Monday, July 16, 2012


Saturday was the Crusher in the Tushar. I had four goals:
  1. Don't finish last in my category.
  2. Beat Adam.
  3. Beat Seth.
  4. Beat Rick.
The first goal doesn't sound like a big deal, but I was racing Pro/Open Men, so there were not really any slow guys that would automatically keep me from the lanterne rouge. And there were a number of legitimate pros, i.e., guys who actually make a living racing bicycles. That meant I needed at least one guy in that field to have a bad day, but not such a bad day that he would not finish. Really, though, I wanted to finish fast enough to beat at least one person who was not having a bad day.

Goals 2-4 are a carryover from cyclocross, where every week there is the race within the race between the four of us. I am still smarting from Rick beating me at the line at Ft. Buenaventura, which cost me three points in the season series, which meant Seth beat me by two points in the overall standings and in the process got the eighth and final callup for the first race this season. Seth and I are both keenly aware that he gets a callup and I don't.

Goal 4, however, was kind of a stretch goal, because I have ridden enough with Rick this year to know that he is riding super strong, particularly if the race involves climbing.  I think it is safe to say that climbing is a key component of the Crusher.

My race preparation went well, and other than flying to the east coast the week of the event, getting home late Thursday night, driving to Beaver on Friday, and waking up Friday night with stomach pains that led to me throwing up most of what I had eaten for dinner, I really can't complain. Also, it was raining when I woke up Saturday morning and continued to rain after we started. Not that I mind the rain, I just suffer less than others seem to when it's hot.

The best part about this event is lining up at the start and seeing guys that I have cheered for as a spectator at cyclocross nationals--namely Ryan Trebon and Jamie Driscoll--get callups, and then line up right behind them. Seriously, if we could just do the callups and first 5k where I get to ride in the same group with those guys, I would still pay my hundred and whatever bucks for the entry.

After the first 5k, the rest of the race was really hard. The road was muddy and rougher than last year. I had fewer problems with cramping than last year, so that was nice. Rick beat me by a few minutes, but I reached my other three goals.

I am happy not to have any races longer than an hour for the rest of the year.