Fools Gold MTB Race
By fellow AMR Michael Coleman
I just got off of work at 930pm on Friday and I was rushing to meet up with my local shop owner @ Apalachee Cycles in Dacula. We planned to carpool the next morning and he gave me a place to crash at the shop so we could leave pretty early. Well most guys I know never sleep that well the night before a race and I was one of them. I probably slept for no more then 4 hours of sleep??? Up at 4am and out the door by 430 we went.
We both signed up for the 50miler and this was to be my first long distance race. The closest Ive done before was the 5 laps at Fort Yargo that made up 55 miles. I was pretty excited to be here and actually racing it for once, Im usually one of the aids at the sags but not this year. We pull into the winery and its dark and slightly cool, the parking lot we are assigned is a field that looked and felt like it was just cut. Cars upon cars are arriving and I go pick up the packet and head back to the car to clear my mind.
Well the time is arrived and I start walking to my buddies car and realize something did not look right on my bike. (#$@%) I forgot my water bottles at the shop!!!!! Well with my luck I had a spare never been used cheap knock off bottle in the car and my buddy gave me one that looked and smelt like it had been in his car for awhile. But a Monkey has to do what a Monkey has to do!!!
Now Im not going to lie, I knew I was not going to even come close to placing and I was more excited about winning the Turtle award for last and getting the free beer then anything. My goal was just to finish!(Mind you this has not been my year for racing and training) Off we go and I start spinning and spinning. It might help if I tell you I decided to ride my Niner S.I.R 9 SS with a 32x21 and yes wait for it……. FULL RIGID!!!!! The fire roads were fun and dodging the military vehicles and locals was fun, but the sound of low flying helicopters almost made me change my bibs!!! For the first half I felt fine, my quads were getting alittle tight and I knew they were slowly about to cramp on me, but I kept pushing. When we got to Bull Mtn that’s when things got real for me. I cramped like I haven’t in sooooo long. Down I go and I reached for the packet of mustard I was told to take (now I was told this would help, I am still on the fence about it though), and sucked it down like a gel. I still had yellow in my beard when I walked away. Bull sucked, I was craving a front shock soooo bad I was ready to go Angry Ninja Monkey on someone out there. I came to the 3rd sag and just threw down a soda and took off, Jake Mtn was waiting for me and I didn’t want to disappoint. By this time I started to feel a tight sharp pain in my left knee cap and this had me kinda worried. So I went a little slower then normal. I had my first of two mechanical's that day, and they were both the same problem. All that descending loosened up my saddle and it kept popping from the post and going straight up on me. Fixed the saddle and kept going and going. Crossed the wonderful creeks and finally met up with this lady that was in the same situation as me and just wanted to finish. We stayed together till the hills, she would lose me going up and I would catch and lose her going down. 4 miles to go and its all fire road and regular roads, im by myself for now until I get about 2miles there and I spot my friend. I finally catch her on the last creek and we both shot up the grassy hill and I just BARELY snaked past her. But we both finished and I came and landed on the ground still amazed I finished my goal. My eyes started to water cause I knew down in my heart I was racing this last one for my grandmother who is very sick and I wanted her to know that her grandson did this in her honor.
But like I said this is prob my last race in Georgia, I move next month to start a new chapter in my life. I just signed on to work at Lynskey and I will be moving to Chattanooga, Tenn. Its been great being a Monkey, and maybe I’ll be able to spread the word to Tenn and maybe score a sweet Ti 29er ;) - Michael Coleman
Race Report Joe King-
It was really great to be able to hang out in the AMR tent with a few teammates this weekend. I raced the 55+ 1/2/3 and was squashed like a little bug -- and I'm thrilled about it! The past two years OPS (old peoples syndrome) has kept me away from racing. The list of OPS complaints is far too long to go into here. Most people know about my frozen shoulder which is otherwise known as hair-dressers disease and doesn't usually inflict us guys. In any event, that's gone but several other OPS ailments have persisted which have kept me from sprinting or high-intensity workouts of any kind. When I toed the line Saturday morning I didn't know whether or not I'd be able to finish a cross race. If you've ever raced crossed you probably know there's no such thing as a low intensity cross race.
I was so very thrilled to finish strong both days. My placings were toward the back indicating I've got a long way to go before getting back to where I was two years ago. The course was similar both days and not having practiced skills much I was conservative with all of the technical bits. I was really happy to be able to ride down the hill the second day -- realizing that it was getting less slippery as the day wore on.
The heckles were abundant for the aero helmet with the face shield in place on day one. The optics of that shield are very good and surprising because this was the first time I've used it. That was the fun but when I put it on for day two, one of the magnets that hold it in place had come off the shield. So day two was without heckles and I sort-of missed them. My placing on day two was a bit surprising. It seemed to be well executed but I finished further back. Oh well, we'll see how the WCA races go in October.
**** More photos and race reports from Trek CXC Cup to come in the next few days. Check
Race Report by Derek Slates.
It was great day for a cross race. The venue was on the Lake Geneva Youth Camp grounds. This place is full of cool things to do, and made me wish I was a kid again. Zip lines, ropes courses, and other types of activities.
We had a good amount of rain during the week leading up to the race. The course was mostly dry, some really good off camber tight turns. Most of them faded away from the curve making your line chose very important unless you wanted to wear course tape.
The start of the race was in the “down town” area of camp. With camper housing on the sides, it felt like you were at a tourist theme town. I started in the last row with all of the fun people. The course had 3 large rollers meant for mountain bikes, very tough to ride smooth and gain speed on a cross bike. 2 different spots with barriers, ¼ mile straight mud ride to a bridge, bypass drop down on the left into a ravine, long hard pack pea gravel climb, a couple wide open drag strips and a sand pit that was nice and loose.
I was running behind, was able to sing up with 30 minutes before the race, and get geared up for a quick pre-ride. I was amazed at how fun the course was on the pre-ride. The only thing I did not like was the bridge over the ravine. With the mud line leading in it was hard to carry speed. I had to unclip mid bridge. I watched 3 other people attempt it and stack it up. I decided I would just dismount early and run up. I did not notice the ride around until the race which I took each lap. Now I booked it through the rest of the course not wanting to miss my start. While passing the pits I was able to heckle Jay who was getting a final blessing on his new Boone. I got to the line just in time to catch my breath.
Race Report by Derek Slates.
See Race Report by Muse Davis from this race on the previous post.