oktoberfest write up
Line up with the rest of the solo freaks – with Harlan, Tinker, Nat and Jeremiah around, it was going to be a fight from the beginning to the end.
Lead pack is formed almost immediately, and all the favorites and a few locals form the main group. I’m in a small pack of 3 or so, just trailing the main pack about 10 seconds in front of us.
Second lap and things are starting to break apart, gaps are getting bigger.
Third lap, I can now see Harlan and Jeremiah have broken away and Nat and Tinker are together. Course conditions are bad as rain hit the night before and left everything really slick. This was working to my advantage and I was closing the gap to Nat and Tinker.
By the fifth lap, I am on their heels and I can see that I am riding the slick trails a little better – but it is starting to dry out and the slickness is going away.
As soon as I catch up to Nat and Tinker, Tinker bolts away. I ride with Nat for a little while, then go off to chase Tinker for the next 5 or so hours.
Gap to Tinker went up to about 5 minutes at one point, then I got my second wind and shut it down to about a minute and half. It was enough that I was starting to catch glimpses of him now and then.
Lights come on, I continue chasing. I’m feeling good, but running out of daylight.
Last lap, I decide to ride conservatively. At this point, the slick roots are harder to pick up on in the darkness and I didn’t feel like going down (for about the 7th time) as I wanted to ensure a finish as well as top 5 in the USA Cycling Endurance calendar.
4th place, 5 minutes down on Tinker for 3rd.
Overall – Jeremiah took the win over Harlan in second who came in about 12 seconds later. Tinker third, Ernesto 4th, Nat in fifth (who took the win in the overall USA cycling Endurance series), and Andy Applegate in 6th.
Tough battle for all of us, great way to end the mountain bike season.
(check out the additional pics on my flickr account)