*****we interrupt your scheduled bloggage for a test of the Brendan Broadcast System*****
Warning- this was not written by Mary! We’ve switched roles for the weekend, racer, blogger; it’s all me this time around, give or take a little mascara. So I’m here to report on my first twelver… er, 12 hour solo. bust out the popcorn & EZ Cheese, it’s a long one!
The 12 hours of Temecula has been my goal for a few weeks, because of it I got on the bike more, ate better, and maintained a general buzz. Best of all, my “racer appetite” is back, which has been great. I love eating.
In the days leading up to the race I found myself having to deal with a virus that had managed to squat somewhere between my bronchials & throat. No riding. Felt pretty crusty all week, to the point that I was up late Friday debating the wisdom of starting at all. Add to that my beloved Trauco was upset with me, her drivetrain was hammered after after a “hike-in-cycling-shoes” outing the previous weekend. Long story short I “fixed” the derailleur with a hammer & pliers, and bled the rear brake the night before.
Fast forward to Saturday morning: Multivitamins on an empty stomach. Coffee gut. Great sunrise. Mary loaded the iPod for me.
Mary & Todd set up the pit while I went about my pre-race business– gabbing, schmoozing, catching-up, & tire-kicking. Jason called everyone together to the pre-race meeting. I hadn’t filled out the forms so he made a public example of me; thanks… I was “that” guy.
The registration forms had different categories, sport, expert, pro, etc. I’m a “pro” when it comes to eating ice cream, so I marked that one down.
Lineup- jitters, grab-assing, pondering how long it will take before it sucks.
Gun goes off- as if by automation, I’m in the big ring. Going faster than I should, which I know because I’m rubbing elbows with the fast guys. At least the guys in the helmets with no vents are behind me. Cool!
First big climb & I’m starting to feel it. Settle in, I think to myself, we might have to ride the whole time! Brett, Phil’s son, is riding Strong with me (pun intended, it’s his last name) and likes my pace. We decide to keep a moderate pace for a few laps then see how we’re feeling. We run into Idy Dave from time to time while he’s gettin’ his suffer on.
A few consistent laps went by, Mary & Todd (and Phil & Linda) kicked butt in the pit each time. I even asked for a few far-fetched items just to see what they’d do. How would you like your caffiene? Salt? Sugars? They took care of everything, short of the undercarriage lube, which is a DIY job.
Then I ran out of juice. A low calorie lap goes by & I’m hurting, plus I’ve got Elvis Leg on the climbs & the endurolytes aren’t doing their magic. I limped intot he pit battle damaged, the world spinning & alert lights on my internal cockpit flashing “danger!” I promptly gorged myself on pb&j, banana, yogurt, chicken broth, V8, Sun Chips, and espresso.
Predictably, my stomach hurt on the next lap. Bad. Walked a lot, prayed for flatulence… I wondered if
Mary managed to get me some ginger candy in the mean time, which helped a lot. Still, that lap cost me a lot of time. All of a sudden I felt better & started riding hard. For the remainder of the race I was able to push the big ring on the moderate climbs & railed the flat twisties. The “boneshaker” descent made my left hand go numb.. still is even now as I write this. Never again will I race rigid. (just like I said after the ‘Puff)
Night fell & my laps were still going well. On lap #8 I pondered Tri-tip sandwiches & beer, and rationalized all the great reasons I’d cooked up for calling it quits. Sometime around 7:30 I sauntered in, proud of myself & ready for hoppy beer… denied!
Lesson learned here- if you’re gonna quit early, go slow so as to preclude any opportunity to get another lap in. Mary & Todd did the “good cop, bad cop” thing and gave me a quick push back out into the cold, dark, beerless racecourse. One more glory lap, and it was actually the best one! Rode hard, had fun, came close to crashing a couple times. Turned in another 1:20 & called it good.
The sandwich was awesome.
Thanks to everyone who helped out at the race & sent me the good juju! Also, it was great meeting Jeni & Matt, Scott (hopefully we’re riding this weekend) and it was nice seeing all the SoCal homies– Dave, Chad, all the CycoPath guys & of course the Ranoas.
I’ll add photos as soon as I learn how.