Monday, October 25, 2010


If you like pictures of sweet Scottish girls look at last week's blog, today is about some mud racing and fun. It was so muddy I was thinking they should have added a surcharge to our entry fee. PIR (Portland International Raceway) has two coursed. The wooded technical course we use for the GP races and the Open behind the bleachers course we use for Cross Crusade. The Cross Crusade course needs to be muddy to be truly fun, and yesterday was all of that. The good thing is the sun would come out ever so often to dry and warm things up, then the rain would return. In my race we started in the sun and then it just poured. I had my contacts in and a couple of times mud got in my eye and all I could see was a brownish haze. They added a new older category this year so I get to race in the 60+ group. We start 15 seconds behind the 50+. This is an interesting group. The faster members have been racing for years and have similar skills to the pros, the slower ones are somewhat new to cross and haven't developed those skills, and believe me it is hard to develop new skills at the 50+ age. The faster 60+ racers have to navigate through the slower 50+ and then fight with the faster ones to keep moving up. Part of the strategy in a race like this is to pass at the right time so the racers behind are slowed by the traffic.
I managed a rookie mistake and came out of my pedal. So I started dead last. It took me a lap and a half to pass Ron and get into the lead. It was then a matter of pushing past the racers in front and getting some distance. Ron Strasser (the nicest man in bike racing) made me earn my victory. It was sweet to be on top of a cross race again. Last year I sat out most of the season with a ruptured disc. I managed to race at nationals but I thought of that as an honorary start. This year I plan to be fit and ready. This was a good step.

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