CCCX 2/9/2020 – Tristan Schonfeldt-Aultman

Photo by Paul Gilbert-Snyder

I was very anxious and intimidated by the CCCX race. It was my first race and I was not feeling prepared to race against such fast people. I began to feel better after warming up, but the thought never left my mind. Am I good enough?

After we all lined up at the start, each group of riders shot off as the whistle blew. When my group left, we all started going really fast. We tried to get ahead of one another before the entrance to the single track. When I got to the single track I was behind Jens and continued to follow him for a while.

However, when a sandy turn appeared around a corner I did not slow down in time and slid out. I quickly got back on my bike and continued ridding, but three people had passed me. Soon later, I fell again when I followed someone through a grassy corner which exited into a sandpit.

By the end of the first lap Finn was right behind me, and stayed there for a long time, encouraging me. When I reached for my water bottle, it was not there. I knew then that it had fallen out when I had fell. My spirits dropped a little, and I considered what it would feel like to ride the rest of the race without water, but luckily Finns parents had seen that I lost my water bottle and gave me another one. This made me so happy, and I was prepared to push on.

After Finn had passed me and I rode into a bush and fell again after a turn, there was a big gap between me and anyone else. I thought I only had one lap left, but I actually had two left. I had used most of my energy for that second to last lap and ended up going slow on the last lap. Ridding this fast for so long was completely new to me. It was much different than cross country, but it felt easier and more fun.

Suddenly out of the blue, somebody appeared behind me and passed me. This was the last part of the race and I was determined to get in front of him before the finish line. I kept following him at a distance, but right as the end was approaching I passed him at the top of an uphill slope. I sprinted to the finish line and finished in 7th place, I was happy with the outcome of the race. I look very forward to racing again.