The 24-Hours of Big Bear, in some ways, is the OG of 24 hour racing format. It is no longer in Davis but it is still in West “by god”. And yes, our Director Sportif, Gunnar, did that OG race while his lovely bride was still in elementary school (ed. she was almost out of HS). I do believe there is a pic kicking around on FB. I’ll have to look into that. So thanks Laird for starting this wacky and hard racing format.
So the race…
I picked the short straw or something and got to do the first lap run, yippee!! Off we went. I got to my bike around 20th and hit the trails on my bike around 10th. I found my mark, Benji (a fellow fast single speeder), just up the trail and off I went.
We all rode pretty solid and consistent for the whole event. The boys from Kansas City (Star Spangled Bangers) who were in our class and the WV Night Club (a 5 man just for fun team) boys kept us on our toes for the full 24 hours with the KC boys creeping to an inch or 6 minutes of us in the wee-hours of the AM. Most of their team was equal to or a little slower then us, but man this one dude Cameron Chambers was putting in some crazy fast lap times every lap. It was rather impressive and frustrating.
Gunnar "Older than Dirt", Steve Heeel and Nate-Dog rode like champions— all A+ game, consistent and strong. I, on the other hand, gave a 100% but I am afraid I came up a little short and only brought my B or maybe B+ game. Whether it was the lingering illness from the week before or whether I only just rode “ok” not “stellar" which is required when others are relying on you, who knows. Maybe it was bringing a knife to a gun fight—a single speed against Pro geared guys. My laps were 2-3 minutes slower then I feel they should have been. My body was not responding to the efforts like it normally can and I was pretty sure Gina and JR weren’t gunna let me go out on my last lap (#5) because I looked so bad. And I am pretty sure I felt worse then I looked but I knew once I was on my bike I could get the job done. I dug deep and left everything I had out on the trail, taking many risks on the rocks, climbing hard and running all the SS-hike-a-biking on that final lap, losing little time, and giving Gunnar plenty of time to fix his two final lap flats with little concern.
Other Team Bi-atch notables is JR with his merry band of big boys crushing literally and figuratively all the clydesdale competition. Awesome job JR and Smokin' Fatties!!
WVMBA regulars highlights:
- WVMBA Dream Team Women 1st Pro/6th overall
- WVMBA Dream Team Men 1st P/ex men 1st overall
- WV Night Club: 2nd overall 1st 5 person SS something or other
- Waite Brothers and Pittsburgh Pro (times 2): 1st-3rd Duo/pro
- Old man Vernon, Matt M. Matt R. and Scott R.: 1st 45+, 10th overall and beat the 35+’s
- Chrissy B. Pittsburgh Pro 2nd Solo female
- JR and his crew: 1st Big Boy’s
- Cougars and Cubs
- And many more
Shout outs and big ole thanks:
- Biggest thanks to JR and WVMBA for putting together this motley crew of characters for the two WVMBA Dream Teams
- Robbie L., Steve L., Tim R., Collin, Chad L., Dan C., Jeff S. and all the others that helped and loitered with us fire-side
- Cheryl S., Cassie S., Sue H., Steve H. and Nate A. for joining with Team Bi-atch for this fun family affair…and winning
- The boys from KC: those guys are wicked fast and kept it interesting
- The WV Night Club: for being your bad selves
- Our Cannondale Factory mate Brandon G. crushing it in the solo class
- Laird and Grannygear
- And to all that came out to play. Whether you were in “it to win it” or just finish we all suffered together and it all hurts the same
"May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face" and may your wheels always find it safely back to the ground.