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2014 BYBF Done

Brian's picture

By Brian - Posted on 08 September 2014

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.
Re: This ride meeting: 
Back Yamma Bigfoot 2014
SXC Racing
Position (Overall): 
Position (Category): 

Yee-haa. My first mtb race in just over five months is done and dusted.

After exiting the Cape Epic prematurely in late March I was forced to have a few weeks off the bike. From then I’ve been restricted to the road bike which saw me slowly building my riding back to some sort of decent level. I joined Manly Warringah Cycling Club and got the bug for some road racing. Wow, I know some shun the idea of racing on skinny wheels but this is seriously awesome fun. I think my favourite would be Saturday afternoon at Heffron, when your way above threshold, elbow to elbow and at full gas trying to hold on, seriously the hardest 50 minutes ever.

Fast forward to August I decided to give the mtb a go. I only did Duck+Centre but finishing that ride I’m like right, when’s the next marathon. I check the calendar and the Back Yamma Big Foot looked good. I had nothing planned that weekend, I’ve never been out there so perfect. You've got to love a road trip.

My plan was to get down there early Saturday to allow for a decent recce. This didn’t happen but I did mange to squeeze in an hour before dark which was good. By the time I left it was pitch black, driving out it looked totally different and I didn’t realise the couple camping down the road were actually marking where you needed to turn. I kept going straight and it wasn’t until I got to some bunting I’m thinking, this isn’t right. I turn around and think maybe it’s up here but then that road started to end. With no phone reception I can say it’s getting a little bit worrying. 20 minutes later I get back to the camp site and the couple are like, yeah, we’re marking the turn. Anyway, that was my fun for the night.

Day of the race comes, I’m feeling pretty good. I had no expectations so I was quite relaxed. The whole atmosphere there is nice and relaxed, there’s no need to get to the start line early as its a small field. I started a few rows back, the gun goes and it’s a pretty solid start down the fire trail. The worst thing was how much dust there was and with the sun in our eyes you couldn’t see anything. We hit the single track an I’m about 15 riders back. 3 riders ahead allowed a gap to form and the front group were off. I’m not stressed as I’m just using this race to get my mojo back. I do ask to be let by and then pushed on.

The race goes on and I’m riding solo for what seemed quite a while but then finally see two riders ahead. I remembered back to the Fling, which what would become my downfall, where I felt to need to close gaps fast so this time I just slightly upped the pace and eventually caught them. It was Steve from BMORC riding SS. He had broken a spoke so wasn’t able to push hard although I thought the pace was pretty good. I don’t know who the other rider was as I’m totally hopeless at recognising people. It wasn’t long after then when we pick up Ian. I think he had been on his own little adventure which happened to us a couple of times.

We pushed on and although something didn’t feel right earlier I can now tell something is definitely not right. My legs are burning badly but I didn’t feel they should be. I knew the mtb is harder but this felt really bad when I looked down and realised my seat post had been slowly slipping down. I know I have short legs but this is ridiculous. I’ve never had this before but now know what it’s like to ride with the wrong saddle height.

Ian had pulled away and we got to a section where I just happened to look behind and saw some bunting further back. Ian was gone and I was thinking, do I follow or go back, I turned around and met up with Steve and as it happened, they actually wanted us to do a hard left from the main track to pick up another track. Steve and I continued on for a bit and still a little confused by an arrow, which I think wasn’t secured properly, we were on the right track.

I got back to transition and lifted my saddle, took on water and headed off for the second loop. It felt great having the saddle back at the right height although it didn’t last long. I stopped twice more to adjust it but in the end was sick of it slipping so just left it. I caught Steve again as he passed me in transition. Except for passed the back end 50ker', the second loop was mainly ridden solo but at least I knew where to go so there wasn’t any time wasted there. By the time I crossed the line my legs were smashed and my saddle was 40mm lower then what I normally run at. A total leg burner session.

I didn’t have a goal regarding finishing time but being two loops of the same course I wanted my second loop to be the same as the first which considering the circumstances, it wasn’t too bad. My first loop was 02:07:37 and the second was 02:16:11 crossing the line 12th overall and 7th in category.

Actually, my main goal was to keep the rubber side down which was a total success Smiling

Lach's picture

... hope you're not still coughing up dust like me!!!

Brian's picture

I had to use an eye wash solution this morning as they weren't happy. It's such a fine dust down there.

doc's picture

Welcome back Brian !

And well done, sounds like a good weekend

Tristania's picture

Glad you're finally back on the MTB. Hope the results continue to improve as the Kowalski comes upon us!

jp's picture

Nice work Brian!

hawkeye's picture

Bummer about the seat post, but well done on getting back on the dirt.

Ian_A's picture

I'm spewing I missed that turn around the 40km mark.
I was waiting for you to come through and I was planning on seeing how long I could hold your wheel for.
I'm pretty happy with my 2nd solo lap - just under 2:13 with around a minute in transition and made up 6 places. It was a lonely old time with no one to ride with the whole lap. I thought JayRay might come with me when I caught him but he was running on empty at around 90km.

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