Crandon – finally riding closer to my potential!!!!

This past Saturday was a local D16 HS race up in Crandon Wi. Yes, that would be THE Crandon, where the offroad truck race track is. Wow. What a trip.

If you read the previous post, you know that Scott and I did not do the Sparta GNCC race and that we ventured up to northern Wisconsin, 4 hours each way, and did the D16 race in Crandon Wi. It was the best race we have done so far this year.

We arrived at about 9:30, for a 12:30 start. We usually like to get there with enough time to get our bikes and gear sorted and to take a look at the course. We brought our mountain bikes with us to take a look at the course, since we were short of time. The problem was that it was only about 49 degrees. OMG, it was almost June 1!

The loop looked to be a bit short, but after a look around it looked to be really fun. There were some really fast stuff that felt lke GNCC bits. Cut about as wide as a quad in spots and really fun. Then, there were some super super technical only as wide as your bars between the trees kind of stuff. Then, you broke out onto the truck racing course and were wide open in 5th gear. In between all of that there were some big hills, and a huge mud hole. Damn.

The race blasted off as scheduled at 12:30. That would be the whole field, minus me. Me, I sat there and kicked and kicked as if I had never done this before. 4 kicks later and I managed to get the thing started. By that time the whole group was around the first turn and blasting down the straightaway of the truck track. I guess I like making it difficult on myself – jeez.

So I set about working it. There were 14 people in my group. I saw as I came up to the back of the pack that Rob had already started to check out. We went into the woods, and when we came out he was gone. But, I went into the woods with 10 people between him and me. Yow. I sliced and pushed my way forward as fast as I could, but still exited the woods with at least 4 people between Rob and I. I caught Jim Blau at about the 3rd lap. I figure he was in 2nd. I kept pushing forward, and eventually had Rob in site. Unfortunately, I managed to fall over 3 times that next lap. Jim and at least 1 other person got by me. That started a serious of back and forth between Jim and I. I would pass him, then mess up, I would pass him back and then mess up etc… Finally, with 2 laps to go he tried to blast pass me in the mudd hole and went on to his head. That was the last time I saw him.

Rob ended up with a little over a minute on me on the course. But, he managed to get through just under 2 hours for 1 more lap than me. I finished with 15 laps in 2 hours and 12 seconds.

2nd place. But, a 2nd place that I earned. I chased through the whole group and made it up to the front. I battled for 2nd, and nearly won overall.  I do love doing local races, where there is a story afterward.

Some interesting pieces of info:

1. This is the first race that I have felt that I have gotten near my old riding ability, since my knee surgery. I have been tenuous since then.

2. I burned almost 3 gallons in a 2 hour race. I guess when you are on the gas and going hard, you do use more gas. I have been hardly using 3 gallons in a 3 hour GNCC race. I need to twist it harder there.

3. I have had 3 bad starts in my entire race career. 2 of them have been the past 2 races.

4. This is the 2nd time this year that I have lost my camelbak all over my self. I caught the mouthpiece of my camelbak on my bike or chest protector, pulled the end off and spewed all the fluid all over myself. A mess, but the big deal was I did that on lap 3 and then did 12 more laps with no fluid to drink. (Probably explains how worked I felt the next day).

5. My RM 250 with a 170main jet, JD jet needle on the 4th clip and a 48 pilot jet was PERFECT!

6.  I actually really like mud.

7.  I used to think I was better at technical.  Now I think I am much better at fast.

8.  I fell pretty hard on a fast bend in the woods.  My knee was stiff the next day, but not bothered.  Yeeha!

9.  I still don’t like jumping.

10.  I am so glad I am not on a 4stroke.

I am going to do another local race next weekend and then a local enduro the following weekend.

Out.

Joe

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