• Race Report: Breckenridge B68 Marathon

    The Breckenridge B68 was used as a tune-up race for the up and coming Leadville 100 in a few weeks time. Coach laid out some strict HR pacing guidelines which were to be followed for the first 4 hours. After that, I was at the mercy of how much I wanted to suffer. The race consisted of 2 different laps in and around the Breckenridge, CO area. Here is the race recap...

    Loop 1
    32 miles
    4,268 ft of climbing
    My lap time: 2 hr 47 min
    At 10 AM the raced rolled out of Breckenridge up Boreas Pass Rd. The start was led out by a pace car. Once we got about out of town a small group formed..there was about 10 of us. I actually dangled towards the rear of the group as the moderate pace along with my excitement for the race had me hitting the high parts of my pacing HR. I keep in contact, and once the singletrack was in sight, I moved up a few spots to get a good spot at the start of the true racing. The pace was pretty chill for the most part. A few riders took to the front and started to put down an effort. I just had to sit and watch them ride away. It wasn't until I got to the big climb, which I believe was up Sally Barber Mine, that I latched back on to the other racers in my race. Having raced the Firecracker 50, I knew how long and hard this climb is. I found a happy gear and maintained it to the top. I soon found myself riding alone, as the other riders dropped off my pace. Once to the top of the climb, I drilled it......descended to Tiger Rd.....then stopped at the aid station to top off the 3 bottles I was carrying. The later part of the lap had us racing on parts of the Colorado Trail. I though I was in the overall lead at this point....but I was not. As I flowed through the trail, I came to a meadow where I saw the actual leader of the race sitting by the side of the trail. No words or eye contact were exchanged. I just kept moving forward at a comfortable pace. It didn't feel like I was racing...but rather out on a weekend warrior ride. Once again, the trail dumped out onto a road for a moderate climb....then descent into Carter Park were the start finish was.

    Loop 2
    36 miles
    4,321 ft of climbing
    My lap time: 3 hr 25 min
    At the start of lap 2, I stopped by my pit I had laid out in the park. I grabbed 2 bottle of Cytomax, 2 bottles of watter, electrolytes, and 6 gels. As I rolled out of Carter Park and up Boreas Pass Rd to Boreas Pass, I sucked on the large bottle of water I grabbed during my pit. Since the road climb up to the pass was in good shape it allowed for fast speeds and the ease of eating a drinking on the bike. Once the bottle was gone, I through it next to a course marking, so it would be picked up later. Once to the summit of Boreas Pass, I descended a 1/4 mile then swung a hard right to bomb the singletrack to Como, CO. Having ridden this 2 weeks previously with Tostado, I had an edge. I knew what was around each corner and how much speed I could carry. I dumped out onto a gravel road to ride into Como. Here I stopped at the aid stations to refill 3 bottles and get in some more gels. The next 9 miles would be the toughest of the race for me. It involved climbing back up to Boreas Pass Rd. It was approx 2,000 ft of vertical....on a dirt road. The climb isn't really that tough, but it falls late in the race, that is what makes it tough. I settled into a pace that was a bit uncomfortable. I had know idea how close 2nd and 3rd place were to me. The only thing on my mind was get to the summit and throttle the bing ring back to Breckenridge. I got to the top and went right past the aid station. I just pegged it to the Baker Tank singletrack. This was a welcome sight....almost 5 miles...all downhill to Boreas Pass rd. I finally dumped back onto the road and rode back into Carter Park for the first victory of the year!

    FinishingThe "Finally, back on the podium" fist pump....and some post race reflection.

    B68 race hr and elevation profileThe ups and downs.

    Podium minus the 2nd place riderFirst in the 30-39 age group...and the overall race. Full results posted up here.