Sunday, July 16, 2017

CBCC 100K 2017: Here's Mud In Your Eye

What can I say, it was muddy.  I was getting muscle cramps in my squinting muscles. It rained what seemed like inches the night before and the trail was a sloppy mess in a lot of places.  More on that later.

We took the day before off to pack and get ready for the race.  Good think too because I hadn't done a thing until the day before. 
Locked & Loaded
Once the truck was loaded we headed straight in the opposite direction to drop the granddogs off at mom's doggy daycare, thanks mom!  While in Portland I got to pick up a bottle of tire sealant because I couldn't remember when I added it last and the peace of mind was worth the extra 1/2 lb I added to the bike.  4ish hours later we had a place to sleep.
Home Sweet Home (the one on the left)
After a quick check of the course.
Surveying the Course
 We started our pre-race preparations.
Don't do anything different before race day
Grilling dinner was canceled due to rain.  Luckily we had made a few salads which we jogged into the outdoor center and ate cold. Sleep in the tent was slightly interrupted by 2 thunderstorms (that I know of)
I never looked at this or remembered it again.
OK, race morning!  I don't think it was raining.  I don't remember, it rained off and on quite a bit.  There are a lot of very skilled riders that have a lot more technical ability than I do.  Out of respect for their race I try to start at the back so I don't slow them down.  Unfortunately, that leaves a lot of people that suck more than I do ahead of me. 
Lots of Starters
Truth is, I'm stronger and faster that over half the people racing so I should seed myself better!
Me: I've got to give myself more credit and start closer to the front.
 The first 10 miles were spent stuck behind people sometimes stopped on singletrack.  That's the only excuse I'm going to use this race and it probably only cost me 10-15 minutes.

Passing by the outdoor center, the pack is finally breaking up.
The rest of the race was kind of a blur.  Or at least it was fuzzy.  Mostly because I had 4 lbs of mud in my eyes.  Glasses weren't really an option without windshield wipers.  Other than that I was feeling good and passing people left and right.  Literally (ON YOUR LEFT), (ON YOUR RIGHT).  The muddy course was a challenge in most places.  Not only could you not see because of slinging mud in your eye, it got pretty slithery and slippery in spots with quite a bit of speed.
Some of the nicer sections of trail, Photo Credit CBCC Facebook Page

Why there is  a bridge here and not other places the world may never know. Photo Credit CBCC Facebook Page

Around mile 22 my legs were feeling used and I had the realization that there was a lot of racing to go, but that passed. The major rest stop at mile 26 was just in time.  Somebody grabbed my bike and started pulling mud and grass out of my front derailleur with a smile.  Thank you so much to the volunteers, especially you.   I got to see a friend there who was spectating and held my bike while I ate what I could.  Endurance racing is funny.  Most days you are (supposed to be) monitoring what you eat and trying to keep the calories in check.  On a race day where you are burning an extra 6000 calories (the body only can store about 3500 for immediate use) you just need to eat anything you can keep down.  I knew the last time I did this race I was cramping bad so I was concentrating on getting some salt.

Well shit, that didn't work.

They make you write any possible problems on the back of your bib in case you need help.  Check
I passed the point where I started cramping the previous time and was feeling just fine.  Then out of NOWHERE was the first cramp.  Like a warning shot across the bow.  Crap.  That means the rest of the race will be trying to keep those at bay.  I started downing salt and water.  I had 6 salt tablets in addition to any electrolyte drink I was consuming which mostly held it off.  The last 10 or so miles had a climb of almost 1000' in just under 4 miles.  We had joined the 50K racers at this point and any time I tried to push to pass the cramps would "Just Say No".  So I was stuck behind some slower riders.

Even then I was keeping up the pace pretty well until the last mile.  My legs knew they were almost done only a mile from the fucking finish and they started locking up.  My speed dropped in half.  I had to concentrate on the fact that it was a nice easy trail and that I could make it.

That worked out because I finished in 6:39:20 with 2 other people in my class just seconds behind me.  I pulled off 9th out of 32 in my class and 43 out of about 108 finishers.

Not too shabby.  OK, some of them might have had flats and mechanicals but I chose to carry the extra weight of a 27.5+ bike up the hill with an extra half pound of sealant in each tire.  Not to mention the crap in my pack that I didn't use above all the tools and a spare tube.  Like a windbreaker.  And glasses, LOL.  The 27.5+ was a good choice.  I'm thinking it is always a good choice.
AT LEAST 2 extra lbs of mud on the bike and me by the end.
  Don't believe me? See for yourself.

And what ride wouldn't be complete without the Relive flyover?

Holy crap, I just watched that for the first time.  No wonder I was tired!

Thanks to my support team: My Wife

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