My first REAL mountain bike race. Ayshia and Scott were there to see me off. All of the beginner women's age groups started together at the base of the mountain, around 1:30pm. I was so nervous on the drive up to Winter Park, but when I got to the start line, I was frustrated because I was in the back of the pack, but I felt strangely calm. We took off down the road where it turned to kind of a double track trail before turning to single track. It went down gradually for a ways until it turned and started to climb. I felt pretty good, but let myself slow down when I came up to someone. I passed a lady, who passed me, and I didn't want to pass her again, so I rode right behind her for a while. Not smart in a race, but give me a break-it's my first one! It's a learning experience, right?
I passed Marni whose chain had fallen off. I felt so bad, I wanted to stop, but knew I would be useless. I checked to make sure she was ok and had to pedal on.
We came up to a steep, rooty turn. The lady in front of me stopped and hiked. So I did. Then when I got over it, I was trying to clip back in and something went wrong. I ended up on the ground, scraping a tree on the way down. I was passed then, but I didn't care. I was having fun!
It started raining on the climb up and it was such a relief-the loud thunder made me keep pushing harder. The climb up was tough, but the ride down was all worth it. My category was pretty spread out during the climb (and I did pass the lady on the service road) so it made going down a lot of fun.
Seeing Ayshia and Scott at the bottom was so awesome! She usually can't go with us because we are both racing, but Scott wanted a day of rest since he wasn't feeling well and was nice enough to hang out with her while I rode. What a guy!
Hopefully, this is just my first of many mountain bike races to come. I learned a lot from just this one and I am very excited about the next one. And since Ayshia has learned to ride her bike, I'm very excited to get her out on the trails!