Wednesday, September 5, 2007

24 Hour Worlds Race Report

It was HOT. The Lemans start (on pavement) was not too long. I managed to be 1st er 2nd (single speed) out of the gate. 10miles in to lap one I had moved back to 5th. I was feeling good about it. Mile marker 13...Psssssssssssssss. CRAP!!! I flipped the bike and changed the front tube. By the time I was done I had earned the place I would eventually stay in for the rest of the day. 8th.

I rolled in the pits feeling really really bad, mentally. Did I mention it was hot. 100+. Aris asked me if I wanted to switch bikes. I had said NO. Big mistake. I went back out for lap two still feeling pretty bad. Mile marker 10...Psssssssssssssss. CRAP!!! But wait. It stopped loosing air, at around 20psi. Just enough to keep rolling. I rode the last 3.76miles really really careful n slow where I needed to.

The pits after lap two called for a bike change. and some jerky and red grapes. I started to realize I was drinking to the heat rather than on a schedule. I left for Lap 3.

Bloated. I had zero room left in me. It was a horrible feeling. I had absolutely no energy. Rideable climbs had become hike-a-bikes. But it was only lap 3! Physically I was out. Mentally, even worse. The top 3 single speeders (1st, 2nd and 3rd) had already lapped me! Did I mention it was only my 3rd lap??? I wanted to quit real bad. This was not what I had come here to do. My crew no doubt pushed me on.

It was the salt. My body started to recover really fast. My body turned a 180. My mind went back in to drive. I started passing geared bikes. I was descending faster than full suspension bikes. I was riding 87% of all the climbs. I flew into the pits. Everyone was shocked. They were not ready for me at all. I normally would have been mad, but it was truly my fault. I was surprisingly faster. The race is 14.5hours right??

Gimme another red bull! On ice this time. In a bottle. So I can take it with me and sip it slow. I knew from past experiences that too many red bulls can kill a race real quick. I knew this was going to be it for a while. Pedal pedal pedal, sip, pedal pedal, sip sip. Lap 6 felt like my fastest yet. I still had my mental state to battle with.

I mean I'm not dumb. Yes, anything can happen, but these guys were fast, out of my league. They were not about to slow down for me either.

My fastest just wasn't enough. If I would have stayed in, maybe could have reached 5th. Maybe. But we will never know. Cause I quit.

I quit feeling good. I did not quit cause my bikes broke, or a crash happened, or cramps... I literally felt it wasn't worth it for my crew. at 3am I was in 8th. I felt horrible at the thought of my pit crew hucking it all night long till 12noon for me to to still be in 8th. Every other Enduro I have done, my crew has always had the pleasure of some type of racing excitement to keep them going. I wasn't giving them that this time. I felt bad for it.

I know for a fact, my crew would never even think about holding a bad performance against me(during or after). That isn't the type of people they are. I also know for a fact that this is not going to be the last time I don't perform at a big race. My crew will still back me. I guess this is what you get when you cram your family into that little 10 x 10.

With that said. I am not the only one stoked to come back even stronger next year!

***I have never been so fast on a bike before. right around mile marker 3 was a screaming downhill. I have no idea how fast it was, but it was the fastest I have ever gone on a bike(it was 12midnight too). Can you dig it?

***ERGON grips again saved me.

***Sloane Anderson(Topeak/ERGON) and Sean Sullivan (Independent Fabrication) are two really cool guys. I got to ride a lap with Sullie too(he wasn't 100%).

***Peter Balistreri, you are hired.

***Oakley must do their product testing in Cali.

***Chuck at Bobcat Bicycles in Salinas, CA was extremely helpful. They even threw a turd in my bike box! Gave us full use of his shop on more than one occasion. Provided great insight on the sport of 24hr racing. Made me fall in love with the SURLY Pugsley. What more could could you ask from a fruit cake?


Carlos said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carlos said...

I was in 11th overall at 24-9 nationals when I quit, I had flat on my 1st lap too, pretty much what happened to you.
Did you ask Darwin to get you a nice cup of coffee at night? I think you could finish it if you had that coffee.
Good job anyways, and yeah, next year we'll come back stronger.

What Do I Feel Like Riding today? said...

How 'bout that surly pugsley, build one up, SS, lol. I've ridden a SS puglsey before too, they are fun giants. Good job all around though. See ya sunday right? I'm gonna do sport BTW. I've been blogging up a storm since you been gone.

Maverick said...

Love reading your race reports, too bad this one didn't go as planned. That's racing, as they say, and it sounds like you learned a few things so that's cool. You've had some huge accomplishments this year and SHOULD be proud. You'll get 'em next time.

Ronsta said...

Good effort dude. Still looks like the trip was worth it.

Remember, losses teach you more than success.
Success just proves you're learning the right things.

Your already better prepared for next year.

Now have a pizza and get ready for 'cross!

Jeff Kerkove said...


Consider Team EXPO signed for '08

Jay said...

Great job. You will be stronger and faster next year. See you at the races.