Monday, August 17, 2009

Race the Lake and kiss the pavement

Hey, if you work for Nikon please contact me. I cannot find a new download cable for my camera anywhere. The salesman at Best Buy showed me some $55 multi-cable that would work. Dude?
So, this weekend I skipped Downers and went for the money at the Race the Lake. Racing around a huge lake like Lake Winnebago sounded like a good plan and a crashfest.....and that is how it played out.
Jens and I got over to Fond du Lac on Saturday and met up with Camilla at her brother's cabin. Hit up the registration and then hit the lake. There was not too much play time available since the race started at 5:50am. So, getting up a 3:45am was going to come quick.
We actually woke up, had breakfast with a lot of coffee, and got over to the start. since all there of us were in wave one it would be easy to get out on the road.
The race took off fast and we had a tailwind all the way to the top of the lake. Teams like IS Corp, Wheels and Sprocket, and Frankie's team help to keep the pace high. A new course record would equal and extra $2000 to the winner.
Coming through the small cities on the way was always skethcy. Oddly places road pylons, quick turns, and oddly placed railroad tracks kept everyone on their guard.
Coming up to the big climb ($500 to the K.O.M) Ryan Baumann took a flyer. I chased but was feeling a little funky. BK came up and put a good pull too but Ryan had the clip-on TT bars on and it was paying off. I made once last pull into the climb when Frankie came around me and took off sprinting on the climb. I bridged my way back up to the front and worked on keeping the pace high. After hitting the top, the pace dropped and a lot of riders regrouped.
We hit a hard crosswind section and were now coming down the east side of the lake into a prominent headwind. Riding up front, a Wheels and Sprocket rider riding Zipp 808's came by me on the left. As he neared the front the wind caught his wheels and threw him into Jordan from IS Corp. We were moving at a good pace and it just happened so fast. Jordan went down and I had nowhere to go. I went down hard and then got hit hard from behind. Hard enough to break the headtube off of the bike of the rider who hit me. I was quite dazed and definitley had a slight concussion. I got up, put my chain on, picked up my waterbottles and glasses, and discover a flat and sliced front tubular. The wheel car was there but no one was helping. I took my wheel out and grabbed my own spare out of the vehicle.
Now it was time to ride, rate the wounds, and chase for the next 22 miles solo.
I caught on, became the "dick" who yelled at riders trying to formulate a working group in the winds, and we brought the who race back together. Another move went which looked dangerous. I decided I would try to bridge it but as I went a spoke broke. 5 miles later another one went and I knew I was in trouble once again. with the move off everyone sat up looking for 5-10th place. I took a right turn to the finish and the wheel felt good. However, the next left, at speed, indicated that my wheel was in an unsafe sprint condition.
In the end, Ryan Baumann won it all and about $4500. Frankie took a great third place, and I ended up 16th.
Cam took second in the women's race which was an incredible result and 20-minutes faster than last year for her. Plus, she hit $$$. Great job by her and she showed her strenghts.
In the end, I got some road rash, a post concussion headache, a new tubular destroyed, but a good time and good fun.
Strong rides by the IS Corp guys who helped with the chase a lot. Ryan for riding smart and taking it to the end, BK for always being an ox, and a couple of the Brone's boys for rising to the occassion.
We hit awards where Jens was third in his age group, I was first in my age group, and Cam was 2nd in the women's race. With awards done, we went back to the lake. Jens took off, and the rest of us went to eat some damn good food. A couple few beers, perhaps some bourbon and bloody mary's, and.......hell, the race was over by 10am! Sitting by the lake watching Cam's brother, Matt, and his friends kiteboard was pretty cool. A pet duck (Howard) running around, and just sitting around fairly sore from crashing still was relaxing.
Today? sore back, whiplash in the right side of my neck, bad bruising on my ass, and roadrash. errrr. I hate healing. A couple days off, massage, and rest are in order to heal up.
So, damn fun weekend and I am glad I went this way. Sorry if I was being a little too controlling in the chase group. I was just trying to find guys that had legs left to help in the chase. Someone had to take charge and keep it going. Great job by those who worked their ass off in keeping it together.
Hey, I need some sleep. Pictures someday! Ciao -Ian

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