Hump Day!

Hump Day!

No miracles… instead the NEW status quo!

After the awards ceremony and stage briefing last night the skies opened and a gentle rain set in. I didn’t stay up to see how much it carried on since I have endured enough rain in my life to not lose sleep over it. I was a little relieved though because the bluebird weather we have had all week here in NC had me thinking the “streak” was over. When I say “streak” I refer to every race I’ve ever done east of the Mississippi River has involved rain and mud in some capacity. Oddly the Pacific NW has this reputation for being rainy when in fact in rarely if ever rains during the summer. This is apparently never the case out east!

Today was an early riser, which as most of you know is about the best way to give me a case of the melancholies. Of course the rain didn’t help, or the significant drive to the finish/shuttle. or the hanging around waiting for the shuttle to the remote start, or the hanging around at the remote start. I love this race and I am totally on their side when I say that today’s stage seemed like way too “much ado about nothing” for them as an organization. I would rather see them use their awesome resources on doing what they do best!

As a third time Pisgah participant, I know Todd and his crew are very thoughtful about the courses and all the logistics and so it is important to clarify that they produced today’s stage impeccably. I am just not sure it was really worth all the effort and execution on their part. Afterall, we are bike riders and for the most part we don’t mind riding our bikes a bit more in general!

We ¬†got rolling downhill with almost zero warm-up, and then went straight uphill at mach seven. Well, that’s what it felt like to my depraved energy system or circulatory system or whatever the latest diagnosis is. My personal diagnosis is that I felt exactly like yesterday which just wasn’t good enough. I immediately lost time on the uphill and then was in a bit of traffic down Butter Gap. It was muddy and a little slick but the trails were pretty non-technical by the Pisgah standards.

The dude destroying his front wheel and blowing up his tire in the creek crossing right behind me was pretty awesome though! The rest of the stage consisted of a lot of gravel roads, an #enduro stage “down” cove creek, and a root infested climb up Daniel Ridge. We finished back where we started the morning about four hours later despite only riding our bikes a little more than two. I say ride to the start or ride something else and save all the shuttling hassles and time waste but again those who know me also know I pretty much ride to the RIDE whenever possible.

The usual protagonists were off the front all day and Mr. Turner demonstrated that he is truly the King of Pisgah this year with more total domination. I finished 4th again further proving that I hate the limelight and podium time and would much rather dominate the back country as an introverted trail boss. As I alluded, the #enduro wasn’t really my cup of tea (not that it ever will be…) so I checked out early but enjoyed the massive bath in the creek crossing afterward! Interestingly, I still made up time and now have a real shot at the #enduro podium!

Tomorrow is the “BIG” day and my favorite stage on paper. While I have ruled miracles out, if anyone has one to spare I will take it. Otherwise I am going to thoroughly enjoy rumbling down Pilot Rock after cursing Squirrel Gap and Laurel Mountain just because!

Cheerio!

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