The following is a true story, only the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Get Phat with Pat

This past Saturday marked the conclusion of a two race series on the Minnesota River bottoms. This was also the second year for the running of this race. It also happens to be an event put on by my awesome sponsor of 17 years, Penn Cycle and the owner Pat Sorensen (the namesake of the event, and a top notch friend).  Both events went well in the bitter cold we have been enduring this year. The numbers weren't as high as we all would have liked, but both events were competing with other races held on the same day. Last Saturday there were two other events in the Twin Cities and this past weekend we competed against one. As usual Penn Cycle had a ton of swag to hand out including a 9-0-7 fat-bike frame! Minnesota Off Road Cyclists (MORC) was on hand giving out hot dogs,brats and hot beverages both weekends....Thanks Morc.
Big D was out with me the first weekend. He had fun building snow forts, eating hot dogs and drinking hot chocolate while I was out racing.

The start line for race # 1
 The first weekend we were fortunate enough to have CJ come out and groom the course the night before. A few guys, and myself, had been trying to keep up with the snow and the packing of the course to no avail. The river bottoms trail is a two way and we needed to maintain a complete one way loop by bush whacking an alternate route. If not for the grooming, the racers would have been doing a bunch of walking. The second race was much easier to set up, I know because I was responsible for putting up ribbon and marking the turns with florescent paint early Saturday morning. It hadn't snowed much all week and the course was really firm and well defined. Having done my duty early in the morning I had planned on riding out with the pack on the first lap of the race and then backing off on the second and pulling all the ribbon for the "clean up". I knew I was wussing out but I had already been there four hours before the start of the race and I kept telling myself "you either put on the race or you race the race....not both". In truth I have done both on many occasions, but that little voice in my head was telling me otherwise.
It was peaceful but cold morning for race #2 when I was out setting up

The only two beginners to show up at race #2. I had just finished up with the course when they came through to start their lap on the bottoms
  Not wanting to let my team down, I took the start line and did my best. I was still planning on a slow second lap, cleaning up. It wasn't until about a quarter of the way into the race and about 12-15th place that I started feeling good. I wanted to go fast now, I felt great. The trail is too narrow to pass except for a couple places so I would either ask to get by or give a couple tire rubs to let them know it's time. By the time I got through the first lap (8 miles) I was sitting in 6th or 7th place and had abandoned the idea of cleaning up. Somehow on the last lap with only a mile and half to go I managed to drag my nearly 200 pound carcass up to third place. I was really happy with this and was determined to hold on to it. Right behind me was Mr Wolf Tooth Mike Pfeiffer, I knew he could beat me and has done so in the past. So as soon as the two of us got around the 3rd and 4th place riders I went as hard and as smooth as I could in the remaining mile of single track. I had a good lead on him when I hit the road for the final approach. I put my head down and pedaled until a felt like I would black out, too scared to look back. I held on to 3rd place and could not have been happier.
The winners circle, B Moore, Pat Sorensen, B Tungseth, and yours truly... D Rider
 At dinner tonight, while I was giving a recap to my boys, my middle son Super Y, commenting on my fatness, asked if the finish was on a downhill ? Then they all laughed and said that's why you went so fast. Thanks kids :-)      

2 comments:

  1. Here's the links to my Flickr sets for both races:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mnbiketrailnavigator/sets/72157639931211774/

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mnbiketrailnavigator/sets/72157640193623203/

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