Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Rowdy Dawg

This weekend Team Vassago (or a big chunk of Team Vassago) ascended on Blacksburg Virginia to participate in the Rowdy Dawg. This is a grassroots race that's been held the last few years in the hills around Virginia Tech. We decided to participate in what they call the Double Cross Country category.

After getting some confusing pre-race instructions on how many laps we were doing Brian Archer, Jeremy Arnold, my buddy Shannon from work and myself lined up with 5 other really strong riders in the cold October air.

Around 9:35 or so we get the signal to go. I jump out front to see if I could push the pace a little bit, hoping that I wouldn't burn myself out in the first 5 miles. The course consisted of some really steep hills, fairly technical rock gardens, screaming downhills and twisty singletrack. We get spread out a bit on the first hill and I'm really not feeling being in the lead like this so I back my pace down and get passed. That's ok, now I can just ride my race and settle in. I'm doing fairly well, the hills are working me pretty good with my 32x19 gearing but I like it on the flat stuff and gentle rollers. About half way through the 2nd lap I get passed again in a rock garden. No problem, I'm still feeling strong. Plus I tell myself, those guys are on full suspension bikes with gears vs. my fully rigid singlespeed ;)

The day drags on and I'm starting to feel the hills. I also start freak out because I can't remember how many laps we are supposed to do. Was it 3 or 4? Shit. I ask at each rest point but no one knows. I feel like I can't stay long at these water stops and I tell myself it must be 3 and decide to make the turn back to the finish line. I'm freaking out the whole way up the climb to the turn. Then I see the ROTC volunteers. In a very commanding voice he says "You're XXC, you're done only 5 miles left". Sweet, I get a burst of energy to finish strong.

Anyway, it was a hard race and I managed to hang on to finish 3rd in about 4 hours and 45 minutes. This race really surprised me. I thought it wouldn't be that hard compared to the 100 milers or even the MIchaux Series.

As always thanks to Vassago Cycles and The Bicycle Escape.

Pictures coming soon.

3 comments:

Hmmm.... said...

Excellent job Kevin!!!! Congrats. Rest up ---- only a few more to the season! :)

The Goat in a Turtle Shell said...

Congratulations Kevin. Awesome job toughing it out on the single speed on a tough course. Great meeting you, we should deffinitley plan on the Dragon's Back next year.

Kevin said...

Thaks guys. It was fun.