First up, a quick shot for Bernard. This bike has got it all – Paragon Rocker dropouts (more on those on Monday), s-bends, giant head tube for use with a tapered steerer fork if needed, rack and fender mounting points, etc. And it’s huge – almost a 26″ toptube and a 22″ seat tube, because Bernard has an astounding 38″ inseam. So it’s a bit of a tank – 5.5 pounds. C’est la vie – this sucker will haul kids, groceries, and whatever else and still be fun to ride offroad, which was the goal.
Second, a brief race report. Sarah and I talked ourselves into doing the short track at the CU research park on Wednesday night. It was quite a butt-kicking, as neither of us is in shape (nor generally inclined) to short, flat power races. Sarah fought hard but ended up 12th of 13 (weirdly enough, the 13th place woman is not shown in the results). She had fun, though, and I’m sure she’ll be faster next week. She was holding her own quite well on all the bike-handling sections of the course, but losing time like mad in the straight sections.
My own race… well, it was pretty humorous. I got my usual lousy start and commenced battling with the same old crew of 30-something dudes that I always do (Matt “Paco” Pachocha, Brandon Dwight, and Ward Baker). We all seem to get older every year, but not any faster. In any case, I was having an ok race and was looking to possibly crack the top ten, when the first crash happened – on one of the only uphill sections of the entire course, when I leaned a little too far over making a turn (and still pedaling) at the crest of a tiny climb (thanks to Ken for the photo, not sure if this is when it happened, but you get the idea…) Yep, pedal in the dirt, Walt on the ground. A spectator commented that “I haven’t seen anyone do THAT yet!” Thanks. Sigh.
Not a problem, I only lost one place, and the gap I had put into Ward was, well, totally gone. Final lap rolled around and I was looking to make up a few places, so I took some chances – and blew another corner. This time I fell over right next to a dirt jump that someone had been working on. Well, ok, actually I fell into the hole that they had dug out next to it. And there I stayed, clipped in, on my back, feeling sort of like an inverted turtle waving it’s legs in the air.
Finally, accompanied by much laughter from all who witnessed it, a spectator helped me get up (I’m not sure how long it would have taken, otherwise!) and I finished the race having lost another place or two (I ended up 14th of 29).
So when people ask me how the race went, my standard response is now “I put on a hell of a show!” Then I hope that they don’t ask for any more information…