Anaconda Enduro Series Round #3 - Lysterfield

29 July 2008
Wet and Muddy    Final Lap - I won!

wow, oh wow.

What a brilliant day for a race!

So the day starts out...or maybe I should rewind further...

So the night starts out preparing my food for tomorrow and staying calm and relaxed but all the time thinking.  Bed time at midnight and I was not even staying up to watch Cadel in the TT.

I dont think I actually closed my eyes proper until Norm came to bed and told me that Cadel had come 2nd in the Tour.  Oh well, I could sleep now.

So the day starts out at 4:50am.  Dark, cold and wet.  At least a 2.5 hour drive to Lysterfield.
We do our usual stop at North Geelong Maccas where Normie gets his coffee, hash brown and Breakfast roll.  I went to the servo and got a drink and lollies for later on.

I tried to have a nap but the sound of the water under the tyres on the road was not as soothing as it should have been...most likely because I knew I was not going to be in the comfort of a warm car for much longer, but rather riding in it for 7 hours.

We arrived at Lysterfield at 7:45am and the rest of our Race Development Squad was there very excited and talking about the affects of the weather and what would the trails be like...and who was going to pull out?

 

Eventually, but too quickly I believe, it was 8:50am and I had done all I needed to and headed to race briefing.  Down to the start, and I actually thought about the start this time, worked out my line and stuck to it.  Went hard, but not TOO hard and came through the first lap in about 40th overall.  (not in solo, but out of all riders) So this was good as I did not have many people in front of me who were going to impede my journey along the muddy single track. 

 

My plan was to hit out hard for at least the first lap and see how I felt, go hard again on the 2nd and then see.
Well,  Norm told me I was first place after the first lap and said it was by about 2 minutes.  that wasnt enough to make me settle so I had to back it up with another flat out lap.  I think I was about 40 seconds at transitition due to my glasses needing cleaning and food being stuffed in my face.

 

Let me tell you about the mud...whilst the rain was coming down, my seat and chamois was so wet that I was slipping all over the place.  Forget about tyre traction in the mud, what about buttock adhesion?  I went over some jumps and logs and found I was losing total contact withe the seat big time and getting a little fright in the meantime trying to find where it was again.  So a wet bum was on the cards, as were muddy shoes, gloves, glasses, mouth, chin, chest, back, legs, lollies, bidon...everything really!  

 

The fun thing about the mud was riding in it.  Whilst the chain rings and chain started to make noises of protest, my Michelin XC Dry tyres on Harry(Hard tail - my Scott Spark) were spuing the mud out side ways making my path delightfully fun.  I was able to ride through all the mud and had perfect traction, whilst I was just letting the back wheel drift, it actually assisted with more positive cornering.  My motto today more so than any other day was " Stay off the brakes!" as there were slippery roots, logs and puddles that were itching to take under some unsuspecting NON rolling wheel.  I learnt a lot today, just keep riding and even when you feel you are about to lose it, keep pedalling, stay off the breaks, commit and baboom!  You're home and hosed.  Not unlike dry weather really...but I still learnt a lot more today as it was essential to put it into practice or have a mediocre ride.

 

By the 4th lap, the rain had stopped, my seat traction was renewed, my Torq gels  were going down a treat and I was coping well with my 500ml bidon being consumed every lap.  I used Torq powder and Gels  every lap and my energy never faded.  6 gels, 2 Torq Bars, 4 lts of Torq made up drink, 1 sandwich, some lollies and 1 small rice cream tin...oh and a couple of mouthfuls of Coke on my last lap.  That was my days racing food.  I will tell you about my POST race food in a sec!

 

...Anyway...the rain had stopped and the mud was drying up and it was like glue.  My XC Dry tyres were not fun anymore, and every pedal stroke was sapping energy from the legs at a rate of knots.  About 50% of the course was great, and the other 50% was this sticky mud.  I was beginning to wonder how hard this was going to get by 7 hours.  Single track was being spread out as people tried to ride the grass for traction.

 

So low and behold, in the wisdom and great organisation of Full Gas Promotions , I went out for Lap 5 and got diverted along some double track and then some dirt roads.  Woo hoo, time to stretch the back out.  Then ouch...the rocks and more rocks plus logs of the CommGames course.  but no mud.  ...and no switchback pooey climb!  ...and a nice fast bit to sort of finish off on albeit a bit of a climb back to the start. 

Renewed enthusiasm now...not just me, but everyone.  The sections of fire trail were delightful and allowed me to continue riding Harry(hard tail) and even ride for 500mt sections without my hands onthe bars, stretching and drinking but still riding at 22kmph!  I did enjoy the sections of single track with the mud, but was glad the decision was made for the sake of the trails and sustainability.

Norm was happy to keep telling me I was in the lead, but would not let me nick off quick, kept trying to hold me back and do silly things like lube my chain and give me food, Naughty boy!

I had so much fun and loved riding hard for 7 hours.  I was amazed that for 80% of the time I was in and over my E2 HR zone.  I only had one cramp in Blair Witch area near the fun jump, and I was praying that the cramp would be gone so I could do the jump.  Phew it did.  I just kept pedaling through it and could not coast for fear that the cramp would hook on nice and solid.

Thanks to all the awesome fellow riders, what a fun day and how nice you all were.
thanks to all the people who helped out in our Marquee and said cool things to spur me on
thanks to all the fine spectators out there who were also very supportive.
thanks to FGP for a great event.

top work and I love Youse all.

Sick, fully sick! I won!   

 

P.s: I had Mc Donalds on the way home: McAsia Wrap, Fries, Sundae with chocolate and caramel topping!mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm