Here is an update on my life and thoughts lately in short bursts:
-I knocked up the wife again. Due date Oct. 15th, not finding out the sex until then. My boys are strong swimmers. I guess I need to ride more.
-Abi wants to "race my bike". Buck Hill racers better watch out!
-My dog won't stop licking my arm as I type this.
-The hypocrisy with Obama and Libya is laughable. Along with that the divisiveness in politics, it is getting really old. Every political side has something to add to this country, but they would rather just yell at each other and nit pick. They are like a bunch of junior high kids. For the record, I am glad they are helping the people of Libya from their own government.
-Gas prices have been gone up. Along with that you have the self righteous pricks cheer because "I never drive a car because I ride my bike everywhere". Good for you, but that is your choice and wishing ill on others because of it is sad.
-Been busy this weekend. Chiseling pavement for a sump pump install, refinishing hardwood floors, and half the riding I wanted.
-Ragnarok 105 (105 mile gravel race) is coming in a few weeks and I am not feeling all that confident. Frankly, I question how good of shape I am in, but we'll find out more soon. I would really like to "tri-peat" the race, but I also would like a lot of things that I am not getting. Bike is almost ready, carbon Superfly with some new changes to set up that I need to try. Ek, it is lighter than yours:)
-The licking is getting really old.
-With my life as a stay at home Dad I have happen to see a few shows on tv that day workers do not. Just to let you know Tyra Banks annoys me with her stupidity and hypocrisy every time I have seen her on TV. She is so flipping annoying, but what is worse is she has such a strong following.
-Going on the TV theme, I tend to like syndicated tv shows. I discovered "Scrubs" this way. It happens that it is on when I put Abi down and I eat my lunch. The following shows I did not like until they went into syndication; "90210", "Seinfeld", "King of Queens", and "Scrubs". I am sure there are more that I can't think of.
-Are you still reading all this stuff?
-I really don't watch much TV at all, but I am on a roll here so stay with me. Up at the cabin we get a channel called "Retro TV". It often times has cool old shows like "Night Rider", "The A-Team", and "Magnum PI". I wish we had that channel locally, minus the old black and white westerns.
-Stupid dog keeps licking, errrr.
-If you are going to be punched in at work you should probably stop reading blogs.
Well, down there in Decorah, IA those crazy cats self appointed themselves as the holder for the World Championship Fat Bike Race. Me with my itching desire to get in some fun in the snow and with $500 to the first guy across the line I figure the free entry and cost of gas for the 90 minute drive was more than worth the fun.
The conditions in the area had not been ideal. Leading up to the race there had been a rash of warm weather and little snow to the point that snowmobiles had not been allowed on the trails for the past week or 2, leaving the trail very hard to distinguish. Trevor Rockwell got to the front right away and I took up the caboose in our 5 person front group (Me, Trevor, Hollywood, Ben Shockey, and Ezra Taylor). My forgotten inhaler and lack of warm up and me apprehensive for the first 30 minutes, despite th use of my new breathing mask (more on that in another post). Riding next to a river in the trees the trail was easily visible and we plunged down hills only to plug back up the other side. Soon we were crisscrossing fields and weaving through patches of trees. This is where the trail became almost completely unrecognizable. Twice either Hollywood or I got to the front looking to increase the pace a tad and twice we went the wrong way. Thank goodness Trevor was there or we would have been wandering the Iowa countryside for days. Action shots stolen from here. The start.
At some point the front group got down to H-Wood, Trevor and I as we headed through the checkpoint. We would soon hit the "snow dunes" on a flat straight part of trail. This trail had only seen a little foot traffic, but plenty or drifting and icing over, leaving us a very difficult task of trying to ride through. Out onto the a gravel road and our group of 3 was now 4 with the addition of Ezra and his modified fat Big Dummy.
Coming into town for the checkpoint. I am the one in the Darth Vader costume.
Because of the COMPLETE shut down of the rest of the snowmobile trails, our last 1/3 of the race was almost all gravel, unbeknownst to me. The style of power output taxed the cardio system more and my breathing had a hard time keeping up. I was not a fan of this and thought we had more sled trail to cover soon. My plan WAS to make a move on the next snowmobile trail as it seemed that is where I was riding best. Up over a small gravel rise Trevor attacked with H-wood on his tail. My breathing had gotten ramped up and I chased down the backside. My der must have jambed because I could not get in the smallest 2 cogs in the back and we were facing a very long slight downhill. The hill was steep enough that I needed the extra gearing to pedal, but not steep enough to coast and keep up. Ezra passed me by and caught up with the lead 2 riders.
As we went down the long twisty descent the top three smelled my blood in the water and stayed on the gas as I watched them fade away out of site. Resigned to getting 4th I plugged along until around a corner I saw a chance. Off the gravel was our last piece of snow trail up a larger switchback hill. A little lay into the gas and I made up a lot of ground by the top of the climb. With the finish in site we were all laying it out. I was able to pass Ezra and closed some on H-Wood, finishing in 3rd place. Trevor took the well deserved win.
With 3rd I got me a sweet trophy. I realized something; over the last few years I have had the privilege of obtaining so pretty cool and unique awards. So here is a pic of the bling from the Pugs Worlds, and then a shot of the award I snagged at the Tuscobia 75 miler snow race (all modeled by a future female pro mountain biker). Literally, these kind of awards would be a driving force for me to return to these races and compete.
Thanks to the guys in for Decorah for doing your part to keep mountain biking cool. See you at your TT in late April! Oh, and thanks to 9:ZERO:7 for making a bike that leaves me with no excuse not to do well!
Pugs World Championship 3rd place. Tuscobia 75 miler 1st place.
I was raised in the "hood", self-taught to survive on scraps of old inner tubes and changing bike tires with my teeth. Life is a struggle for me not to be another statistic that so many become after being raised in a caucasion middle class family. I now am a husband, bike mechanic, land lord, stay at home dad, and wannabe mountain bike racer.