Kids don’t really grow up too fast. I mean, they grow up just as fast as we do, its just the rate at which they change is pretty quick. Trying to keep up with them and their wild antics, along with maintaining your house, dealing with your budget, taking care of the pets, dealing with work, and making time for your wife, life can be pretty overwhelming. Then, race day comes along and you get to forget about all of that, at least for a little while, and pretend that you are a factory sponsored racer. The adrenaline gets going, your heart rate starts to rise a little, your palms get sweaty, and the gun fires.
And they’re off……
I entered this race fatigued from a long training block. I labeled this race as a “C” priority and really just showed up to see where my fitness is at compared to everyone else and to support one of the best race series that we have in southern California. My plan was to ride the first 2 laps slow, without trying to “race” anyone before increasing my pace to a more aggressive endurance pace. Most of my rides lately have only been around 4 hours long, so 6 hours would have been a bit more than I was really ready for and I figured the slow early pace would have helped me ride strong through all 6 hours.
Maybe it was the wind, or maybe it was the heat. Maybe it was my lack of fitness at this point in the year due to some race date changes, or maybe it was just my competitive drive, but my place didn’t quite go as anticipated. I did ride the first 2 laps easy, but not quite easy enough. Then, when I increased my effort, I increased it a bit too much.
As the clock ticked on, the wind picked up and blew down the hills. This gave everyone a headwind as they were climbing up the valleys, which would have slowed the pace, but I increased my efforts here to keep my lap times consistent. The temperature also rose up into the 90s, which is a bit more than I was ready for at this time in the year.
Ultimately, about 4.5 hours into the race, I started to bonk. I finished the 7th lap with about 59 minutes left on the race clock. When I got to my pit I hopped off my bike for the first time in the race, dumped water over my head, and tried to go out for lap 8. By the time I hit the bridges climb, the time was 2:22, only 38 minutes left in the race and I had about 35 minutes of riding left (compared to my typical lap times), but my pace was slowing. I wouldn’t have enough time to finish and bailed out.
I checked results on my way in and I was listed in 6th after 6 laps. I didn’t look at lap times to see how far behind 5th or ahead of 7th I was. I didn’t stick around for final results. Madison was ready for nap time and it was back to being a dad.
*A little video from the day before the race. Race day passes by too quick to get any pictures or video.