Friday, December 11, 2009

Bend Race Day 1

Bend is still COLD today.  Today's races were some of the older masters championship events,  and a gaggle of "B" races.   I don't seem to get the concept of a "B" race here,  as I saw several ex national champions in the few rows around me.   Guess it's just a "hot lap" race for everyone.  The Colorado contengent is REPRESENTING here already.   Gary Thacker took 2nd in the 55-59 championship (then raced with us in the "B" race......)  Michael Robson took 2nd in that same 40+ B race.

3:30PM start,  so it was COLD (20-ish degrees...) and DARK as well as ICY and slick.  Hills you could ride at the noon course inspection were not so rideable by then.  Some of the descents were into the out & out frightening catagory.  165 riders lined up for the B race.   You can imagine the chaos.   Going in with NO recent racing,  and seeing who was in the race,  I just went for the go steady and stay up approach.  Managed to MOSTLY stay up,  outside of a nasty spill when 2 of us hooked ruts and tangled on THE steepest,  nastiest drop.  Our chief videographer says she has the whole crash on tape,  too. (Sore hip &B knee from that one...).  Ended up 74th of 78 "finishers" at one lap,  by holding off the front guys till the line on THEIR bell lap.  Everyone else got pulled.  It was Chaos.  no other word for 165 guys hitting icy hairpins and drops all at once.  Was  pretty obvious some of the folks were not that comforable on snow & ice.  LOTS of silly crashes,  and not one but TWO ambulances were tending people on the course during the race,  with one poor guy on the ground getting EMT attention the whole time.  NOT good.

GREAT course up here,  even as slick as it is.  Technical, Twisty and  FUN.  everyone in the "Todd Colorado Crew" tent after was so giddy it was scary.  Having Todd Gold & crew here is FIRST Class.  You want for NOTHING at the reace.  Like being on a pro team.  Nothing my old,  slow Cat 4 self has ever experienced.

Great food & atmosphere in Bend as well.  They are putting on a great show for Natioanls,  in a cool town.  Saturday is the next race for me,  8:30 AM in the cold for 50-55 Championships.  Again,  the goal is to only get lapped once,  and on the last lap,  so as not to get pulled,  we'll see how it goes.  Forecast is warmer (Low 30s) with "ice pellets". Oh Boy,  some lube over the ice. Conditions here are going to be on FULL for the duration it looks like.



  1. Nice Dale..glad to hear that you got further up the road than I did


  2. Pretty impressive people. All of you. Kirk, Dale, Matt, and Deirdre. RT