i am a few guys from the leader.
right where i want to be.
problem is the pack is still accelerating. "click", one more gear up. we are really moving now, except for one thing. heartrate is climbing fast.
no problem, we will be hitting the first up hill and i plan on dropping people left and right.

one big problem. my speed is decreasing.....huh? my legs are burning. huh?
lets see....i "did" train for this...yes.
i have a fairly light bike...yes
i am not dreaming...i think so...

WTF?

guys are starting to get around me. i am trying harder, but riders are still coming around. i start to doubt my fitness and my training. one of the guys on my team passes me saying "dude you rear brake is smoking".
i think, yes the pad must be rubbing a little.

a few more passers and i am feeling like i got leadfilled legs.
the last guy to pass right before the first hill says "your rear rotor is glowing red".

i look down and through the smoke i can see it is kinda black/purple and orangey. not good.

i double my efforts and force myself up the hill thinking this will all pass after the first downhill. i just have to suffer until then.

nope. the rear brake started locking up to the point that if i stop pedaling it would make the rear tire skid.

made it up to the downhill section and i am right in the middle of the group and still losing places. on the way down guys were coasting and speeding up. i was pedaling as hard as i could and slowing down. to test how bad it was i stopped pedaling at the bottom of the hill at full speed and the rear tire skidded as soon as i stopped.

faced with the next uphill, i jumped off and looked at the still glowing rotor. of course i touched the brake caliper and burned my finger...ouch!!!! why did i do that?

could not get it to budge or release, so i jumped back on and continued my extreme workout. at the top of the hill i was exhausted, but i trudged on pedaling downhill without a rest.

as i rounded the start finish i had my water girl give me my second bottle. in the late start i managed not to give clear directions, so i got a heavy insulated bottle of plain water instead of a electrolyte/liquid food bottle.

hammering myself further i made it some how back across the flat and started the climb. this turned into a survival match. most of my group was long gone and the other groups leaders were starting to pass me now.
i limped up and down the hills until the last downhill where my legs started cramping. lack of electro's and just way too much leg torque effort to move the pedals did me in.
i threw in the towel and just barely got back and finished two laps to stop.
i felt sick, cramped, exhausted, overheated and was not making much sense.

as i got off the bike and pushed it, the rear tire was completely lock and dragged pityful behind it.
i just put it up on the bike rack and sat in the car for a while.

we got back to the room and i jump in the jacuzzi for some recovery cause my legs were toast.

went to a friends new fancy amazing house up the hill and then out to dinner. started to feel better, but not all the way.

the next day i disconnected the rear brake and we went to ride poppy mesa bear claw area. i could feel my legs were still like marshmallows, but we had much fun riding around.

janet is great to be with and very inspirational. she made me feel like i was on top of the world.
we saw other riders from the race enjoying the same trail too. these trails kinda wind around and have many interconnectings.
got back and made the drive up to SLC.

an amazingly great trip with no regrets. in fact one trip that will live in my memories as a high point in life.