My first Mountain Bike Race this Year – By Lil Kim.
I am relatively new to bike racing in general and have done only one other mountain bike race which was the Vermont 50 last year.
Lining up for the race there were several race savvy women, chattering about how hot it was going to be, that the first 3 miles of the course is uphill, that they entered novice because they were out of shape, one woman injured her back last year and was crawling around her house until she got back surgery,etc,etc. I kept quiet. I wished I had only signed up for novice because I had a choice. I really wasn’t feeling well that morning, but I wanted to give it a go–poor training over the last few weeks, intestinal distress, and laryingitis. I decided that if I got to the start and my intestinal distress kicked in I would just leave, at least I had tried. I warmed up on the course, yes- it was hilly to start, but not bad.
Since I wasn’t feeling 100% I decided to move towards the back of my wave. That was a mistake! After the first hill a woman got off her bike before she reached the top, in the middle of the path! Not too long after that a woman got off her bike because the downhill was too steep – in the middle of the path! It was about this time that I remembered Skip’s suggestion of where to place myself in the Vermont 50 “Race-Up Front!” Oh well! I was passing a few women and then the men started coming along. I fell a couple of times because of sudden stops and I couldn’t clip out of my falling side. Lara has recently been practicing clipping out of her least favorite side, something I have been meaning to do too! A good mountain biking skill to practice when on your road bike.
Anyway, I trudged along, I felt lousy and dehydrated so I negotiated with myself to finish just one lap, like I was a novice-because maybe I really am! I am glad I did the race and I look forward to doing another. This was not the finish I had hoped for the first time I represented BSBL in my slick kit!