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Monday, December 10, 2007

Race report # 8/9 Damn! The return of the HLN8R

This weekend I had a double on the calendar. The district championships on Saturday and the final Pilarcitos series race on Sunday. Both courses I knew well. Districts were held at the same course responsible for this post. Although the turn-out was comparatively small and the more important race was arguably the following day, no one told the fast guys. The course, already a flat and fast one, was designed to allow for more bigringyness than I care for...it was smokin fast. I tried to hang w/ the freight train for the 1st lap, but cold legs just couldn't hold the pace and I eased off. Got passed by a couple of others but couldn't respond just yet. Finally, about 20 minutes in, my legs came around just as Legolas and Fire Marshall Bill caught me. They are two of the fastest 45+ A's and had started 30 seconds back. Fortuna finally smiled. I was able to hang w/ them for almost two laps before they started attacking one another. Bastards. The good news was, I had reeled in two or three and had another in my sights. Now all I could do was pray they motored past so he couldn't jump the wheel. They did and he couldn't. I smelled blood, but had less than a lap to reel him in. The problem was that on this course there's no hiding. It's wide open and it's easy to mark someone of you've got the legs. I gassed it on the longs stairs and got w/in about 5 seconds. He saw me and surged. I hit it again at the triple and the long straight almost making contact. He dug deep and jumped. I finally caught him on the last set of barriers 100 yrds from the finish. Clean re-mount. Click-Click. I had it. Three cheers and a Tiger for me. I just buried myself and almost puked for something-teenth place! whoohoo.
Now Sunday was the real treat. I didn't race. The HLN8R did. Her 1st race in 5 years. Not only had she not raced, but her total time on the bike this year is hovering around 50 hours. Yep, you read that right. Let's not discount the two kids in that hiatus either. She also decided to debut at one of the harder, more technical coursed around. I don't know if I mentioned it before, but this woman has more athletic talent in her sock than there is in the sum total of my historical DNA. My jealousy of that fact I endure with a glacial calm. For her, going from C to B, back to A is a season. For me, that's a lifetime. Anyway. I truly loved watching her race again. She said she had a good start, hitting it from the back row to pass a bunch on the climb at the start. Then she endo'd big time. I didn't see it, but she said it rang her bell. She mentioned that she just wasn't use to the power of the canti's and heading into the first downhill section, she grabbed a handfull of brake and sailed. It wasn't until we were in the car that it hit me. We both run moto on the cross bikes. She spends nearly all of her bike time on the road. I'm switching it over this weekend. I felt guilty. She thought it was funny. HLN8R, you are my hero.


fhfr436 said...

Of course HLN8R's problem can simply be solved by running the left-rear on all bikes. I've done it since 1990 or so and have never looked back. Congratulations to her.

tjh said...

Exactly. By 'it' I meant switching her road bike. In our house, the cross bikes are the default.

fhfr436 said...

As it was in the beginning and ever more shall be.

lauren said...

well crud!

i wish we'd been there! i wanted to see the debut.

congrats to her, getting back out there. that's awesome.

is she going to race again this season?