The mud and course conditions Friday defeated me. Saturday, I felt good warming up, had a decent start and snap-there goes my chain. Raced about 20 seconds. Sunday, they did not call my name at all. Started in last row and by some miracle got up to about 5th or 6th at the first turn. Rode with some strong dudes for 2/3 of race and at about the moment of cracking, Boom, there goes my rear Zipp. Broken and flat. Rode flat to the pit, jumped on the pit bike and in for 1.5 more laps. Flat tire cost me about 4-5 places. Went from 10ish to 15ish but who cares. Quitting was not a choice though. Enough bike racing.
Here is some joy. Charlotte May, Joshua Fagerburg and my Will. The picture says it all.
When one races only 20 seconds the thinking is still intact. It is Saturday afternoon and I have one preferred bike. Better get to work fixing the chain. The Kona mechanic was nice enough to repair the broken chain. That was cool, but even better was Fred Rose. Fred is a fellow competitor (better than me) who manages BGI in Bloomington. He tells me of a new chain he has in his car in case of emergencies. I buy it for half off and then Fred is nice enough to put it on for me. A total random act of kindness. When in Bloomington spend some cash at BGI.
While we are up at Fred’s car messing with the chain we ran into cyclocross star, Jeremy Powers, getting ready to race. This meeting was a total highlight. Fred and I bent his ear with nonsense far too long. Nonetheless, Jeremy kept on chatting. He was friendly, humble, unassuming and despite focusing on race prep was still engaged in our conversation. Here he is a famous bike racing star conversing with a bunch of crinkly old dudes. In reflecting on our encounter, Jeremy was much friendly than many masters racer champions. A photo for proof, lest one think I make stuff up on my blog.
Jeremy then went on to devastate the field. He made the course that us mere mortals struggle through look too easy. A real eye opener. He rode near flawlessly in technical sections. The sand was barely a distraction. His speed through both sand pits was visibly faster than his competitors. Then of course; the bunny hopping barriers…
Yes, I am now a fan of Jeremy Powers.
What does watching pros race on the same course we race on teach me? Don’t hang too much of your self worth on bike racing. These guys earn money doing this for obvious reasons. The difference in speed and power is crystal clear.
That “post” we hang our self worth on is yet another topic.