That is pretty much it. When you pull in to Loretta’s Ranch, there is a sign outside that says – Welcome Y’all. Ok. Thanks Loretta. I have been here before. Not in some other life kinda way, but here to race before. 3 times, to be exact. And even I know that this makes my 4th time. You see, math is hard. I know that to be true. But, 3+1 does equal 4. Since I have been here 3 previous times, this makes my 4th time. You know, the next time. Oh, whatever… I am tired of explaining myself. Get with it.
I also know exactly where Loretta Lynn Ranch is and exactly what the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow is, by the way. Ask me. Deep Thought says the answer to life the universe and everything is 42. Don’t think you are getting out of this easy.
So once again, Scott and I are taking on another GNCC. Are we crazy? Are we unbalanced? Are we left handed? I think so would be my answer to most questions (unless you can answer with a decimal point). This time, no creek crossings. I figure that since we did more than our share of creek crossings 2 weeks ago, I am laying down the law this week. There will not be any. Period. “This Cannot Happen.”
I had a really good race here last year. I think that I was FIRST PLACE! In case you are wondering, that is really as good as I can do. But seriously, I did have a good race here last year. I have not had as many great races this year as I would have liked. Sure, I have won some races, but other than Perry Mountain earlier this year (We won, in case you do not remember), I have only had a couple of other good races. I am looking for one here.
Back at the back row again. I guess I could move up to a different class, but the back row is actually my speed. I finish in the top 5, and I am much older than anyone else in the class – so there. Here is where I will stay.
NEWS FLASH – we did not cross a creek at a GNCC race. WTH? Is Barry Hawk on pain killers or something? I do not think in the history of GNCC racing has that ever been done. The standard for GNCC is that if there is not mud, then make some. I think that my bike will be clean in less than 30 mins of washing. Air filter is probably pretty bad, but there is not 50lbs of clay/mud that needs to be removed. Wow.
So very interesting start to the race this year. There is always a grass track section at a GNCC off the start to spread everyone out before the race goes into the woods. But, we never get to do that section after the start. This time we did the grass track section each lap. Super fun.
Then we jumped onto the MX track, where I got to show off my sweet monster man made whoop skills and my sweet jumping skills. I felt a little like Napoleon Dynamite going off the jumps with everyone watching each lap. I am ok at ripping a berm, but not jumping.
Then off into the woods for 10 miles of hills and rocks. Huge uphills and downhills and rocks. If you asked me what the race was like, that is my summary. Just add fast and really really rough and I think you get the picture.
Typing this the day after and my body is still tired sore and beat up.Joe Vadeboncoeur @joev3 Sore. Beat up. Tired. Stiff. Low back roached. Caloric deficit. Post race bliss. #llgncc
One of the beauties of traveling to race is that I can show off my burrito finding skills. I am proud to say that between Scott and I we both found an excellent burrito in Tennessee and Kentucky. Yep, wrapped in a tortilla is some goodness.
One of the unexpected highlights of the race was coming around somewhere in that first lap and seeing a motorcycle on its side and completely engulfed in flames. Not sure what happened, but holy cow it was ablaze. There where a few people just standing there looking at it with dazed looks on their faces. “What to do with that?”
Look at the helmet cam video at the bottom – 9mins 40 secs in you will see the bike on fire.
I am pretty stoked that I got in 6 laps. This is absolutely a first for me. I have been routinely able to get in 5 laps lately, but I have never gotten 6 laps. When we did the whole GNCC series in 2008, I only got in 5 laps one time all season. Surprising part is that at 6 laps, I was still only in 5th place. That is my fault though, as I completely crumbled at the end of the race. I was charging hard all the way through the 5th lap, and at the end of the 4th lap was in 4th place gaining on the 3rd place guy (I had the gap to 3rd down to 35secs at one check). But the 6th lap, I completely cratered. I got crampy and could barely hold on to the bike. Turns out my fork was completely gone. I would go all the way to the metal on any medium sized bump – and there were lots of those by now. I just could not push any more. I fell apart so badly that the 5th place guy caught me and I could not even stay with him.
Oh well, it was a great race.
That is a wrap on a truly great season of motorcycle racing.