Get home from job 1 and start getting ready for tomorrow. Going to Stokesville to train/pre-ride some of the SM100 race course. I gotta make sure I'm prepared for the 4hour ride. I zip around the yard a few minutes to make sure everything is shifting and moving the way it should.
Around 7:30 I get a call from my buddy Doc who's going also. He's been trying to true his wheel all day and has stripped out his Maveric spoke nipple tool. I don't have one.
I tell him to just come out tomowrow, I'll bring my extra wheel and we'll swap his out if its that bad.
This will come into play in a big way.
Up at 5am. Uhgg. Whose idea was this? Meet Randy at his house at 5:50 and ride down.
One stop in Va to meet up with Doc so he can follow us down and we get to Todd lake just after 9.
So the ride consisted of Me, Randy,Doc,Chris,Eric, James (Vescus), 2 guys I didn't really know also, Rob and Scott. Other than Rob and Scott I knew I was going to be the slow guy, so I was hoping one of them would end up sweeping. I don't mind being slow, just not the slowest.
We all head out of the Todd lake area, I'm 300 yards from the truck and my hub quit working.
There it is. I'm "that" guy again. Kind of reminded me of the guy in the race last year who had a flat in the 1st mile of the race.
I remember the spare tire I had brought for Doc to use, back to the truck , a quick change over, I didn't evan need to adjust the calipers and I'm back with the group.
We start the 1st climb, its the same as when you leave aid station 2 of the race.
2 mile climb, a tiny little break than 2 more miles to the downhill.
In the 1st mile everyone is pulling away from me....except for Rob.
There's my Bitch!
Thank you Rob for taking my position as the slow guy.
Oh yeah. Karma is going to kick my ass for that remark. Watch him train like a madman and beat me in September.
We all make it down safely, I enjoyed the hell outta the downhill.
A quick stop at the crappy quick-mart, which btw, only had powerade, no gatorade.
Then we formed a paceline for the 5 miles to the next climb.
We're going along at about 14mph. Rember we are on MTB's.
I'm behind Randy really wanting to get out of the paceline. He gets his turn at the front and bumps it up to 16. Evan I know that you don't do that in paceline.
We start the 2 mile climb. This is the worst section of the race for me.
At one point I'm by myself. I can't see anyone in front, and Rob is outta view.
I take a fall off the side of the trail and am pissed.
Start hiking again and hit a good spot to get back on and ride a little but I'm having a time just trying to throw my leg over the saddle. Its still in my normal "road/hill climbing" height.
I say fuck it and lower it....alot.
I'm grannying up the hill and realize I'm not having trouble staying on the off camber trail.
I get to the top and realized that I've just rode more than 1/2 of climb.
Thats more than I've ever done on any of the other pre-rides.
I was stoked.
I had one bad crash on the way down which Chris "heard". You know it was bad when people hear you crash. I was ok but had a re-play of my 1st time at the race. Had the brake lever pull out of the housing. This time it was the rear. I can live with that.
We do the last 10 miles back to the campground on fire roads and we're done.
I did this same pre ride 2 years ago and felt like shit when we were done. That year I finished in 13 hours. I was ready to do another 10 miles or so this time.
Makes me think a 12.5 hour finish it do able this year.