Today's stage at Tri-Peaks finished on Mt. Nebo. This road is.....well, let me tell you how it went down. We took off nice and easy and the pace stayed fast but easy. Health Net took over the train and chased anything that got away. Coming through the first feezone a Healthnet rider plowed into his soigneur leaving both on the ground and the rider not getting back up. Not cool and I hope all are O.K. Anyway, we hit mile 64 and were at the point where everyone was getting ready for the climb. I was all on for this climb. I hadn't seen it but I could feel I was going to like it. So we are rolling and I move up to the front quarter of the field for some good positioning. I am up there for a couple of minutes when there is an instant pile-up in front of me. I got into the BMX skid and was avoiding it all well until one bike flipped up in front of me. That left me going over the bars and onto my back. I sprung back up, checked my chain, remounted, and got going. My right shifter was tweaked all the way in and a bit beefed up but still working. (Thanks SRAM for some durability). Here I was again, chasing. The story of the last two weeks, and right before the damn climb.
I got to the climb and instantly fell in love with it. No matter what people say about the Mt. Nebo climb I thought it was one of the greatest climbs I have ever went up. It starts off like the Madera Canyon road in Tucson before turning into a sort of Flagstaff in Boulder. After that it turns into a nutty version of Magnolia Rd. in Boulder with switchback after switchback (love the 11-26 SRAM cassette set-up), and finishes like Lookout Mt. in Golden, CO. Too freak'in cool. Really, after I realized my knee was in good shape after yesterday's crit. all I could do was anticipate this climb. I wanted to come into it with the big guns and give them a go. I had a top ten in my legs today. Anyway, "The Baj" won it with Baldwin coming in second. Two dudes from Boulder who knew climbs like this.
I am pretty frustrated about the end of the stage. I climbed it fast but not against the guys I most wanted to challenge. Oh well, after bug bites and messed up knees I should be glad I even finished.
Injuries have compounded to a newly bruised left knee from today's crash with some serious tire burn. No blood, no loss of skin, no bones protrouding from my body, and a bike with minor injuries.
Now I am at a Holiday Inn Express in northern Kansas City, MO. on my way home. Tomorrow I will get home, unpack, chill with the cat, and go on the local "chick" ride to get my travel legs out. Next up? Maybe part of the Quad Cities weekend. We'll see. Ciao -Ian
Damn, I wanted that climb today!