Hanging out, ready to sing some Blues

Monday, June 1, 2009

Mohican 100: The Flat Tyre Festival

Well fan, this past weekend we hit the Mohican 100 in the sweet rolling hills of central Ohio. Some of the nation's heaviest hitters with and without gears were there to strut their stuff. It was truly impressive especially with a big NORBA/USAC race occurring on the same weekend here in the east. Garth and Ryan certainly put on one sweet ass event.

Rain, rain go away!!

Oatmeal and eggs bright and early at 5am and by golly my rear tyre was completely flat. Instead of taking the chance that the Stans would not reseal I slammed a tube in that bad boy and by 6:40 we were on the rail trail with 100’s of racers headed to Loundonville. It was a sweet little warm up and a nice way to work the jitters out.

Organized mess of a campsite.

7am and off we go!!! With a $200 KOM prime less then a mile into things we went out hard. I didn’t have great legs but I was next to the peeps I needed to be with. We hit the woods around three miles in and we would stay there for the next 30. How sweet it is that? 30 miles of super fast twisty wicked fun single track and I was with a group that made up 4-7(including Gunnar) in the SS field and we were probably in the top 30 overall…ahh yeh. Not too far in I passed Gunnar fiddling with his bike -- something he always seems to do at the start of these long races. Sadly, this would be the beginning of a long luckless day for the both of us. I hammered away making up good time. I was passing when I could, but enjoying the fast pace that the geared dudes were setting. Then Ugh, a hiss from the rear wheel, flat #2 for the day and #1 while actually in the race. I fixed it pretty quick but sadly got passed by at least 70-80 peeps. Off I went trying to make up the time I lost. I was doing good but the traffic was thick. Most were nice and let me by but a few put their elbows out so admittedly I made a few not-so-Kosher passes. I felt 4 to 5 warnings was enough? After a 25-30 minute chase I caught the group I was with when I flatted, sweet! It was a hard effort but well worth it. Then Ugh, a hiss from my rear wheel AGAIN!!! Quick fix and repeat the above. I have the same guys within view again with about 2 miles left in the woods and flat #4 for the day and #3 for the race, CRAP!! The fire in my belly was gone but I keep going. By mile 70 I began to pay for those efforts chasing but I hung tough, made the best of the day and had a blast.

Betsy caught me on the roads and she and I rode together for many miles. That was super cool. And she dragged my single speed butt down that hellish 10 mile stretch of very unfriendly SS rail trail. Thanks Bunny!!!! She finally had enough of me drafting her so she clicked down on them silly gears and dropped me like a bad habit. Go Bunny!!!

By mile 80 those post flat tyre chases had taken their effect on my lil’ legs and my head was no longer in it to win it. Then crap, Gunnar caught me. We rode tempo on the last 5-6 miles of road and exchanged stories of our crappy day. Gunnar wins: 3 flats, 3 broken spokes, patched tube, ½ mile run the WRONG way for a tube, ripped the top off his Big Ait and actually was in DFL as the Course Sweepers caught him. Then he decided to turn in the screws for the last 8 miles of trails. So off we went on a Team Bi-atch drag race through some fine single track. He got away, I caught him, he got away, I caught him then we hit the rail trail and I thought/hoped it was done. Wheelie contest for the placing sweet!!! NO, two more mean hike-a-bikes, some single track and one very sketchy down hill. He gapped me by about 45-50 seconds and then went after Betsy. With only 50 meters to go Gunnar was able to pass Betsy, smile, and let her take it in for the win (now whether or not Gunnar "let" her win, gave up, or Betsy "whooped" him good is up for much debate). All of Team Bi-atch finished with in 90 seconds of each other. And yes, Bunny girled us.
We all are riding well even with the abysmal placing Gunnar and I recorded. Stupid flats!!! Seven total for us both.

Bunny: 1st women and maybe top 40 overall
Gunny: 10th SS and maybe top 40 overall
Chrissy: 11th SS and maybe top 40 overall

Betsy has a great interview in Velonews and Gunnar got the best press of his storied career.

Up next, The Tucker County Road Race Saturday and the Hoo-Ha XXC Sunday and then the 24 Hours of Big Bear…and then….the Gypsy Lyfe until CX season. Don’t be jealous -- just get out there and do it.

Nars hit a pothole 3 days before the race.  :o(

Big Ole thanks and shout outs:
- Garth and Ryan the promoters
- Mohican Adventures for letting us racers loiter on your camp grounds
- Cannondale, Uncle Rob and Matt
- Mammy and Pappy Schauer for cheering and feeding us lots of yummy food
- Shelly Brautigam for taking care of Jackie during the race
- The nice fella that gave me that third tube
- And all that came out for the fun and challenge of it all

Tired BFF Jackie

"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.

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