Wednesday, August 5, 2009

6/12hrs of Stony – 2nd Place

I was originally going to do this race as a 2-man team, but Jeremy’s move to NYC had me rethinking the race. I have been feeling pretty good and have never done a 6/12hr race solo, so I looked at this race as a way to test myself. I registered online earlier in the week and then proceeded to get sick the middle of the week!! I was feeling OK Friday evening and figured that I would still do the race. I set a couple of goals for myself… 1 - Finish at least 100 miles 2 - Not cramp 3 – Not have to hike-a-bike! I prepared 12 bottles, 2 flasks of goo, bananas, and a couple Cliff bars. With everything loaded up the night before, Nathan and I woke up early and headed to Stony. It was a little different for me at the start than a normal race as I looked at this as a race against myself. The team guys went out first and then at 8:01 the solo guys took off. I rolled out at a smooth pace and quickly noticed that my bars were not square with my bike, so I stopped about a ¼ mile out and found out it was loose… (Long story!). I tightened it up and was going again. I changed my Garmin to read HR at the top instead of speed. I tried to keep it around 150bpm, as that corresponds closely to my endurance power. The first lap or two was a challenge to not go too fast, I kept trying to take the “edge” off of the climbs. By lap four, I felt I had a good sustainable pace and my HR was where I wanted it to be. Mike and Evan came blowing by be in the roller coaster putting perspective on how slow I was really going!! By lap 7 or 8 I could see my primary goal in sight and my nutrient was working well as even though my legs had no power, I wasn’t cramping. As I finished my 10th lap, I asked where I was in the standings and they told me 3rd and on the same lap as the guy in second. I made my first goal of 100 miles and had a chance at 2nd place. As I rode to the scoring tent, the guy chuckled and said that my last 5 laps had each been quicker than the one before… interesting. I pushed on and soon had Jeff Socia on my wheel who was in first for the class. He complimented my riding which gave me a boost and we rode together for a couple of miles until we hit one of the steeper climbs and I fell back. At this point I was talking to my legs as if they were my car and I was running out of gas with a gas station coming up at the next exit. As I was finishing up my 12th lap, I saw Brent taking down markers and he said that they called the race due to a storm that was blowing in. I finished up my last lap (which was the fastest of the last 7!) with a total of 121 miles and 9,000 ft of climbing in 11hrs with out cramping or getting off the bike for a second place finish out of the 8 guys in my class! Mission accomplished… and then some!!

I would like to thanks Laura Riffe for all of her help during the race… I couldn’t have done it with out her!!

Thanks to the Cannondale/RBS/Sandbag/Soul Cycles/Signoutfitters guys for cheering, it helped to keep me going!!

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