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

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Fat-Tire Loppet

Last Sunday was the Fat-Tire Loppet held in Minneapolis. It's part of the City of Lakes Loppet, primarily nordic skiing. In addition to all the ski events are two bicycle races, an ice race on Saturday and a Fat-Bike race on Sunday,both sponsored by my team's shop Penn Cycle. Although I would have loved to do the ice race, I had other plans with my family on Saturday. I had to settle for only one race this weekend, waaaaaa.
Fat-Bikes everywhere
 The race wasn't until 2pm after all the nordic events were over so we wouldn't potentially ruin the trails for skate skiers. Unlike last year we were actually allowed on the ski trails instead of just the lakes, which made for a much more exciting and challenging race. The first third of the race was very hilly and had me at red-line, even though the course was hard packed and very fast. I started strong but soon faded as the hills were punishing me, I went from the front to somewhere around 20-25th place. Just as things started to flatten out I stopped and aired down just a little, as the tires were just breaking through the crust enough to make the going slow on the flats and twitchy on the descents.
Check-in,  yes boring pic but I didn't have a lot to choose from...I was racing not doing a photo shoot
  About this time I got my second wind and began picking off riders as we neared the finish. I was glad to be out of the hills but the miles out on the open lakes into a strong headwind were a challenge all their own. I had broken away from two separate groups before hitting the last lake and was paying for it. They were all able to draft each other and if the race had been a mile or two longer they definitely would have caught me. I was relived when I took the last turn off the lake to the finish chute. It was different than last year and came up much sooner than what I was budgeting my legs for.
Start Line
 When I made the last steep little bump a woman at the top was shouting my place and cheering. The finish was one of the coolest ones I've ridden through, it had a short but really steep downhill that allowed for some effortless high speed and a sharp turn at the bottom. It felt good to come in "hot" through a large crowd and coast to the actual finish line instead of dragging ass, ready to puke, and slogging along at a snails pace like I was just before the last little climb. I was quite pleased to have  finished 8th overall and I'm not ashamed to admit 7th was a woman. She was damn tough and I was not able to hang with her in the hilly sections at the start. Congrats to my team mates who finished 2nd, 13th and 14th.    
Team mates, Best in Schow and Moto Guse.....   The fat guy on the left is me
        Until next time....... D Rider, out

5 comments:

  1. Great read!! Was fun trading off on those hills early on and I have to agree...that finish chute was incredibly fun!!

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    1. yeah, it was fun even though the hills were killing me, congrats on the win

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  2. Great seeing you out there! Hope our cheers from the bridge helped you finish strong!

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    1. Yes they did, by the time I got to the bridges I was pretty cooked, thanks for the morale boost

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    ReplyDelete