Tooting Ones’ Own Horn

I’m not one to brag about my accomplishments.  However, I’m going against type here grabbing my horn, checking the spit valve and blowing it until the neighbors threaten to call the police.  

I’ve been racing cross now for almost a full year and haven’t really had much to show for it, aside with some mysterious stains on my jersey that won’t wash out.  Don’t get me wrong, I do okay, I can usually be found in the middle of the pack doing what I can to keep up and fending off those behind me.  You can yell “on your left” all day long, I’m not pulling aside and let you pass me, you have to work for it, this is a race not a group ride.  

Men’s cat 4 can be a challenge, a mix of sandbaggers too afraid to cat up, and the guys who decided last night over a few beers that they want to race ‘cross on heavy ass mountain bikes with flat pedals. Men’s Masters 35+ B is a totally different animal, every bit as competitive, a bit more grey around the temples and a smaller field.  

A goal I set for myself was to finish in the top ten sometime this season along with a laundry list of other more outrageous and probably impossible tasks.  I should have finished in the top 10 last year at the last race of the season but I got screwed, I was unaware you could protest the results.  So this will be my first “official” top 10 finish, that is unless someone challenges the results and I get bumped down. 

The race itself was a challenge, probably the most difficult course this year.  Lots of long climbs intothe wind off the lake which felt like they would never end.  It felt like the entire course was uphill, I know that’s not possible.  It felt like I was trapped in a MC Escher painting constantly climbing a set of stairs that never end.

It’s nearly impossible to tell where your standing, they mix in the Masters 45+, 55+ B’s along with Women’s 4, and Juniors too.  Unless you know everyones ones age it’s nearly impossible to say where you are in the grand scheme of things, plus you have more important things to be thinking about. Just ride as hard as you can and let the officials sort everything out.  

We’ll see how it goes tomorrow, for day two of the Smithville Cyclocross Festival.


click for my photos

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