Wednesday, June 09, 2010

2010 TSE - Day One

Day One consisted of a 10 mile prologue course that we would ride in a time trial format starting and finishing in the Boy Scout camp where we are staying. Riders would go out within one minute intervals between each other.

The day started like all subsequent days from here on out. Awake at 7am. Wander over to the dining hall for breakfast at 7:30am. Two to three bowls of Oatmeal and Granola with some orange juice. Wander back to the lodge we were staying in (Eagle Lodge) around 8/8:30am.

All fine and dandy, except this day we were not starting until around 3pm. Race registration wasn't until noon. Ouch. Some of us went back to bed. Some of us pre-rode the course. The remainder just kind of muddled about. I cleaned my bike and got it ready for the week. Went back and forth with Dicky as to whether or not I would switch my gear ratio between days. In the end I decided to pick a ratio and stick with it through the whole week. I chose what I ride here in Connecticut: 34x20.

High Noon finally arrived and we made our way over to the camp office for registration. Did our little thing filling out forms and submitting them. Received our 'racers packet' which consisted of a whole lot of cool stuff:

number plate with zip ties
two grocery bags to be used as aid station drop-bags
awesome Trans-Sylvania zip-up hoodie
awesome Trans-Sylvania full zip short sleeve bicycling jersey
propaganda from various establishments
WTB catalog
Visit PA license plate
and a bunch of other stuff

While at the camp office we ran into Rebecca and Greg. Introduced ourselves. Rebecca did a double-take and then Greg explained to her who Dicky was (she was having trouble putting it together).

"This is Dicky; The guy that has been blogging about you."

I then saw Harlan and went over to chat with him. Turns out he would not be competing in this event but will be writing about it for He came for the weekend with Janel. Got to catch up with Janel. Haven't seen her in about a year, since we were on the other side of the world in India.

Back to Eagle Lodge and more sitting around.
(Dicky saw that Cannondale on the Mini as a 'threat' and was all worried about it. Turns out it was a spare bike from another racer. Not a 'threat'.)

Photo: Peter

The prologue course looped around the campground and onto Sand Mountain road (the forest service access road) and climbed. At the top we made a left onto a short singletrack descent. Then a right to a gradual singletrack climb which leveled out and descended. Quick left onto Sand Mountain Road and down the road (still riding away from camp). Right off Sand Mountain Road to some sweet singletrack. This is where we started making our way back towards camp. Parts of this singletrack I remember being in the Wilderness 101. Left onto a horse trail which turned into more singletrack and dumped out into a parking lot that was halfway up the first climb. We're almost there. Down the climb we rode up at the beginning (Sand Mountain Road). Left onto a doubletrack which put us down to a creek. Right and ride alongside the creek through some rocky singletrack. Arrive near the camp office and ride around the lake to the finish line.

Who looks faster? All clad in white or all dressed up in black? We will soon find out...

Photo: Peter

My goal was to ride as hard as I could and hope that both Dicky and Greg would not catch up to me. Hearing Greg's background from Dicky I didn't think I had a chance against him. Deep down inside I had an overall goal for the week which was to beat Dicky. Something I haven't really been able to do in previous years (got real close in La Ruta '07).

Start order was myself, Dave 'fourth place' Cormier, Greg, Dicky and Peter. The climb was just the right pitch that I would have wanted a 19t cog on the back so I can stand up comfortably. Instead, I stayed seated and pedaled as fast and consistent as I could to get to the top. Knowing how long the climb is helped.

Just cresting the top of the climb up Sand Mountain Road.

I finally started catching some people when I got past the halfway point and felt the flow of the singletrack heading back towards camp (The W101 part). So much fun.

Onto the rocky creek singletrack and the 29inch wheels floated over everything. My Fox Fjork helped absorb the impact and I was able to pedal right through it and not loose much momentum (something Dicky was feeling with his carbon fjork).

44minutes 29sec

Good enough to take 2nd in the singlespeed class. Greg beat me out by 24sec to take 1st. Dicky came in 3rd about 30sec behind me. His 'winner white' outfit was not enough to beat me.

Not a bad way to start a stage race. Victory!

Dicky forgot how to 'use the force' and insisted on hitting Greg upside the forehead. No respect for fellow racers...


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