Saturday, May 17, 2008

Front Range 50

Well, first I have a brief story. Mr. Kerkove and I headed out of Fort Collins yesterday around noon and drove down to the FR 50 venue in Lakewood. After some misdirection by the guard shack dude, we found our campsite for the night and proceeded to back into it. Long story short, an angry tree branch didn't like Jeff's bike and busted his brake lever and bent up his der hanger. So, we headed back to the fort for the replacement parts. (there is a picture of said evil tree here)

Anyway, after getting back to the venue: still laughing about the accident, we headed out for a pre-ride. Let me describe the trail this way..... if you were to type "super-fast-crazy-buff-rippin-trail" into Wicopedia: a picture of this trail would appear. 10 miles of rip-roaring single and double track with around 1000 ft of climbing/lap would make this a darn fast 50 miles.

After the pre-ride, we headed back to camp and I opted for sleeping in my hammock for the night, However the lack of trees ment that it was strung between the grill and picnic table. After dinner I crawled in for the night. However, some spotty rain kept me under my rain tarp. That is, until about 3am when winds started to whip my tarp around a lot. So, I got out and hunkered down on the ground till sunrise.

Rain on the horizon.

Race morning was perfect and after the usual musings I lined up for the 50 mile race with 150+ others. The start was a 1/4 mile gravel road climb before the singletrack, however put 150 guys on bikes gunning for position and a mad-pack is born. I had a decent spot once on the trail, however the first lap was wheel to wheel and at times even bumping bars and wheels with other riders. On some of the descents and fast sections, it was easy to spin in the big ring, fun right? ....now go that fast while 6 in. from the guy in front of you, who is that far from the guy in front of him....good stuff!! My first lap was 44 min by my watch and since I was carrying all of my food for the race and 2 bottles at a time I only needed to stop every other lap...so I rolled on through to my 2nd lap. The field was more spread out by now so I turned in a 42 something lap time. After that, things were fairly uneventful until the last lap when I started to get a small cramp on the biggest climb. So I backed off a hair, spun a little more and within a few minutes things were back under control. However, I was in and around a group of 4 guys the whole race who were all in my age category, we had dropped one guy early on the 5th lap and now, after my cramp, the other two had a minute or two gap on me. So, I put my nose to the stem and cranked until I was practically bleeding out of the eyes...I finished about 10 seconds behind both of the other guys....close.

Anyway, I am quite happy with my effort. I think my total time was in the low 3:50's, and I'll update as soon as the results are posted. The course was defiantly well suited for riders with strong TT skills, and I found a few weaknesses that I'll soon be addressing in my training. Overall, I'm quite happy with my fitness for May considering my off season and sleeping on couches for 7 months....now all I have to figure out is what to race next....

Update: Final results are up here. I finished 9th in the 19-29 category with a final time of 3:51:05. However it looks like I was slightly mistaken at the two guys I was chasing down who I thought were in my group.....disyphering all the different marking on peoples legs during the race was like trying to read latin.

2 comments:

Paul said...

GREAT WORK CARNEY!

What campground did you stay at?

Generalcuz said...

Hey.

Nice work finishing the race. It was a great race hands down. Hope to see you at the B-68.

Kris