WIXC race at Silver Cliff!

You may recall that I tried to tell the story of Glaciers one other time. I think in reality, I have discovered a devious Canadian plot. You see, the glaciers did their thing a few years ago. They picked up some rocks, and slowly over time brought them south. I mean it took a while. It isn’t like they loaded up the car and brought the rocks south. The glaciers took their damn time at it.

So, now we all go to Pearson and say, “oh, how cute. Look at what the glaciers did!” But, in the mean time the Canadians have been loading up their trains and sending all the Canadian rocks to Silver Cliff. I figured it out. I was sitting at a train crossing watching a Canadian Pacific train go by. Then it dawned on me, that the Canadians are sending their rocks to the Harescrambles location of the race that I did today. All the Canadian rocks are there. I mean they are THERE. Stuck in the ground, covered in slime and just waiting to flat your tires, ding your rims and break your ribs.

Silver Cliff WIXC race story!

The WIXC race is generally a 2 race weekend. But, because of the State soccer tournament, I could not make the Saturday race. I knew I would be at a disadvantage, because everyone else was there the day before and would know the course. But, I loaded up early and headed out.

Since I got there very early, I was able to head out and look at the course.  I thought I should do that, as everyone else was getting up and making breakfast and just moving around.  Remember, they had the opportunity to see the course the day before, so did not need to see it today.

It had rained the night before, so I soon learned that what we were going to see in the race was slippery mud and even slipperier rocks.  Ugh…  It was going to be a day of slow and steady was going to win the day.

This is pretty much what all of the course looked like.  Mud, rocks and roots!

This is pretty much what all of the course looked like. Mud, rocks and roots!

In addition to rocks and roots, there was also mud and wet trees and branches.  Yum.

In addition to rocks and roots, there was also mud and wet trees and branches. Yum.

The start went straight up a big sandy and rocky hill, one line wide, only about 50 yards from the start line.  There was an alternate line around the hill, that I contemplated instead of dealing with the hill.  I watched someone select that alternate line in a wave ahead of mine, but he inspite of a good start and charging up that line, he was still only 2nd into the woods.

My wave went off, and I kicked, but no forward motion.  Damn, I did not get it lit.  It started on the 2nd try, but I was now last going into the woods.  I had some weird numbing of my hands and a bit of arm pump right away.  I struggled to get past a couple of people in the first lap.  I did finally settle down and start to work on riding smooth, though the course was so rough and rocky that it was hard to settle down.

By the 3rd or so lap, I did catch Jim who was leading as he was getting up from a fall.  I passed him right away, but he passed me right back.  I was completely comfortable with the pace, so I decided to sit on him for a while to see how he was riding.  We were just 45 or so minutes into the race so I had plenty of time to see it unfold.  I sat on Jim for 2 or so laps and he was just bouncing off of things right and left.  Finally he struggled out of the line on a big hill, and I motored past.  Once past, I put my head down and went hard.

I had one bobble along the way, and aparantley Jim got sight of me as I was off my bike trying to get up a big hill.  But, I never saw him after I went past him.  I rode pretty well.  Slow and steady was the order of the day.  The rocks reward smooth standing riding style.  I managed to have a few minutes on Jim at the finish and won my class.  I was also 8th overall on the day.

My RM 250 worked perfectly for that.  My Factory Connection soft tuned suspension was magic.

Early Start!

The new WIXC races start at 11am. That is fantastic, as you can race and still be home for dinner. But, when you are trying to get to the race in the morning, it is a bit daunting. Google maps said it was a 5 hour drive to the race. So, I jumped in the truck at 5am, intending to get to the race by 9am.  Candi, who knows me and my driving habits better, knew it was only really going to take 4 hours to get there.  Unfortunately, she chose to keep that from me until we were already inroute to the race.  Sometimes, I think she has a mind of her own.  I’m just sayin!

It was kind of cool to be out driving already at 4am.  No one is out, and when you go through a town it is completely quiet except the birds.  Neat.  It is also kind of gross though.  The amount of HUGE bugs that were splattering on the windshield was pretty bad.  Large splats of bug.  Yuck.

On the way home, it rained big on me.  Unfortunately, it was not enough rain to clean off the mud on the bike.  I did see a really cool Volkswagen bus on the road.  Dang they are cool.

Cool old VW with bikes on the back.  Always like seeing those.

Cool old VW with bikes on the back. Always like seeing those.

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