So on Sunday we headed down to Farmington, CT for the second race in the Root 66 series - the Fat Tire Classic, at Winding Trails. We had skipped the first race in the series two weeks ago since it was down near New Haven and deemed to be too long a trip for a 2pm Sunday afternoon start. Conveniently on Sunday our race was at 11:30 and it was on a course that Cory and I were racing for the third time, Shane for the second. Maiden voyage for Big Bird. Cory drove down with BB and Shane and I carpooled since none of us can handle four bikes on the roof.
We were all racing Cat 2 and I was alone in the 40-49 age bracket while Cory, Shane and BB
were racing each other in the 30-39 race. The course was almost exactly
the same as last year and is a great combination of flowy singletrack
and open fire roads, sandy in some spots. One major rooty section, two
mud bogs, and two climbs (one of which was a gravel fire road) were the
major features. My race had about 40 dudes in it and there were about
30 in the 30-39 field. Age groups go off 2 minutes apart with the 19-29
first, then 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, singlespeed, etc. You get the
picture. As you get deeper into the race it gets confusing as you begin
to catch people from the back of the field ahead of you, while in my
case also getting caught by the singlespeed winner and the top two guys
from the 50-59 field.
I was pleased with my race - no crashes, went hard, and
didn't experience any shock to the system in the first long hard effort
of the season (nearly 1.5 hours). The racing was tighter on Sunday and I
was going from small group to small group, picking up spots on the
uphills and not giving up ground on the technical parts where I am
weakest. On the last lap I was riding with two other guys when I ended up
with a stick in my rear derailleur. Had to pull off to the side of the
trail and they both went by me. Remounted and took up the chase but
could not reconnect and eventually began cramping as I neared the end of
the lap. At one point I thought my legs would lock up completely and I
would keel over on the trail but thankfully that didn't happen.
Unfortunately I lost a little ground on that last lap -- finished up in
Biggest results news is that Cory finished in 7th and Shane
was just behind him in 9th. BB finished up strong in 21st. Good first race of the season for the MTB squad. Next up is
the Weeping Willow in Ipswich on May 11. Hopefully we'll have Glenn
and Mr. and Mrs. Devo back out racing that weekend.
Submitted by Ken