Tuesday, September 2, 2008

SM100

Is it possible to feel like riding 100miles when it's 6:30AM, there's a honeybun and poptart sitting in your stomach, and you've endured an assault of pouring rain, fireworks, and air horns the night before. The answer is no but I saddled up and hit the first short section of pavement with over 500 other delusional people. Thankfully I was able to trick myself into thinking this was fun until it actually was fun, then miserable, then fun again. The last 25miles there was no question that this was pure pain and going slower just means you'll suffer longer.

To start the race I actually set a good pace, something I felt like I could maintain all day. I never spent too much time at any aid station although I probably carried too much water in my camelbak for most of the race. The weight penalty was worth not worrying about a lack of water anywhere. The volunteers at the aid stations were the best I've seen. As soon as you roll up somebody grabs your bike and asks what you need, then they actually get it for you very quickly.

I hit mile 50 at about 5hours and was very happy about that. I still felt like I could ride another 50miles and hoped that my pace wouldn't drop off too much. It did but there was alot more climbing in the second half than I realized. Climbing that required me to walk more than I ever have on a bike ride. I spent what felt like too much time in a low cadence crawl so whenever I got the chance to spin fast on gradual inclines or flat stuff I tried to get my speed up and improve my efficiency. Rolling terrain was like manna to me. Drafted where I could on the flatter stuff but that's tough to do in most places when you're stuck with one gear.

The mud wasn't nearly as bad as I though it might be from the rain. There was only one section that really became a problem. It was some grassy double track around mile 80 or so. The entire climb, you're either on sticky mud or thick grass with huge amounts of rolling resistance. I questioned the sanity of trying to ride a bike on this kind of terrain so I walked mostly. A rocky downhill followed that had me going pretty slow and stopping to rest my arms a few times. A suspension fork would have been a nice thing to have at the time but I probably would have needed the rest anyway.

The final climb was unbelievably long but my early pace seemed to pay off here. I still had to walk in spots but I was riding strong when I got on the bike and passed a singlespeeder that had been ahead or just behind me since mile 45. The final downhill was a little rough or seemed that way at mile 90 of the race but I forced myself to keep going without a rest since I was so close to the finish. Final time was right around 11.5hours. Not too bad considering I've never ridden over 65miles in one day or been on the bike more than 8hours at one time. Bottom line is that this is a fun place to ride and a fun weekend that includes camping, two big dinners, and plenty of beverages with your race fee. I'll be back next year but I'd like to make sure I spend less time on the bike.

3 comments:

DukePirate said...

Congrats on the finish! Eleven and a half hours sounds like a good time for your first hundred. Painful, but still a good time. Think how much faster you would have been on your new bike, or with gears, or with a suspension fork -- you've got all kinds of good excuses!

1007.rad.haus said...

that is amazing JD. congrats. sounds like a tough but excellent day in the saddle. sorry i bailed on going. just too much going on these days. i still have not even built up my new frame. was waiting on a new "E" type front der. but Ali pointed out last night that i was stupid and don't need the "E" type afterall......so i could have had it built and dirty this weekend.

hope you are recovering well.........got any pics?

felonious said...

Bravo, JD. The endurance mtn bike side of BCC is looking strong, mighty strong.