With the eyes of the world watching, we embarked on a quest to polish off almost 50 miles of singletrack out at the famous Eastwood Park. Matt "Kuske" Kurke and I were co-directors for the race and also heavy favorites. You see, Eastwood has an extremely tight course that a rider with experience on the trail has a distinct advantage. Also, Matt and I have raced against each other here many Tuesday nights and this year we have been the most evenly matched as we have ever been. Usually we are separated by a few seconds at the finish of a time trialed lap.
A prerace meeting and a Le man's start had things kicking off our day. You can see here I was answering the question, "Where is the beach?".
The second we hopped on our bikes I realized that my body was screaming loudly that it wished I had done some type of warm up. Kuske was killing it on the front and I struggled to stay on Chris "Top Chris SL" Fisher's wheel who was on Kuske's.
About 75 feet into the singletrack I managed to bang my pedal (breaking one side of it) on a stump and burp out the air in my front tire on another well placed stump. So I limped back to the feed zone, grabbed a pump, and gave chase from the back of the pack.
After the first lap (of seven) Kuske was off the front and had already put 3 1/2 minutes into me. Knowing how closely matched we are out there I knew it would be difficult to make up, but I just kept my head down and kept going, picking off spots as we worked our way up. Eventually on lap 3 the Superfly and I made our way into 2nd place. I never felt great out there and finally realized that I simply had too much food in me from the morning and I was still trying to take more in. With 2 laps left I just stopped eating and only drank. Those two laps saw Kuske have the opposite problem and he started to slow.
You can stand just about anywhere at Eastwood and see 3 different sections of trail. So with that Matt and I knew when we saw each other we had an idea of how far apart we were. Well, on the last lap it was recognized by both of us that the gap was coming down quickly. With trail running out, Matt was able to push his calorie deprived self fast enough so I couldn't catch him. After 4 hours and 10 minutes Kuske ended up taking the win by 95 seconds with myself coming in second. In a display of home field advantage, locals Jon Finnoff and Mark "Tri Guy" Carey snagged 3rd and 4th. Chris locked in 5th place for the day.
Special shout out goes to my Baby's Momma and her Rochester BFF. Together they rode 5 laps in 6 hours to take on the 3rd place prize.
Congrats to Kuske and all the other racers out there. And a special thanks to the Homeless guy on the course that shared his lunch with the racers. Also thanks to our volunteers as well!!
Now get back to work.