Hixton D16 Harescrambles

I bugged out of the house this morning at 6am.  By myself today, no Scott.  I didn’t even have Candi with me, so the drive was really an alone drive.

The morning was perfect.  The sun was out, it was nice and cool and not a cloud in the sky.  It rained just a few days ago, so I was anticipating epic conditions, and I was right.

The turnout was not huge at this D16 race, but there were enough people to call it a race.  There were 11 people on the +40 line.

The Hixton course was really good.  It was probably 80% singletrack and the other 20% was ATV trail width connecting the singletrack.  The laps were about 12 minutes long for me.  Brian Terry had added about a mile and a half of virgin singletrack.  The new singletrack was tough.  Alot of it was on a sidehill, and I knew when I previewed the course that the sidehill stuff was going to be tough, specially for the C class doing 2 hours.

The + 40 group was on the 4th row at the start.  There were only 2 AA riders, Mat Herrington and John Strangefeld.  I started way to the outside of the line so that I could radius the first turn without really shutting off. When the gun went off for my row, my RM250 started right up and I rocketed towards the first left turn.  The guy to my left, got an even better start than I though.  He led me into the woods, but was really in way over his head leading the group.

I had previewed the course on my mountain bike, and knew that I did not really want to lead the first lap.  But, the guy in front of me was struggling and I could not watch it.  I took the inside around him on a turn and slipped by.  I put my head down and went hard, even though I did not know the course.  Unfortunately, that meant that I made about 3 wrong turns in the first lap.  I still managed to hold onto the lead though through that lap.  Once I knew the loop, I was able to focus and put my head down and make time.

I had a methodical day.  I jumped from one rider to the next and made up a lot of time.  I had maybe the best day I have had on a bike in a long time.  I never lost focus and never had a lap where I lost the plot.  It all came to me really well.  I felt great.

In the end, I was 1st in my class and 3rd overall.  There were only 2 AA riders, and they both beat me.  But, I beat all the A riders all the B riders and all the C riders.

Rob Houts was not there, as he was racing at the WIXC race in Crystal Falls.  It would have been better to have this day in a race where he was there as well as John Buechner and Jim Blau.  But, I am feeling pretty good and ready to face those guys at the next race.

Woohoo!!!!

Joe

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