When I got out of the car for the pre ride I expected the course to absolutely be ripped to shreds, It was sorta raining and I really didn’t feel like getting muddy. But alas it was inevitable. I pre-rode with Aiden and Chris, we all noticed the distinct lack of climbing as well as lack of passing opportunities. It was going through my head that only NICA would have the audacity to have us go up a jump trail. I ended up doing 2 laps on the pre ride, one for scouting, the second one to see how much grip I would have operating at higher speeds. It was a really fast course, and I only ended up going OTB once on the pre-ride (Turns out drainage ditches off the course can be a real doozy). Besides that I was feeling pretty good.
I’m gonna do us all a favor and skip the part at the hotel (something about sourdough and a certain test?)
So Race Day. I watched the races before me and cheered on my fellow riders. Congratulations you all absolutely killed it by the way! But eventually it was time to warm up, I rode up and down the street a few times trying to get ready for the sprint that I knew was going to start my race. In doing so I lost track of time and almost ended up missing my call up. I didn’t, but I was the last person to arrive, let’s say I was fashionably late. Soon enough Coco called us up and started counting down. I knew the key to this race was probably the start, so when the countdown ended I took off. I did end up being first in the single track, but I soon lost it when I stuck a pedal and a Salinas rider passed me. I got on his wheel and off we went. I figured let him tire himself out then I can just snatch back the lead. Unfortunately my plan didn’t work, I got complacent and felt like I was putting down almost no effort for two laps. What I expected to happen was I’d blow by him on the third lap because I was still fresh. What ended up happening was whenever there was a passing opportunity he’d just sprint and take it easy whenever there wasn’t one (Actually a pretty smart strat for this course). We were doing intervals for the entire last lap. For those that don’t know me, I freaking hate intervals! Anyways I was always on his wheel and even managed to get in front of him on one of the sprints. Unfortunately, he got me on the sprint before the last flow section essentially sealing his victory. I crossed the line knowing I could have done better, but ultimately pretty happy with my result. I guess we’ll see how the rest of the season plays out. Hopefully I’ll be able to snag a couple of the races.