My first year of racing finally came to an end last weekend at Jingle Cross. I know in a week or so I'll probably start twitching but, for now, I'm just happy to vegg out for a while!
The season was great, though. It started on Jan. 28th with my first ice race! I got second place with my single speed, studded wonder. It was as cold as the Grinch's heart, but it was a riotous good time. Then, in April, we were off to Belgium and doing the Amateur Flanders! That was definitely the most wonderful road race of the year!
My favorite Crit had to have been the St. Cloud Stage Race Crit...I got 6th, riding with an amazing group of girls, and feeling like it was all starting to make sense. Spring Cup Mtn Bike race was one of my fav's too - I got to charge into a sprint finish with Nora B! And close behind that would be the Cable Classic, where I took 2nd in W 25-29 Cat. It was so much fun charging around the WI trails on my little Single Speed! As you can see, these races were be for the defection....
My favorite TT's had to be all of the Black Dogs! It was the most amazing venue to race our bikes mid-week and spend more time building friendships. Black Dog was where the light switch finally turned on and I discovered how much harder I could push myself than I had been. I got to hang out with Ray & Mrs., Jimmer and Jordan, get into more trouble with Timmer, Jay, and Ronnie, and just be free some 9 hot summer nights.
With the Cross season just wrapping up, it's kinda hard to pick just one favorite. It was such a rollercoaster season - charging by without a will to slow down, weeks off for rest & recovery, great races, and one or two completely crappy races. Funnest Large-Crowd race had to be State Championships! I raced like cow dung, but it was the 2nd race my Dad's ever seen, the course was a blast, and everyone was out to cheer! Jingle Cross, however, was my all-around fav. The crowds were huge, I got my first ever prime, and I felt amazing on my bike both days (taking 5th in each)! On top of our fellow MN's cheering, Jay's dad came out and cheered us on as well!
The best compliment I got all season was at the Silver Cycling Year End banquet. I had started the season racing for Peace Coffee, but switched teams after a major explosion when I raced in Jay's skin suit at the State TT Championships. Needless to say, I wanted to support the team that was always supporting me....so I did. I raced my heart and soul for the Black n White this year, and learned so much from the other racers. Timmer taught me when to eat, Steve Knowlton got me to ride in a draft better, Jay taught me cornering and virtually everything else I could think of. At our banquet to celebrate the year's successes and friendships, I was awarded the MAA....Most Awesome Acquisition!!! Thank you so much SC, I will cherish this forever!
As for now, I'm ordering up naps, extra dessert, maybe another beer or two...that is until we have enough snow on the trails for some wicked clumsy skate skiing with Jay. It's been a long and fabulous racing season, and now it's time to rest up for next year. The racing may be over for a month or two, but not the adventures, so don't go far!