Thursday, August 03, 2006

24 Hour Nats

Now that I got that first post outta the way and made sure I knew how this thing worked here's a bit more for yinzers.

Me, Yozer, Dieter, RayHawg, BubserBen, and Nance piled into the rented roach coach last Thur and beat feet for Wausau, WI and the the 24 Hours of 9 Mile - this year's 24 Hour National Championship race. A drive straight through landed us somewhere in northern WI about 16 hours later giving us time to find a spot, get in a lap of the course, and generally get settled in for the event. Leech's and Ray's folks made the trip out as well, driving out from PA in their own vehicles to provide the support needed to make a true run at this thing. Awfully sweet of them. Luckily Ry's mom had a camera surgically attached to her hand for the weekend so you may end up seeing some of those shots here or over on his blog.

A dinner consisting of the finest mexican food WI has to offer...

Then it was a little more prep and a movie before hitting the hay. In that strange coincidental way things happen the movie was Dogma in which two angels are banished from heaven to a place worse than hell - that place? Wisconsin.

It wasn't that bad, besides the Mexican food anyway. It was a pretty sweet course, especially for my sorta-in-shape-but-not-all-the-way-there-ass as its climbs weren't steep and the singletrack was fast and fun. 10AM rolled around and Dieter took the holeshot and was first out of the Lemans start and into the loop on his bike coming around about 58 min later in 5thish. RayHawg was next, then me, then Yozer. That was pretty much the deal for the next 20 hours with all of us running laps between about 57 min and 1:05 through the night. The local conglomerate team supported by Trek/Gary Fisher stuck it to us and we could never quite close the gap with those boys taking a well earned victory 10 minutes in front of us. Hopefully we made 'em sweat anyway and represented the state and well.

Our mech, Ben, did a heck of a job and so no problems - not even a flat - held us up during the race. We all ran into problems with lapped riders here and there, but the other teams were dealing with it too. My favorite incidents were 1. getting kicked by the women's solo winner , who I think was a little delerious when I came up on her at one of the few technical sections of the course (she came to an abrubt stop and as she dismounted kicked me in the hand as I came up behind to pass) and 2. having words with some butterfly wing wearing guy who was apparently out for fun rather than racing. Yep, there's some weirdos in them there woods. At 3 in the AM with hours of racing under the belt no one is making great decisions, but hopefully neither of these two felt too slighted by want to move more quickly than they were going.

Second step on the podium and then we gotta outta dodge pretty quickly after the festivities and in a caffeine fueled haze drove straight through to Hburg since we's all working stiffs and had to report bright and early Tue morning for work.

We missed the other bubsers on the trip but once ZackAttack and SSwess get all healed up they'll be back. Taytay and Sunshine kept busy with the 101 with Sunshine rolling to a sweet second place.


Am I recovered, I don't know for sure. An easy spin yesterday and the day before, Monday off, hopefully I'm rested up from the 24 Hour Championships at 24 Hours of 9 Mile now. We done good. Brought home a silver medal in the 4 man competition. The best part was it gave me something solid to aim at and I actually succeeded in pulling a little form together for the thing.