I’ve been feeling a little philosophical about my bike racing and riding. It’s been going on for a couple of months. I’ve been enjoying this year and am looking forward to racing Whiteface on Saturday and ORAMM in July. (Though truthfully I am freaking out a little about ORAMM.) But really this year has lacked the inner intensity that last year did getting ready for Leadville. It doesn’t have that “‘F’ it the weather is crap for training and I LOVE it” intensity.
Whiteface is a fun race. I know the course. I know what to expect. But it’s getting to be predictable, so has lost the “can I do this” gloss. (Second climb: 4 hard 20% grade stretches, two right away, a false flat, a 3rd 20% grade, a longer false flat, don’t relax you are not there yet, one last really steep section, a long flat section, first aid station, 30 more minutes of grind it 6-10% grade, a final 100 yard 24% grade to the top. Long fast downhill. Yeah I got that.)
I am also excited (and nervous) about ORAMM. In someways its a good race for me. Long, lots of steep climbing. And in someways it’s not a good race for me. Lots of steep technical downhill.
I am decidedly not “fast”. (And I smile and feel funny about saying that since it is so subjective.) There is a very real reason why that is true and it’s not likely to change. It has to deal with the cards I have been dealt physically and at some point I will/may reveal why that is. (Though it may take a couple of beers to write that post.) I am racing with my brother at both Wilmington and ORAMM this year. I beat him last year at Wilmington. At some point he will probably become faster than me, though I will do everything I can to not let that happen this year! He will likely beat me at ORAMM as he is a better technical rider than I am. But there is enough uphill there that we will have to see. In all honesty, I doubt I will ever be anything more than a midpack racer, even in endurance races. Shorter XC races? Ugh. It’s just not a place where I can excel physically. (Well except when I race down 🙂 ) This doesn’t make these races “unfun”, it just means I am racing a different race.
So I sit here and deep in my heart I know what I really want to do next with my biking. I know where I am taking this whole experience. Yeti knows and we have been talking. Coreen knows too, but we are going to have to figure some things out to make it happen.