As I prepare for my 1st Big Day race of the season, my thoughts go back to last years attempt which left me bruised and busted, but not broken. It was a long tough day, I ended up getting stitches that evening... and then, I could barely wait to race this event again!
Taming this beast has eluded me the on my1st and second attempts. My 1st attempt in 2011 was plagued by dehydration, cramping, and a general ass whooping by the many steep hike a bike sections. However, I also remember what a devilishly fun course it was. Lots of great rock features and some screaming descents made for a intense and memorable way to kick off mountain racing.
During my second attempt in 2012, the 1st part of the race went better for me, but I still managed to underestimate the amount of fluids I needed to intake and was fighting cramps for the second year in a row. Also, I made a bike handling mistake and wrecked very hard, just barely missing a tree that caught my leg as I plowed into the trail. I ended up with a pretty bloody elbow laceration. I got home a bit late that day because of my visit to the emergency care facility, where I got stitched up.
So as I look forward to tomorrow, I keep in mind lessons from the past. Bring more fluids that you plan on. Bring more enduralites than you think you need. Don't get too cocky on the descents when you are exhausted. Get ready to have a blast!