What a day, what a week, what a pile of singletrack. Seriously, I don't think I've ever ridden as much singletrack in a week. Epic... honestly.
I started the day off by pulling on these bad boys, as a shout out to all my riding friends in Texas - yah Texas! At points in the course where the pace was off the charts and I didn't think I could get out of the saddle one more time to punch up a steep techie rise those socks actually gave me an extra bit of oomph. Sounds a bit silly but it's true.
Dave and I were riding for the podium again today and we weren't sure what was left in the tank but we were hammering as hard as we could. About half way into the race I knew it was going to be a good day because I was hyper-ventilating and still able to hammer the pedals without letting off the gas - right on the edge of insanity. Good racing for sure, for me. I'm pretty sure Dave had more in the tank than I did but we didn't talk that much because I spent a lot of time at the front (hyper-ventilating) just pushing the pace and reeling people in.
Most of the time I had no idea where I was. Going up, going down, going around, tight, s-turns, roots, rock faces, drops, ladders, I lost track of what I was racing on and simply raced whatever was in front of me. If I saw someone on the horizon I just got after them. At points I'm pretty sure I could have used a portable defibrillator.
So, how did it all turn out? Well as I sit here in the Normatec thinking about things I'm pretty sure I didn't have another ounce of energy to throw at Day 7, so I'm happy with that. As for results, we are pretty sure we got on the podium, we'll find out shortly.
Lots of stuff to process over the next few days, and a few beers to drink, and some laying around and some laughing to be done.
I know I've used the word 'Epic' quite a few times over the last few posts but that's the impression I'm left with after seven days of North Shore and West Coast singletrack racing.
I'm crossing my fingers that I'll get a decent bump in fitness from this event as I head in to 24hr World's Solo Championships in Canmore, in three weeks time. Lot's more to type but I'll end it here.
Thanks to Dave, my partner, who hauled, kicked and pushed my ass up a pile of very steep climbs over the last week. He drew the best out in me, that's a fact. I'm buying the first round, Dave!
Edit: so we did get up on the podium with a 3rd place finish for the stage, which was nice considering it was the last day and in my opinion the most intense racing for us based on it being a typical XC race distance as shown by our 2:14 race time. We ended up with 5th place general classification which I'm also happy enough with, though we did have our sights set on GC podium. The level of competition this year was stiff, not only fit racers but also very talented on a bike. Just making the time cut-offs each day is an accomplishment in this 7 day event, and to be in the top 5 on any day is a testament to excellent all-rounder mtb skills.
Even though my head's a bit fuzzy this morning from a late night out on the town with the racing teams, I've spent some time this morning looking at the last seven days worth of data and I'm feeling pretty good about my approach angle in to 24hr Solo Worlds in 3wks time. Perfect.
What's on the agenda for the rest of the day? Wander around to find another coffee shop and sit in the sun some more. Then lay on the grass for a while to watch the Whistler world walk by. Then have a nap. Then go get a coffee, then find some more grass to lie on, and repeat. ;-)