"...you realize you now have to win swanson!?! :)"
one little comment, rattling around in my head. motivation was high. ability seemed to be present. mission accomplished.
morning started off with a mighty fine hy-vee breakfast. bacon, eggs, hashbrowns & sausage. seemed to work good for platte, why not again. i'm not a big fan of late races so the 2:00 pm start had me a little worried. I've raced full circle, 7:30 am start times, 4:30 pm start times. i find the late races tougher primarily because it gives you way to much time to worry about food and prep. unward.
during the pre-lap, i got to thinking that this is episode three of the 2007 edition. usually takes me two races to blow things out. tranq, platte, bingo. confidence up.
we start two minutes after the expert open, much better than the forty five seconds we had at tranq. at the whistle i get off the line good, leading through the grass when t-bone comes cranking by and insides me into the first turn. he continues to crank it out and strings out the group leading into the singletrack. i get gapped off but then t-bone rips into the first hairpin, clipping out and laying it almost flat. a near miss but he stays in front of me. nate & tim are on my wheel, clark not too far behind. t-bone continues to heat it up and before i know it it's t-bone, me and nate.
first double track and i decide it's time. roll by t-bone, nate follows, time for an expert hunt down. nate and i start rolling through picking off the tail end of the expert field. some guys give us room, others not so much. lap one, two seconds slower than the expert open leaders. 3rd place (tim) is now over a minute off. don't see t-bone or clark, gotta keep rolling.
lap two: early on, nate digs a pedal and loses my wheel. from that point i start taking little bits away. the remainder of the lap seems to be pot marked with sketchy pass moves and unwanted hold-ups. the only bummer with leading early on is you never really know what's going on behind. lots of overlap on the course gives me little bits of information as to what's unfolding behind. tim is by clark with t-bone in tow, sam is unseen, no sign of munson. i begin wondering how much nate has in him.
By the end of lap two i'd worked my way up into about 6th overall, entered the singletrack chasing kw, about one and half back from kev. looked to have more than a minute on nate and no one else in sight. time to put it on cruise control, stay focused and not make mistakes. eventually got kw by mid lap and cruised home for the win. nate rolled through with a sweet ride for second place about two back. tim just held off clark at about four and half back. t-bone got close to those two while sam & munson rounded out the top seven.
feels good to have put it together. let the debate rage, expert open or singlespeed?