Race Report: Gunnison GrowlerJeff Kerkove 5:10 PM
The Growler continues to elude me....for whatever reason. Third time was not a charm...either was this time around, number 4. The course on paper, is a simple 2 lap format which totals 64 miles. For some reason every time I race here I can't put 2 good laps together. It's either the 1 lap that is good and 2nd bad...or vice versa.
Well this time around, the 1st lap was fantastic...best lap I have ever had at Hartman Rocks under a racing situation. I was sandwiched in between last years 3rd place rider, Pete Weber and all-around bad ass, Doug Johnson. I was well within the top 15.....right where I wanted to be for Lap 1. Knowing how hard and difficult Lap 2 would be, I rode conservative....not digging too deep. The plan was to negative split the laps...pick up the pace on Lap 2.
Lap 2 began with a steep climb up the 'Notch', which is seen in the photo above. The first 1 hour of the 2nd lap was great.....the 1.5 hours after that, no so much. I had the motivation and the desire to push, but had no power...which is a sure sign of training through the week and not tapering for this race. So, over the process of not putting out some good power, I began to go backwards. It wasn't until about 1 hour from the finish that the legs came back around.
With the mojo flowing like on the 1st lap, I picked up the pace and began to chase down those who passed me. In the process, about 5 miles from the finish, I hit one of the many sharp rocks and shredded the rear tire. With riders breathing down my neck, I opted not to change it and ride the rim and flat tire to the finish. So, for the next 5 miles or so, I would ride the flats and downhills, and run all the uphills. I managed only to loose 1 place riding the flat....which should would have been worse should I stopped to fix it.
In the end, I finished in 6 hours and 23rd place overall out of 200+ riders. Next up is CTR training and the Bailey 100.