Saturday, May 16, 2009

Coyote Race Report

Back in Boise, this time for the Coyote Classic mtb race put on the great folks over at the Knobby Tire Series.  Before the race got underway I was lucky enough to see Wild Rockies Toby and Dick.  The two of them kept me honest the last time I was down here to race, and it was good to hear that they had killed it at Sea Otter.  At Barking Spider Toby managed to beat my less than a minute, and I was hoping that with a little bit of elbow grease and luck, we would be able to switch positions on the podium.  I went out to warm up and pre-ride the course, which was especially uneventful.  In due time all gathered at the start line, wished each other good luck, and waited for the word “Go.”

The start was a substantial climb on pavement and gravel, and sure enough myself, Toby, and Dick, were in the lead for the singlespeeders, and right up there with the pros.  I managed to pass Toby and Dick, but that became a mute point when on the first steep descent my water bottles were knocked out due to all the ruts.  Having lived in Tucson for a year I am hesitant to go on a ride without water, so I stopped and picked up my bottles, while Toby and Dick passed me.  I remounted and started off with a renewed sense of aggression, and managed to once again grab the lead of the singlespeeders.  The first section of the course was all doubletrack, and as expected I would put a gap on Dick during the climbs, then he would catch and pass me on the descents.  Turns out Toby had taken a gnarly digger, so it was up to me and Dick to duke it out. 

  We hit the singletrack, and at my first chance I passed Dick, and did my best to put some time into him.  I got behind some geared rider, who eventually let me pass, once he realized I had no gears and that we weren’t in the same class.  I kept riding as hard as I could, trying to put as much time into my lead on the climbs, knowing that I would lose time on the descents.  The doubletrack was in rough condition, and on a few occasions I thought to myself that those folks with dual suspension were onto things.  The descents also had a significant amount of deep ruts, and loose sandy corners, which made descending the course blind a little tricky.  I managed to avoid taking any spills, and even managed to hold off Dick, who was hovering at around 30 seconds behind me.

  I came off the final section of singletrack, and hit the final doubletrack climb.  As with any climb during a race, this one seemed to never end.  I was worried that the heat might finally catch up to me on this last section, and my legs would cramp up shouting “no more!”.  Fortunately lady luck was smiling down on me, and the start finish area came into view.  On the final descent I gave it everything I had, and managed to take the win.  30 seconds after that Dick crossed the line, and we exchanged congratulations.  In time all racers made their way across the finish line, folks chatted, and the keg was tapped.  We hung around for the awards ceremony, where all those who made the podium got necklaces.  Once the awards were finished all said our goodbyes, and went on our merry ways.  Next up on the list is riding in Sun Valley, GIDDY UP!  

Getting up on the podium.

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