One thing I do enjoy about CX races and being a 'Cat 2 on paper' is that the ladies' races usually don't go off until midday, which enables me to sleep in more than for your average race and thankfully the NorCalCX series was no exception. So after a decent night sleep, I packed up the TDI and headed north to Vallejo to take another crack at CX in California. This was the first race in a 5-race series I signed up for -- the NCCX Series put on by SuperPro racing. They named all the races after wildcats so I figured they had to be fun :-)
New races bring an additional bit of anxiety to your normal pre-race nerves. Here I was, on my own, 2500 miles from MABRA CX, and trying to navigate my way around a new CX landscape. Luckily, most folks are friendly and I got my nerve up to randomly ride up to some other ladies, say hi and see what the skinny was on pre-riding, racing and whatnot.
|Rolling down the mulch pile "obstacle"|
There were about 13 women in the A field -- not quite as big as the other weekend, but a decent sized field I figured. We had a wide open start up the road and onto a grassy hill. With fewer women, I was able to power to a fairly decent start as we began to wind through the course. But that was probably as good as it was going to get, as in one of what you'd probably call a "power" section of the course, another girl made a pass. I tried to stick on her wheel, but the 90+ degree heat started to get to me.
|Thanks to the guys from Ornotbike for taking shots |
of the Women's A race :-)
Admittedly I lost cont of laps, but finally when I heard that bell going, I knew I could drag myself through one more. I could see a few girls coming behind me, but tried to at least keep it steady and hold whatever position I had finally slipped to...which when all the dust settled, turned out to be 8th. I'll take it...:-)
After the race I soft-pedaled back to the TDI and dumped an entire water-bottle over my head hoping to get my HR down to something near-human. Later when I uploaded my data for Coach B my average HR turned out to be 184 for the race. Ouch.
So live and learn, and maybe one day I'll figure out how to ride in hot, dry, dusty CX races ...
NCCX #2 up in Fairfax and here's to hoping for a few more barriers and cooler temperatures!