Our entire pre-ride crowd did really well and we all got to get up on the podium together. There was a pretty good group of solo women and it was cool how many different states were being represented. Rebecca took the lead from the beginning, followed by a Sobe Cannondale racer, and then me. I had no clue who the Sobe racer was as she does mostly Norba XC races, but she was fast-that's for sure.
At one point she was about 5-6 minutes ahead of me, so I tried to stay as smooth as possible in the tight sections ( sometimes I was and sometimes I DEFINITELY was not) and hammered as fast as I could on the flats and climbs. As I rolled into the pit area to go out on my last lap Ted told me that I had made up more time on her and she was only 2 minutes ahead. Aggghhh! I basically had to lay it all on the line to try to catch her. I would see glimpses of orange or red jerseys in the trees, would chase the rider down, and then would find out that it was a guy. And then with 2 miles to go I finally saw her Cannondale kit!
She had no clue that I was coming and moved over to let me pass when she heard my bike rolling up. Trust me, there was no time to talk :-) I was really happy that I happened to catch her near the last of the switchback climbs because I was able to drop her and ended up taking 2nd place by a minute! Talk about being close!!!
I ended up doing about 60 miles in a little over 5.5 hours. I was able to finish about 20 minutes early since I wouldn't have been able to get another lap in by the cut-off time. I followed Lynda's top secret nutrition plan and felt really great the entire time. My biggest problem during the race was trying to remain fluid while cornering tight trees. I felt a little rusty riding, but oh well. It was so much fun to be swerving through trees that I constantly found myself smiling even though I was also gasping for air.
Congrats to Rebecca and Fuzzy for taking the big W! I had a lot of fun hanging out with them this weekend.
I hope to do more 6 hour races this season. They are great for training because you can push it the entire time. And I actually feel pretty good right now. Tired for sure, and I'm sure my muscles will be feeling it tomorrow...but nothing like after a 12 or 24 hour race!
P.S. I have to send a HUGE thanks out to Ted, mechanic extraordinaire. He did support for Fuzzy, Rebecca and I and had his hands full feeding us and giving out splits. My bike worked perfectly the entire time and he made all of our races a lot easier. Thanks Ted!!!