The singlespeed state championship kicked off the weekend of racing in St. Cloud last weekend, followed by the elite race on the same day, and the Pork Chop cyclocross race on Sunday. I was focusing my energy on the singlespeed race, ending up 2nd to Brendan by a few seconds. I was running a 2:1 on the ridged two niner wraped in Bontrager mud x tires. Anyways, we were off and I spun myself into the singletrack first. It was pretty slick in the corners but not that bad. I felt a bit rusty in the twisty stuff, as I hadn't ridden the mtb since 24 hours of Afton. I have to say, I love the big wheels, but they are definitely not an advantage at the jail trail. I was hitting by bars on trees, sending showers down on Brendan. I started to feel more comfortable on the second lap, though. I even gaped Brendan for a little while, but he caught me when things got really tight again. I should of expected his attack on one of the last open sections. Once he got around me, I made sure to stick right on his wheel for when the last open section came. This last section was really the finish sprint, as the actual finish didn't have much of a strait, so whoever came out of the corner first, baring a crash, would most likely take the win. When that last open section came up, Brendan hammered, and I gave it my all but couldn't get around him, or even stick on his wheel for that matter. And that was where the race was won. Congrats to Brendan for the win. I'll be there next year to try again.
An hour or so latter, I lined up for the elite race. It was a short lived race, however. I got my first DNF of the year, when I took a bad line though some rocks and snapped my derailleur off at the hanger. What an awful sound. It's too bad, because I was feeling pretty strong sitting behind SamO. Sam and I, by the way, had a battle to work out over 2nd place in the series. Good job with the win, Sam!
Sunday was CX. What an awsome course--lots of climbs and really fast descents, a mountain biker's cross course if one ever existed. I came out 2nd in the one twos race. The long and short of it is that Matt Allen, Jake Boyce, and myself traded pulls for the entire race. Jake dropped his chain with 2 to go. I forced the pace on the last lap, but I took a risk near the finish that ultimately made me second best. There was a set of barriers half way up a hill, Matt was on my wheel, I made the decision to hop back on the bike after the barriers instead of running the remainder of the steep hill. Problem: it was a steep hill. I couldn't turn the pedals and had to hop off. This set me back about 5 seconds. I wasn't able to take it all back before the finish, which came about 40 sec after my mistake.
This is getting long, but one last thing: I took the dubya from Matt at tonight's cross race in St. Louis Park. Three of the six barriers were hoppable, two of which were at the base of a hill, which allowed me to ride the hill while others had to get off their bikes and run. It's unreal how much time you can save by staying on your bike whenever possible. Risky, but it gets cheers, so what the hell.
I'll get some pics up soon if any exist on the nets.
Oh yeah! I'll be racing this cross season for Angry Catfish bike shop and the regional Rapha/Focus team. Bike and kits are on their way!