Its time for some poaching. We're headed back to the metropolis of Marysville for the holiday and I can't wait for a few days off and a few days of some of the best riding anywhere on and off road. I'm planning Perry Tours while I'm home and maybe a bit of the beautiful trails in the Marysville valley in and around the farm and hopefully a ride with the local boys on the Saturday morning group gig. Should be excellent. Of course, Kris probably has plans for me that I don't know about yet and it'll put the kibosh to all the riding I've in mind. At least I'll eat well.
For anyone besides me that thinks this is actually interesting, I didn't get completely destroyed this past weekend in 'cross at the USGP races, but I did get my downgrade!! Yes, congrats to me!! In USACycling's original awarding of cross categories I was given a Cat 1 license. At the time this wasn't even appropriate as I'd already not raced cross for several years and my road and mtb racing was on the decline as well, but whatever I didn't change it cause hey, I'm a cat 1.
When I started doing some cross racing this season I questioned an official along the lines of, "Is this Cat 1 thing going to be a problem?" I was told not to worry about it. Well, on the start line of the B race last Saturday where I'm assigned the 14th start position (this is huge, its a good spot to be in what with 80ish riders in the race) and where I'm already getting some good natured grief for sandbagging from my buds who remember a day when I was actually fast (I remember that day too) I get a little special call up from the staging folks. There seems to be an issue with my Cat 1 notation since this is a Cat 2/3 race.
I plead my case - "I'm old, fat, don't ride much, and haven't raced cross in forever!" It doesn't look good, I may not get to race... "All I want is a workout, I'm happy to start at the back." Still doesn't look good... Finally with some reluctance I get a "Okay, you have to start at the back and we better not see you on the podium." Yea right, like there is any chance of that.
I start at the back...somehow I make it into the top 20 and finish in 17th or so and was that ever fun. I really didn't think I'd move that far forward in the group but it seems that both my fitness and skillz are coming back a bit... Started about 45th on Sunday and hit 10th. Like Colin said the guys at the front are like the big bosses in video games and I'm too blown to pick up the special weapons on my way through the course or remember the secret codes. I new I was on a good day when I caught SlimmerMark who has been rockin' it all season. Now if only that little 14 year old punk would slow his ass down.
It's poachin' time!!
Here are some shots of my actually fast buds playing in the sand box and one off to a wicked fast start...
Hebe, Ferg, Yoz, and Leech, respectively