Fuck yeah, it’s Friday!! So drink up my bicyclesturbating friends! But not too much, ’cause there’s racing to do this weekend… It’s been over a month since my last “race” at the easily forgettable (from my performance/finishing standpoint) Barry-Roubaix. But tomorrow I’m back on the bike in a semi, not at all competitive way, at the 2014 Rust Shaker race in Harrison, Michigan.
I love this race, and its hotter cousin the Sweat Shaker, not because I ever do well there (outside of a 3rd place finish at the Sweat Shaker in 2012 where hardly any showed up in my class) but because the race is on what I consider to my “home trails.” Trails that I ride, ski, snowshoe, hike and fuck about on nearly year-round. As a bonus, a portion of the cash goes to keeping the trails kick ass and to a scholarship fund for Mid-Michigan Community College which hosts 16 miles of singletrack trail, and there’s nothing wrong with that (unless you’re some sort of jerk).
Last year I had a sssssssssuck ass Rust Shaker. A cool Michigan spring (SURPRISE!) gave way to a warm race day temps and my thick blooded, muffin-topped body hadn’t adjusted. I was panting like a dog, sweating gravy out of my fat face, one pedal turn away from a stroke the entire race. Then, during my first lap, I SOMEHOW managed to crash on trails that I must have 10,000 miles of riding on. In the end, I limped home in next to last place. But despite wanting to quit after that first lap crash, I managed to push myself to the end.
All in the past now, 2014 is a new year. I have absolutely NO podium ambitions and am way more comfortable with my place in the mountain bike world. I just want to race with a bunch of my friends and help to raise money for the trails I ride multiple time a week throughout the season.
There are a lot of big races going on this weekend, it sort of suck that I am not even thinking about them, but I am more than OK with that. Bike racing is what you make of it… setting personal goals, having fun and getting outside is what it’s all about. It doesn’t matter if you win, finish mid-pack or come in last. There is even something more special about racing when it’s local and just getting out on your bike can help support the sport and local trails systems.
Stay tuned for yet another truly forgettable race report from me in the coming days. How long can I keep this shit storm up? Seemingly forever…