No rain. Lot's of racing. Win.
Check out the race report from our tallest Mobster, Brad S.
NeoCycle XC Mountain Bike Race Report
This has been a great year so far; first year racing mountain bike and I'm loving it. This makes trail race number 3. We woke up to a chilly morning but standing at the start line, could feel the sun starting to warm things up. Perfect weather for racing! The rain this past week had me a little worried, but the trail ended up being in great shape. The ground was still pretty firm, and wasn't at all dusty. Sure, there were a few puddles in the really low spots, but I was glad to not have to ride through peanut butter. At some point in the last few weeks a team went through and backfilled some of the roots/rocks, which made for a bit smoother ride, but it did take a little of the challenge out of it.
Our field was the combined sport/expert group...I decided I was going to shoot for a mid pack finish. The course started off with about a mile and a quarter ride down Gorge Parkway, then rode almost all of Bedford backward. Touchstone was out of it because they were not able to close the road and we rode Karl's Corner the standard direction. I lined up at the front and ended up hanging in the middle of the lead group, once we all got moving. Surprisingly, everyone stuck together...I kind of expected it to thin out a bit more before hitting the single track, but no one seemed interested in attacking that early. When we did get to the trail, it was a bottleneck and I heard a few people behind me unclip because of the slowdown. Once on the trail, the field thinned out pretty quick. I was feeling good and was able to get by two riders when the trail popped back out on the multipurpose trail. I eventually ended up riding with Dave Marsi through a few sections, then started to fade.
The second trail section of lap 2 gave me a chance to recover but halfway through the lap one rider caught me on a road section. We wished each other a good race and dropped back into the trail. Coming out of the trail at Egbert Road and Overlook Lane, one more rider caught up and was on my wheel the rest of the way through. Unfortunately by the end, I was pushing to hold him off, but couldn't pull off the final sprint...got me by a bike length, haha...next time! This was a fun race, and ended up finishing in the top third of the field.
Overall, skills are improving, but still need a lot more work. Went skidding around a couple corners and had a surprise tree limb in the trail on the back side of a turn (not there on lap one) but this direction had a really nice flow to it. I think I enjoyed it more than the standard direction. (Maybe the Metroparks would open it to a flow similar to East rim or Royalview and alternate direction/days??)
Congrats to the Shred Mobb on a great race, and to Michael Banks on finishing 4th! Also, many thanks to Ryan for the opportunity to be on a great team with experienced riders to learn from. Makes this so much more fun and can't wait for the next race!