There it is! That little sign of fitness showing through.
I love it.
Conditions were perfect for a Memorial day bike race. Draper trails are great, and after a few days of off and on rain showers, the sun was shining.
As usual, during my pre-race warm up, the legs weren’t giving out too much information as to what the day would hold. That’s pretty typical though, so I wasn’t worried. I just wanted to pull through with a solid race and find the the bit of fitness that was hopefully linging inside.
As the race started, the pro mens field sped up the first rise. The crowds were cheering, bells were ringing and someone yelled “try harder, KDAY” I love’d it. As we rolled into the start of the climb, I had made my way into second place, just off Bryson Perry’s wheel. He was putting down a pretty fast pace and I knew it was going to be tough to hang on. I tried, but knew it wouldn’t last long. Bryson began to put a little more time into me around every corner. I settled in to a decent pace trying to keep my distance between the rest of the field. Near the top of the climb, Reed Wycoff was on my wheel and also pushing a quick pace. Reed’s got a big engin. If you ever get a chance to hold onto it and you can, consider yourself in good company.
By the time we hit the DH on the Rush trail, Reed had about 20 sec. on me. It wasn’t long for me to notice my rookie mistake of not enough air in my front tire. For most courses it would have been ideal, but the Rush trail is full of high speed berms, jumps and tight compressions. I laid off the gas a bit and nursed it all the way down. Quinn Bingham, Chris Holley and I were all together at the bottom of the descent as we rolled into lap #2.
We passed through the feedzone where my dad was handing bottles. He must have known… he happen to have his floor pump available so I pulled off to add some air. I now had to work a little harder to catch Quinn and Chris. They’re bot exceptional rides. It wasn’t easy but I was able to bridge to Quinn and jump back into fourth place. The second time on the DH was much better and a bit faster. At the bottom there was only about 20 sec. between Chris and myself. Quinn was also right on my tail.
I tried my best to reel Chris in, but he was also up ahead, pushing hard to avoid us catching him. In the end, Chris got the better of Quinn and I for the third spot on the podium. I was able to hold Quinn off, but not by much. It was a great race in all aspects. Tight competition, great course (minus the trail in the weeds down by the rail road tracks) and great weather.
I’m pretty happy with fourth, mainly because I felt good throughout the race and I think it’s a sign of better things to come. So, here’s to the rest of the season. Let’s hope it continues to get better and remains just as fun.