Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Devil is in the Details

Headed up to the 22nd Annual Tidewater Mountain Bike Challenge on Sunday for the once a year opportunity to ride on some sweet singletrack that's been carved out in the woods of someone's private property. The 4 mile loop provides a garden variety of what you find on any given trail but the unique "gravity cavity" sections are my favorite because they're not only fast & fun, they're set up to let your momentum do most of the work for you! The course is perfect for spectators, even providing some spots where you can see a few different sections of the trail from one vantage point. With Ingram, El Cap & new cat Karen there to cheer our friends and me on, I had great support to go along with the prime conditions (both weather & trail).

The expert women class was set for 5 laps. I've been mountain biking for many years now but never got into the racing aspect of it. That said, I think my green horns (costumes were encouraged) were aptly worn that day at the start. I got caught up in the back & fumbled a bit riding so close to each other, had some reoccuring shifting issues and then topped it all off with an unsecured rear wheel skewer (that I noticed about half way into the 1st lap after dismounting to reset my chain that had come off). Good stuff. Finally got the kinks worked out and caught back up to the pack. Don't know for sure where we were when I manuevered my way up to the front but I do know I was glad to get there. The familiar feeling of being out on a trail with no one too close by helped to temporarily distract me from the uncertainty of the not knowing just how close "too close" was. I settled in on a pace that I was able to maintain and tried to keep count by remembering how many times I got to hit the jumps (another favorite
section). Managed to hold on to the lead for the remainder of the race & can honestly say I had a blast along the way!

This race was not only about the ridiculously fun course the promoter et al set up out there but it was equally about the easy going air circulating through those woods. Mountain bikers are all about having a good time and it shows, especially at this race. Already looking forward to signing up next year but I'm hoping it'll be the Duo-Enduro class with Cheetah...thinking we should enter as the "Flying Feral Felines" but there's plenty of time for deciding on that.

Thanks to everyone whose efforts pulled off yet another successful year in this long standing event & thanks to the other girls who raced...the quality over quantity concept was once again in full effect, making for another enjoyable experience from start to finish!

Ali Cat

P.S. Mysterio Muggler is da Man!


Liz Schleeper said...

Great job out there. I posted a note on my blog also and linked to you here. What a fun race and you smoked it!

Vanderkitten Virginia Beach said...

Great job, Ali Cat! We're all so proud of you : )

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