Today was the MN Mtn Bike series opener, the Freewheel Frolic. As was the case last year, rain had it's way with the course, turning the flat and flowing raceway into a tough and muddy mess. With all nastiness aside, I was super excited since today marked the day that Sophia and I raced as Experts for the first time! Bitch, please!
The course was so saturated - it was the slowest and sloppiest prologue I've ever done there. Trudging across spongy grass, spraying muddy water onto ourselves and entering the single track on the 1st of 4 laps covered in our 1st layer of mud. I got into the single track in third, but started having difficulties controlling my sweet Tomac early. My rear brake pads completely withered away instantly, but I didn't realize it until I lost control of my bike in a chicane and wound up in the trees. Still unaware of my lack of brakes, I crashed again around a turn at full speed. When I got up, I checked my brakes and found nothing. The mechanics of it still worked, but there was no resistance at all.
Only half way through my first lap and no rear brakes and just a hint of front brakes....I didn't even know that could happen! I tried hard to keep up my speed and stay back on my bike and rely on the front brakes, but they didn't last long. I kept losing control around the slick turns and made my own lines through the trees, slowing my bike like Fred Flintstone with my feet dragging through the mud and brush.
It wasn't long before my front derailleur bogged down with enough mud to retire for the day. Into my second lap, my cassette started bitching too, refusing to move all the way into a gear or allowing the chain to get sucked up and locked long enough to force me off the bike and correct it. By the last lap, I had 2 gears left, had been passed by almost everyone, and was just aching to finish (pun intended). I was cut up, bruised, bashed, and wearing about 10-20 lbs of mud on me and my bike. I was elated to cross the line and know the suffering was over.
I grabbed a beer and reflected on the fight with the rest of the hard-ass mountain bikers who dared to race the crappy conditions. I love this sport!
And to top it all off, our lil family of Tomacs did awesome today!! Sophia, proud owner of a Tomac Flint 29'er, finished in 1st of her age group and 5th in the Pro/Expert Women overall!!! Way to go, chica! You are awesome!
Hollywood finished a bitchin' 4th overall in the Men's Pro/Expert class and won his age group after blastin' out his signature hole shot. Love you babe! You're riding awesome!
I found myself on top of the podium, winning my age group, and taking fourth in the Women's Pro/Expert overall! DAMN!!!! My poor lil white fox needs a mechanic's love BAD, but I still had fun.
Once I finally got all the mud out of my ears and a$$-crack, I found that all the mud stuck to me had given me a whole new set of tan lines... I look like a speckled goon who got in a fight with a cat holding a baseball bat. Oi!
Can't wait to hose down my bike and prep for the next adventure!