not sure if it was an effort to start getting pumped for the rapidly approaching mountain bike race season or a search for an email I wrote about my old Landcruiser being stolen and returned only be stolen and returned again..... like a Ghetto Zip Car
in this self absorbed search I stumbled upon a race report on Poor Farm, a location that is hosting a race this spring, a location that I had forgotten that I had raced at.....

here is the report as it was written and sent to my fellow DCMTB members aka City Bikes Mountain Bike Team Members.....

the dust has settled
a few days have passed
but before too much time passes and all is forgotten I will try to
make a recap of Sunday's race at Poor Farm
once this is done I can focus on work as well as look to the weekend

Race at Poor Farm (another Dan's Race)
This report will be quick and to the point. There will again be no
need for a play by play recap of the events of the night prior to the
race. How much red wine was consumed or how I almost turned into a
pumpkin because I missed my self imposed midnight curfew are not
entirely relevant. That my son slept late, thus allowing me to sleep
late, almost too late, then his accidentally breaking a lamp as he
climbed around the room like a little hairless monkey is not really
part of the story either. My 18 year old truck's refusal to start and
that I did not get onto the road until 10am is not really any
different from any other race day so I will not drag on about these
things. Instead what is most important is that I approached this race
with a healthy attitude. All my late in the season riding burn out
malaise was pushed aside, any ambivalence towards riding and racing
was forgotten. What is most important on this day was my positive
approach to this race and my intention to deliver my top
performance. No intention of slipping into a groove and staying out
of racers way, as I too am a racer and I have as much right to fight
for position as anyone else.

with that all said here is the basic breakdown...

There were only six Clydesdales on this day, but those who were there
all had as much of a chance of winning as any other. As this course
is not that technical nor are there any long climbs there are no real
list of advantages or disadvantages to me or any of the other
racers. On a short flat course like this one it all comes down to
who wants it more. Each racer on the line is known to be a seasoned
rider/racer with enough skill and speed to rip through a course of
this style. Spirit can go a long way when there are no climbs to
worry about. At the start line there was the usual pre-race psych
out. As I spoke with each of the other riders I found out that no one
has been riding, no one is ready, no one got any sleep, etc....the
most humorous list of complaints came from Phil who said he was just
going to hang out in the back and see how he felt. Well. That theory
did not last long. When Dan said "GO!" Phil took off like a
jackrabbit! I fought just to keep up with him and only caught him as
he entered the single-track. We rode together for a while, enjoying
the competition and the camaraderie, but I felt I could go a little
faster so made a request to pass. That is pretty much how the race
went, I pedaled as hard as I could, on the first lap I was completely
unfamiliar with the terrain, thus over accelerating and having to
slam on the brakes as to not run off the course on each turn. Reeling
in the racers in front of me and fighting to find a good place to
pass (always trying to be courteous, even when winded), always
looking for an efficient line and a realistic top speed. With a good
attitude and feeling strong I was able to really enjoy myself. Tried
not to day dream too much, felt my speed drop a few times as I fell
into some of the classic day dreams (i.e.. me on Letterman, me as a
millionaire, me with hair, and the one that gives me the most energy- my son
Dean laughing) There were also the classic clogs in the single- track
pipeline (the Caterpillar Clusterfuck), but that is to be
expected on a single-track course of this design. The sound of tires
approaching from the rear always wake people up, this gets the pedals
going again, but it is frustrating when you want to go faster than
their current speed (as I hope I did not frustrate the Expert/Pro
racers as they lapped me on my last lap and tried to make a pass,
which I allowed at the first possible opportunity) But I was able to
make enough passes and get around the course fast enough to keep out
of ear shot of the other Clydesdale racers. Each racer is dealing
with the same list of variables. Everyone in each class needs to race
for the hole shot, then each racer needs to deal with passing and
being passed. As for the tight turns and unfamiliar
terrain...preriding is always an option, not one that I tend to
approach, but it is there for anyone who wants it. The week before
the race I had spoken with Swampy and few other riders and got a
basic rundown to the course's demands. Figuring it was a three lap
race, I could use the first lap to get acquainted with the layout of
the land.

The race went well. It was a fun course, great weather for riding and
racing, fall was in full effect. I had traveled with an assortment of
cold weather gear, none of which was needed. The weather was hot and
dry with low humidity, a great day for a spin on dry hard packed
trails littered with falling leaves.

It was a fun day. The traffic on the way back was a hassle, but it
was great to get out on the bike. It was also great to yap it up with
a bunch of my biking buddies. My times were strong. I managed to win
the Clydesdale Class by a couple of minutes and my time was fast
enough to have finished 4th in the Sport Vet category (aka The Three
Lap Experts.)


glad I was able to get out there
it was a good time
a great way to spend the day

last night I went ahead and put those wheels on my cross bike man! should
have done that months ago and am looking forward to hitting the cross race
at Reston this
upcoming weekend
hopefully I can bring a fresh attitude and race hard
although I can already feel the excuses brewing