Monday, July 30, 2007

kind of a race report

I chose not to do another pre-ride on Friday. I knew the course well enough from Thursday's ride. Friday was a hang out day. And a lookout day. I was on the lookout for Dejay Birtch and Jake Kirkpatrick and Endurosnob and Paddy and Dallas Sigurdur and Joe and Travis.. No sign of anyone, yet. 5:30 rolls around, its time to register. Dar went ahead to save a spot in line. Thanks. I hit the line and guess who I run into. Paddy n Dallas! Right then and there, I knew it was going to be really tough. Paddy is for sure one of the top 5 endurance singlespeeders in the WORLD. Wait. Stop worrying about who's here and who's not. Just worry about what you gotta do. Drink. Fazolli's for some carbo loading. Then back to camp/"the pits" to put on the number plates before bed. My plan was to be in bed by 9:00pm. It ended up being 9:30 which is still OK. As you can imagine, it is really tough to fall asleep with such a big race in front of you.

9:45ish - My crew(Dad, Aris, Theo and Dar) decided to shoot the sh*t with Paddy n Dallas's pit crew right outside my tent. The same people who told me to forget about the Big Dogs, are keeping me up talking about the same Big Dogs I was supposed to forget about. I did not fall asleep till after 11pm. I was way off schedule due to some extremely interesting chit chat. Paddy, its not just you. All Canadians are cool!

7:00am - I'm up. Before everyone else.

8:00am - Prep.

9:45am - I receive the pep talk.

10:00am - Its a go.

My biggest problem lately is starting races slow. Or I could put it... I start with my "enduro pace". I always manage to put my self really far back in the pack early on. Most endurance racers can go really hard(high heat rate) for 3ish laps and shift into enduro after they have gappped the field. To stop this trend, my goal was to run hard for the Le Mans start to avoid bottle necks on the first lap, and do rolling pit stops when ever possible to not lose any time it the pits. The goals worked. I was sitting in 5th after 7ish hours.

The "your in fifth" news was great to hear. I was also only 20minutes back from 2nd. 1st? Out of the question.

I roll out feeling great. I hit the Flower Trail with some spunk. Then I see 4th place with a broken frame and walking the course. I keep rolling. I then hit the Party on Red Bud to receive even better news from the littlest Bro "your in 2nd!"

6:25pm - 2nd place. time to put on the lights.

6:29pm - I roll thru the timing tent. CRAP. I didn't need my lights yet. I ran an entire lap wearing lights that didn't need to be on. Close to 2lbs of extra weight. The upside was that I get to do a rolling pit when everyone else is stopping to put on their lights...

I was really starting to gain on 1st. So much that on the next lap I enter the pits in second and exit in first. Thanks to the rolling hand ups. Talk about a boost for my crew. I am sure they were pumped knowing they were the ones to launch me into first.

One problem. I sit in first place with close to 15more hours of racing. It was the best and worst feeling. A feeling I have never felt before in all....3 of my 24hr races. I left on that lap in first up maybe 20seconds on 2nd. As I leave for the lap someone tells me "no need to gap him yet. Just ride your race".

From that moment on I was in a constant state of fear. My adrenalin took charge over my mind and I rock the lap. I put a 4minute gap on second. I stop for butt cream and hydro pack swap.

I head out again. The gap grows larger. 8minutes. Still running on adrenalin. Stop to swap out batteries.

12minutes. Trixie asks me how I'm feeling. "great. But I'm running on adrenalin. And I'm worried its going to run out."

Gap grows all the way to 27minutes. My body couldn't take it any more. I make my longest pit stop of the race. Super warm pasta and a 3person massage while I ate standing. B on one arm. J on the other. Trixie on my almost cramping right quad. My 10minute pit shrinks my lead to 17minutes.

The body reboot allowed me to put in a hot lap. The hot lap led to a cold lap. Then the knowledge or second place gaining 3minutes on me from my cold lap pumped me to do another hot lap. back and forth. Hot and cold.

3:00am - Down and out. I was yawning all over the place. I felt like dropping the bike and falling asleep next to the single track.

3:10minutes later - I come up behind Dallas. He decides to kick it and ride with me for about a half a lap. Dallas, you saved my life. The talk alone kept me awake and motivated. He told me the morning would bring new energy and that energy drinks were ok to start taking.

5:30am - Dallas was right. I was saying "good morning!" to everyone out on the course. It was time to seal the deal.

Aris is loving the fact that that he gets to tell me "only 3more laps and you win". Its not the first thing I wanted to hear. It was the truth though.

Trixie n clan after they push me off for my parade lap.

Ditch the pack. Only one mile to go! It was the absolute best feeling.

I couldn't have done it with out you.

Dar, Dad, Trixie, Aris n Theo. You guys did it.
Aris - I completely understand that I dragged you in to this. Being my wrench that is. You must know that your love for the sport allowed me to win. You kept me rolling in so many ways.

Cody, Shelley, B, J, Patrick, Erin, Deanna, Jeff, Carlos, Holly, Dar, Theo, Dad - Thank you!
ERGON - 25hours on the bars. Not one problem.
Clif - Bloks n shots every lap and a Mojo bar for breakfast.
Trek - 1 29in wheel must be better than 2.
Oakley - you were my vision.
Lazer - covered my bad hair day.
Light & Motion - Flawless.
Expedition Supply - See...its not all for nothing!
Don't get me wrong. I won. But I know more than anybody that there are a hand full of SOLO Singlespeeders out there that could have showed up and took me to the cleaners. I get the unofficial title for one year because I won on that day. Thats it.
***Jeff Frings*** has posted his report.


Jeff Kerkove said...


Maverick said...

Awesome job! Congrats to everyone.

Brian said...

Great race dude! Nice job.

They don't give out a stars-n-stripes jersey for the ss category??

namrita o'dea said...


Endurosnob said...

You killed it when it counted. Much respect.

Anonymous said...

check the link out. Gus made a Trek News article.

Shelley said...

That's my brother-in-law! Whoop whoop!!

Anonymous said...

You forgot to mention the big yellow oaf who farts all the time!!

Ronsta said...

Killer job dude!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations again on a great race. It all came together when it was suppose to and that's what counts.
Don't think about the "what if" that's not what life's about. YOU HAD A GREAT RACE WITH LASER LIKE FOCUS AND THAT'S WHAT BEING THE CHAMPS ALL ABOUT.
Anyway enjoy those stars and bars that you should have been given. I mean really, at awards they were giving jerseys for teams and every other denomination, whats up with that? As I said to many riders I talked to on the course when the asked what I was racing "the only one...SOLO."

Dallas "happy to have my ass kicked by better riders" Sigurdur

Anonymous said...

You killed it! Congrats!


EXPO Racing said...

I was farting for the last 10hours and I am an oaf. Although, I don't ever remember wearing any yellow.

Help me out

Buckwheat said...

You forgot to mention me in your dork!

Anonymous said...

Great Job! Your rocked it really. I have never seen anyone give it their all as much as you did. I could have never done it. My sss would of hurt soooo much, I dont even want to think about it. :) Ya Buckwheat was a good boy all night!!
Anywho... Great Job Gus! Congrates and kick *ss at worlds. The funny thing is the other riders dont even know what their up against... Hope their ready.
-race on-