May 21, 2014
As many of you know I went on my first NORBA sanctioned race today after many years. The season opener course was beautiful when I arrived, but it got uglier and uglier it seemed. It punished me with steep inclines, super sand traps, crazy drop offs, and the madness of multi-level racing...meaning all groups from Sport-Expert/Elite-Pro, age, and rank start literally at the same time!! It was complete mayhem for the first 12 miles, but the peloton started separating from the masses by the mid-mark at 24 miles in. I was beginning to get into a rhythm approaching my last lap, BUT then IT HAPPENED!!! A beginner rider finishing his first lap ran into my rear wheel and I literally went flying head first into a tree off a ravine below. A little dazed, I heard the race marshal ringing her cow bell and screaming up the mountain, "rider down, rider down, medic, medic!!". I managed to crawl back up the slope and the medic and a photographer helped pull my bike out of the bushes. Kept my composure and then I'm off!! Chasing for lost time in the final 12-miles out of the total 48 for today. By the time I approached the second to final climb, my asthma really started hitting, so I snatched my inhaler from my bag and puffed it....it was kinda funny because the Race Director and the crowd cheered really loud when I did that. To me it was do it or die, but I guess to them it was kinda funny. Irony. I managed to get into somewhat of a rhythm again but my shoulders, left elbow and left leg was now beginning to ache from the fall, but I really, really, really wanted to podium, or at least make them have a run for their money. Since all of the divisions were in the same loops, I had no idea who was ahead of me and who was behind me, heck I didn't even know who was in the Elite/Semi-Pro category....so I just panicked and gave it my all.
Crossed the finish line and there were a few guys in front of me, I figured I must have lost a lot of time because of the fall and the peloton surely caught and passed me while I was down in the trench. To my surprise, sponsors were there to greet us and I ended up getting signed for sponsorship by Sambazon, some health fruit drink company. I was a little dazed still, the guy kept asking me what I liked to eat or drink....I was like dude, I don't know but all I could think of was ginger, so he gave me a bottle of their Kale & Ginger and had me sign their contract. A box of their fruit drink every month that I race in and wear their logo on my jersey or number plate. Pretty cool! Then I went over to the judges' table to get my number plate scanned and saw on the screen that I placed #7 out of the 621 people from Expert and Elite. I was disappointed that I didn't get a podium, but I made the top ten with a lot of shit happening....so I lucked out. Plus, no broken bones, but I will definitely be sore as heck for the next few days. Result from my broken Sigma cyclocomputer: 12,000 ft. total elevation, 3h:17m:19s, 2219 calories, 579 Watts, 48 miles, #7/621. It was my first time on this race track, against guys that ride it year after year, so I am pretty pleased with the result.....but dammit, NO PODIUM!!!!! Congrats to my buddy, Cameron, for taking the overall win in the Pro level....I can't believe his fat ass is that fast...but hats off bro! You did your sister proud!!
Below some pictures from Blackstar, my crusty beat-up face, and 34 NORBA points for my finish today- screen shot from the judge's table. Alright, it's time for me to DIE in my bed and let the healing begin!!!!