Single(Speed) and Loving it

By June 1, 2013Blog

Stage 6 — Home Court

I’ve felt fresher than I did this morning — and with temperatures set to climb into the 90’s my 14 minute lead in the GC wasn’t feeling as comfortable as I’d like.  But the knowledge that today’s stage covered some of my favorite trails was enough to get me to the start line in good spirits.
After Dax’s early attack yesterday I was wary of his antics off the start today and I tried to keep the pace high into the first climb.  When we turned up Thickhead Mt I settled into a pace that suited me and to my surprise I gapped Dax and started reeling in some of the geared riders ahead of us.  I figured I could either walk away from him altogether or at the very least make him go into the red to catch me.  In the rocks about three quarters of the way down the John Wert trail he regained contact and we set off with a mixed group including Theo Procops, Wes Richards, Jon Firth and Drew Simson.  That bunch managed to stay together into Lonberger Trail where I again played the role of tour guide.  By this point the heat was soaring and we were pouring as much water on us as down our throats.  I was really feeling the heat by the time we climbed back up to the Tussey Ridge Trail — the jewel in the Rothrock State forest and the trail that everyone comes here to ride. Dax and I headed up together, but I had to back off the pace as my temperature climbed and the world started going a little fuzzy.  I hoped that years of riding that trail in a variety of states — after long days at work, the morning after a particularly raucous going away party, etc. —  would at least let me limit my losses and i managed to come out the other side much refreshed and only a few minutes down.  Once down off the mountain it was a road race, and I figured I might be able to regain some of my losses if I could keep the cadence high.  In the end I finished 1:50 down, which still leaves me a 12+ minute cushion going into the last day.
Tomorrow looks like it will be a day of real racing — unlike the parades of years past.  So we’ll have to save all the shenanigans for Stage 8!

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