2006 Florida State Championship Series Race # 4:
Gone Riding really got me pumped up. This is the time to really get the new bike tested and make sure it is ready for La Ruta. You think by now I should have this stuff down to a science! Racing XC and riding the new carbon bikes is one of the best parts about being a Pro! The truth of the matter is the last time I raced at a XC race is longer than I could remember. I mean a Norba National is what I'm talking about... let just say is been since before 2000. Guess I forgot what they were like and what I needed to do to make sure I was prepared.
I tried to take a local race like a big National, but now that I'm 45 yrs old, it's like every race means a lot... and it's different then it used to be. It's still fun, but everyone watches every move and they are all out there gunning for me! Now I gotta work hard all year around, like Rodney Dangerfield say's "I get no respect!" Racing bikes is just hard work and don't let people tell you different. I love my job and I wouldn't give it up for anything. But I don't like to have bad races and I have high expectations for myself and no matter what age I am, I want to do my best.
Riding my Scalpel brings back the good feelings, especially now since it's a carbon frame. (Doesn't it seem like every bike is carbon these days??) I love my Six 13 Scalpel so much but I forgot how to set it up for XC. Also, when you race guys here in FL you'll remember "fast" and boy getting my ass kicked really woke me up and I finished 4 place at race #4. This is why I love racing bikes - fast racers who keep me coming back for more!
2006 Florida State Championship Series Race # 5:
I love Gone Riding races and now I'm hooked to do the last couple of races in the series. Dave Berger, the race promoter, does racing like a Pro. I mean great track, great people, great prizes, and good fair entry free. Even the Sr. expert/pro class got medals.
Race 5# I came ready and relaxed. I spent more time dialing my bike like I did when I raced XC full time. This was my forth time racing my new Scalpel and the tweeking made a big difference now. I love this bike and even though it's a standard medium size bike that anyone could buy it took 4 races to get it feeling like I knew it should.
I got second place and felt awesome like I knew I should..I worked hard to nail it down, but since I don't ride my Mt bike during the week, I put my bike on the stand each day after my ride and spent a little time looking for the position I remembered I loved in the past..Racing these guys in Florida makes it all worth while. Fast racers pump me up and make XC fun again - not saying it wasn't fun before - but now that I lived in Orlando Fl for over year now, the Fall racing season starts in September and ends in December. Crazy as that sounds, the summer here is tougher than a desert but with humidity like a relentless sauna. It's not normal to drink as much water as I've been drinking! I would not be a happy camper if I had to race in summer in Florida but the winter blues aren't so blue now that I could race "off season". Who need cyclo cross when you could races XC all year, YA MAN!
It is real nice to win but it's also nice to feel like you did your best for that day! I'm off to Costa Rica and feeling much better now that I got my act down.
Ride with your eye in front of you!