Another Mid West Fat Tire race this past weekend in Columbia, MO. There was a good turn out in Cosmo Park made up of mostly people not from Kansas City. If I had a dollar for every complaint I have heard this year about there not being local races I would be well to do, and then a race 1:30 hours away and 20 or so KC racers are there, hmmm. Anyway, it was raining a bit while we got registered. Travis and I changed into race duds and rode a lap. Even though we were splashing up a bit of water all in all the trails was still fine, and with the next storm missing to the south I could tell it was going to be in great shape in just a short bit. The sun came poking out and we all began to sweat immediately. Luckily we made a late decision to bring Amber along and with her water bottle handing up expertise, that would prove crucial.
A good group of experts toed the line, it was cool to have Josh Johnson on the start line, and Dave Breslin decided not to do the long haul class. The race was a quick start, a GT dirt coalition rider named Jonathon took of like a canon and shredded the opening descent, Dave was in 2nd and I was chasing them both in 3rd. Dave came up behind a marathon racer on a quick tight climb and could not get around, I carried momentum around them both towards the top of the hill and began to chase Jonathon. With Dave in tow we caught Jonathon fairly quickly and I went around him and made a hard dig on the climb to leave Dave. I had a bit of a gap going into a long climb that I thought I was going to big ring pin it up the whole thing, instead I was not looking down the correct trail and pin'd it right through the yellow tape. I scrambled up the climb on my feet, and Dave was with me looking like he was feeling a lot better than me. Dave rode behind me until we started the 2nd lap and then he went around, I tried to chase and kept pulling him back a bit on the climbs but awhile later he was out of sight. Time checks from helpful trail side observers had me anywhere between thirty seconds to a minute back, on my third lap I started feeling in a grove, a reliable source gave me 35 second gap up to Dave. I tried to raise the pace again but every time I did the heat felt oppressing and I had to slow down. I finished my fourth lap and there was confusion at the line if I had finished or not, Dave had come in a minute earlier-under the 1:30 mark-so he had to go back out. I came in right at 1:30-or so we are guessing-and so I went over to the shade of out pop up and began eating grapes. I really did not want to do another lap so it was OK with me. Behind me it was more confusion. The GT rider finished third, but there was some question about if he was on the right course the whole time. Chris Ploch was just behind him and he certainly was on the right course the whole time. Josh Johnson and Mike Best rounded out the paying places.
Travis Donn was in a knock out drag down race that unfortunately ended with the opposing rider not finishing due to mechanicals, but Travis did take his second W in a row. The rest of our KC crew all had respectable finishes, and most importantly were there.
After the lengthy awards, we all went and ate Shakespeare Pizza. The tales grew bigger and our bellies were filled.
Wednesday it is off to West Virginia. I will be sending twitter updates onto my blog about our teams progress. And as always you can keep up with the race with real time results at Granny Gears website. I will let you know how it goes.