Sunday, October 11, 2009
Iron Cross lite.
12:15 start. Whoot! I may want to start racing the Masters's Elites just for the start time. Probably not, tho.
After a night of rain and a dreary morning I had breakfast with my wife and 2 girls; nice change from the earlier starts, plus IC is less than 45 minutes away.
Got to see the end of the Cat 4 race and rooted fellow Hupster on, Gary Sterner. Also cheered Kevin Dillard on who squeeked out a photo finish. Took the long walk back to the car and got ready after depositing the pit bike in the pit. Got ready, warmed up, had a good chat with Bob Perna who parked across from me and Thor, who parked next to me.
We lined up in what was a combined Masters race although they would score us 35+, 45+, and 55+.
As the bell went off Thor, who was right in front of me, unclipped, stopping both of us. We went hard to catch up to the pack; I even passed him a bit until we made it into the turns. He passed me there, and tho I never lost sight of him, I never was able to catch him. I saw Jay Downs ahead of me and he became my "carrot". I knew I could catch him. After about 3ish laps I finally did, on the uphill barrier. I kept seeing Thor, Kevin Breckinmaker, and Perna ahead of me but I just couldn't catch them. I wound up getting lapped with maybe 1/2 lap to go, fighting off Nunzio at the finish line. Had I known it was him, I probably would've let it go since I wasn't really racing him (or Perna, for that matter). All in all, I felt pretty good. I wasn't too sure how I'd do, since I had been fighting a cold all week and really didn't sleep well the night before. 18th out of 26 starters over all; 5th out of 9 45+ racers. Closest to the podium I've ever been.
As for the course; I don't know why it is but this race doesn't get a lot of racers; it should. It's a great course with a little of everything; sand, grass, stones, fast packed dirt, hills, descents, and even a bit of single track. For any of you Mid Atlantic racers that read this. I HIGHLY recommend it, esp if you can't do the Mother of all Cross Races the next day, Iron Cross.