Thursday March 31, 2011
Man, we’re already solidly into bike season. I guess last year I kind of forgot how busy springtime could be while I was sitting on the couch (between rehab sessions of course). Regardless of my skewed perception, this year started off busier that most. With the Rabobank Camp in Cyprus and associated travel, it’s a good thing I got in some proper riding in January because I’ve kind of been too wrecked since getting home to do all that much. Which is pretty frustrating. As my departure for two weeks of racing and training in California rapidly approached it became clear that the Cold I’d probably caught on the way home from Cyprus wasn’t going to be ignored and was in full effect for my solo 13 hour drive to Los Angeles for the US Pro XCT kickoff in Bonelli Park two weeks ago. That was a pretty dark day, and not just because of the snowstorm I drove through. It takes a lot to stay positive when you’re starting a pretty key preparation block in the absolute basement…
Ah well, I took a bunch of Standard Process Echinacea and Zinc, slept a fair bit and hoped for the best. The warm Cali sunshine helped work the bug through and I was sorta feeling reasonable by race morning. It was also disappointing to be feeling so sub-par at a race that normally would have been good for me. The track was pretty legit, Ty Kady from Sho-Air had clearly spent some time creating interesting “pro sections” and the course flowed together really well. Flow doesn’t mean easy though, it was hard! I eased into it and actually felt sort of reasonable for the first few of seven laps. Eventually I forgot about my situation and took it up a notch to pass JHK for 6th place. Which resulted in a prompt reminder not to dig too deep that came in the form of being forced to ride the last few laps in survival mode on account of a very empty fuel tank… I held onto 9th in front of a hard-charging Steven Ettinger of the newly formed BMC U-23 team. Those boys are getting quick. Jeremiah Bishop did his homework this winter and came home with the XC win.
As part of both the US Pro XCT series AND the Sho-Air Triple Crown All Mountain series, Bonelli played host to three events. A Super D and Short Track complemented the XC and each rider was given their best of those two events to add to the XC for the weekend overall. The “Super D” (a term I hold great regard for but use loosely in this context) was two hours after the XC finished and to be quite honest, I didn’t have the capacity to dig deep on what amounted to a 30 second fireroad descent followed by 6 minutes of time trialing on the last 1/3 of the XC race course. Ouch. Sid Taberlay beat me by 40 seconds, in addition to everyone else.
A nice Sunday morning ride with the Kona Boys, Barry Wicks, Kris Sneddon and Spencer Paxson through Marshall Canyon seemed to start Short Track day off right, but it soon turned wrong as well. A good start and the lead group was mine for a few laps, but that empty feeling came back quick and I was relegated to the second chase group, which seemed to be comprised of people who love crashing for no reason. It was scary. So I led them to a finish in the teens somewhere for safety’s sake… Wow. Bishop won again and Barry took our good morning mojo to the podium in 5th.
OK, I survived that weekend and salvaged a few UCI points but knew some proper rest was in order before any training in the sunshine commenced. Laguna Beach seemed just the place for that so I moseyed over there to sleep on a friend’s really comfortable couch and lick my wounds…
Click the link to read Adam’s full blog post: http://adamcraig.net/blog.html