This race caught my eye way back in the spring. It's a newly established event, run by the same folks who put together the Bradbury 12. I haven't been to the Bradbury 12 (yet) but rumour is its very well done. On top of that, the trail network produced many positive reviews in 09' during an EFTA series race "The Millstone Grind".
Another appeal was that I hadn't ever done an endurance event nearly this long. The longest ride to date was the Hampshire 100 last year. That had me thinking I may not be up to the challenge, so a quick & short notice email was sent to the Bikeman team. Takers? Nada.. Just one team-member who chimed in that he'd be up there with his family. Ahh well... S'pose it's time to step up.
Plenty of pre-planning took place. I topped off my Stans sealant levels (and found my first ever Stans goop balls!!), fixed up a second complete set of wheels & tires, looked around online for recommended sources of replenishment, read some forums and asked a few folks whether or not that chamois creme stuff was necessary & just generally got all wound up strategizing.
Everywhere one looked there was a common them regarding these longer length races. "Don't start too fast". Alright then - that'll come natural. I don't start fast in those weenie sized 2 hour races anyways.
I also had to coordinate a place to stay as my wife and I were headed up to Maine to connect with our daughter the following Sunday. Where in Maine you ask? On an island that's a whole mile long with very little in the way of things like running water and stuff. Thinking entirely for my better half (maybe not all the way entirely) I shopped around online for cabins with lots and lots of stars.. Mo' stars is mo' better - right?
I found and reserved the last available cabin in what can only be described as flatlander paradise.. Oh the irony. Growing up in VT we surely had a little passive-aggressive thing toward dem' flatlanders. After grieving over my present state (that's a two-fer) I present...
Sterling Ridge Resort...
This place makes wonder if the LL Beaners ever up and duke it out with the Eddie Bauerers.
Our quaint cabin. Probably close to 1000 square foot of it. Where I come from - this is called a home. It really was almost too perfect. Lucy and I enjoyed the resort lifestyle as efficiently as possible. After all, I'd be leaving early in the morning, coming back late at night - then take off again the following Sunday morning.
I was enjoying the resort lifestyle so much that I finally broke down and burst out: "Why would anyone ride a bicycle for 12 hours!!? THAT'S RETARDED!!
While out there on the pond, Lucy felt it was the right time to ask: "So... would you be like totally offended if I like.. didn't go the the race with you tomorrow? I mean, it'd be like such a waste to not take full advantage this place". What could I say? It was either agree or drown her in front of all the flatlander lawyers who reserved early enough to book a waterfront location. I can imagine how the shoreline conversation would go: "I could get him down to 5 years.. with custody" - "Are you kidding? Look at that hair! - red heads induce mental breakdowns- I know an expert that can prove it".
Soon it was bedtime. I drank oh so conservatively. Aside from being woken by a serious thunderstorm with gale force winds - a good nights sleep was had.
The drive to the race was about 45 minutes away over Smugglers Notch. Purty part of the state to hang out for sure. I arrived about an hour and a half early, checked in and set up my feed / service station. Luckily for the folks camped out - they missed the storm 30 miles to the north. That'd have been interesting..
There is a short little section of road after the railroad bed. I pull alongside the leader and have to ask: "Who are you ?- I think you lapped me" - reply: "yeah probably, Greg Jancaitis" - I respond with a goofy grin: "Oh! Janky!!" He gives me a look like "Dude.. who the hell are you??" Oh, right... Not everyone knows everyone with general biking OCD reads Colins blog. I'm such a loser.
Here's the lap tally table:
Oh look! A Spearfish!! A bike made specifically for endurance type events. The kind of bike that helps with old man back pain!
Hope to have her built up real soon..