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Monday, July 8, 2013

IMBCS #3 - Seven Oaks


This weekend we were finally able to race in Iowa again, for the first time since May! We headed to Boone for the IMBCS #3 race at Seven Oaks. This was my first time riding this course, so I was really happy that I was able to get in a decent pre-ride. These are some very technical trails! They were built on a ski hill, so there was plenty of elevation change, and the trails were pretty narrow with the majority of them being off camber. This made for some pretty scary downhill sections, with some super tight switchbacks. You really had to squeeze the brakes to make sure you didn’t fly off the trail and go tumbling downhill!

Photo by Angy Snoop
My goal for the race was to make it into the single track first. We started off on a long section of gravel and I was in the lead, and then right before the singletrack another girl jumped in front of me to go in first. I was holding her wheel and could tell that while she was slightly stronger climbing, that I was better in the technical and flowy sections. Before I could try to pass, we came to a part where there were two bridges, with the second being much skinnier than the first. Sure enough, she missed the second bridge and went into the small dip. I’m not sure if I was just distracted by this, or if I was trying to move slightly to the right to give room, but my font wheel slipped off the narrow bridge and I summersaulted over my bars. I jumped up and retrieved my bottle that had slipped out (with the temp in the 90’s, I couldn’t go without!). Of course, as soon as I crashed, the other girl took off as fast as she could. I got back on my bike and tried to chase her down, and noticed my handlebars had slipped and were a little crooked. It wasn’t too bad, so I decided to keep chasing.

 Thanks Angy for cheering me on and getting me to
smile! Photo Credit - Angy Snoop.
I was doing pretty well and then took a downhill turn too fast and shot off the trail – I’m blaming the crooked bars :) I was able to twist them back slightly and hopped back on only to notice they still weren’t straight. I stopped again, and finally got them straight. By this time all the comp men had caught up and were passing. I was super frustrated but continued on, not yet even half way through the first of three laps.

All the photos of me smiling are deceiving, I was
suffering out there! Photo Credit - Angy Snoop.
I wanted to give up so bad, but knew I couldn’t let myself down like that. So, I wished for a mechanical instead (yep I feel bad for even thinking that). I somehow made it through that first lap and my second lap went much, much better without any incidents. I had to make a quick stop going into the third lap for another bottle. It was ridiculously hot, I don’t think I’ve ever gone through this much water during a race. I was feeling pretty good though, and surprisingly, the third lap seemed like it went by the quickest. Toward the end, my husband who was racing the men’s cat 1 race caught up to me. I was so happy to see him in first place, and with a huge gap to 2nd place!
Against all odds, I finally finished, and came in 2nd place. While disappointed with how the race went, I’m at least happy that I was able to finish. I proved to myself that I could suffer out there and have several problems, but still stick with it and not give up. That’s what I’ll take from this race!


It was great to see all these lovely ladies at the race! Aaron was having fun
 hamming it up for the camera too.

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