No snow this year for my final race of this season. It was a pretty nice day. Sunny and a still rising 30 degrees. The coarse was in great shape and only 'greasy' in a couple spots. My goal(s) for the race were to place in the top 10 and/or top third. I crossed the line in 9th, but not sure how many started. I think 25. If this is true, I just barely met by goal.
I started dead last again and this cost me some time on the first lap. Lap 2 I was through the masses and free to ride my own pace. I caught and passed guys at the right times and going into lap 3 I decided to sit on a caught rider and let him pull me through the head wind. Still sitting on heading into the woods I could tell the guy in front was fading. I decided that I would attack on the grass climb and keep attacking through the pit area. I felt if I could get the gap he would get caught in the head wind. It worked. By the time I hit the 'Fly Over' I had about 20 seconds. Start of lap 4 I keep charging as hard as I can. I realize though that I can't see a guy in front of me. I finally get a glimpse of him at the out and back by the lower arena. I try to catch him over the next 1.5 laps, but I wasn't making any ground. The bell starts ringing on lap 6. I am still riding alone. 30 seconds behind and 30 seconds ahead. I keep fighting and hoping the guy in front will make a mistake. He doesn't and the race is over. 175 avg. hr / max 185. Ouch.
Overall I'm content with my first cyclocross season. I learned a lot and know what needs to be done for next season. I will be much better prepared and a contender.
Congratulations to all the Champions and podium finishers. Also an extra nod to Jeff for not quiting and to John Osgood for his beer pits during the SS race. The crowd seemed bigger and louder than most races this season so thanks also to the fans.
Time for a review of the first committed race season and come up with a plan for next season.