Peak2Peak Mountain Bike Classic
In preparation for this year’s Iceman, I decided to add a little late season racing to my routine. Peak2Peak was on my bucket list and it was time to git ‘er done. Saturday, October 18th Jeremy Karel and I drove north to race at Crystal Mountain and represent the Founders Racing Team. On the way out of town, we detoured past Rick’s place to pick up the required post-race refreshment, Founders Centennial IPA.
Friday night had brought steady rain to Crystal Mountain. As we drove north, Saturday was not looking much better. 40 degrees and steady rain did not make me optimistic about racing on a wet and muddy course. Fortunately, the weather improved during the last 30 minutes of our drive and the rest of the day was rain free.
Pre-race, Jeremy and I were interviewed for Founders new media campaign. We had fun talking bikes and beer with Rick Fortier from Founders. Can’t wait to see the actual footage.
With the glamor work finished, my teammate and I prepared to race. Jeremy was racing Expert Single Speed and I was racing Expert 45 – 55. We both had 3 – 12 mile laps ahead of us. Earlier racers reported that we’d be dealing with a few mud pits, in addition to the required climbing at the end of each lap.
My race got off to a good start, the flat wide sections at the start of the course being well suited to my riding style. I dropped back from lead group as we hit wet single track. I hadn’t ridden single track since Ore to Shore and needed some time to work my way back up to speed. Not wanting to attract Josh’s dark cloud, I was cautious in the wet conditions.
About mid-way through the lap, I encountered the first of two mud pits. These pits, deeply rutted and full of standing water, required a run through the muck. Getting dirty is part of the fun! The lap finished off with a climb up the back of Crystal Mountain and a fun twisty decent to the Start & Finish line.
I picked up the pace for lap two with the goal of picking up a few spots. Several miles into the lap, the course left pavement with a right turn onto single track or two track. In an Alzheimer’s moment, I picked the two track and rode for about ¾ of a mile before finding myself on the golf course. Hmm, don’t remember this. I realized my mistake, took a U-turn, rode back ¾ of a mile and got back on course. After this error, I didn’t have much hope of getting a good result but rode hard and had fun racing with a few of the 55 – 65 guys. I finished 30th out of 34 in my age group.
Jeremy rode a strong race in the first two laps. By his own admission, he ran out of steam on the third lap. His very quick times in laps 1 & 2 were enough to put Jeremy on the podium in 3rd out of 12 Single Speed racers. Congratulations to Jeremy.