This being my second MTB Marathon since March 2014 I really had no idea how I would go.
I have been riding a bit so I knew I was going into this with some fitness. I’ve also been paying attention to what I eat and have managed to drop a couple of kilograms which is always nice.
After heading down Friday afternoon with Michael, checking in, picking up a race number we headed out for dinner with Dave and Gary. Besides the restaurant forgetting about our meals everything was going like clockwork.
Morning of the race after the usual interrupted pre-race sleep, I’m up before my alarm sounds so I decided to get an early start getting ready. The temperature is cool but definitely not freezing so I was an easy decision to go for the straight jersey and knicks.
We get to race, get our bikes ready and start warming up. This is where I start to think it’s going to be a long day. While I’m warming up and putting in a couple of efforts my HR isn’t getting up at all compared to the effort.
Get to the start line to find we’re close to the back of the first waive. I’m a little stressed about that but we’re all supposed to have been seeded based on previous results so it is what it is. Gun goes and we’re off.
Back to my warm up where my HR wouldn’t go up well, it’s the same. My legs are hurting like hell and I’m barely in the 170’s. normally at the start I’m high 180’s. I find I’ve now lost a few places so I put in a big effort just before the single track. Once we hit that it’s a bit of a congo line but that’s okay, I’m thankful for the rest even though its only 10 mins into the race.
A small group forms but its not long before the pinchy fire road climbs has me getting dropped. I’m finding I can’t go deep but I can hold a decent output so just keep pushing along.
Its not long and then another group forms including Jenny Fay. This is good because I’ve ridden with Jenny before and like the way she rides. There’s probably four to five of us now taking turns on the fire roads and holding each other in the ST. A few times I’m off the back and just when I think the elastic band is going to break I manage to get back on. I’m hurting big time now and begging for the untimed section to come. It’s close to the untimed section and bang, I hit the deck in the ST. I lost about 20 seconds.
I hit the untimed section, stop for water and a bit of a rest and then move on.
I started the next section with a small group and while we picked up some riders some got dropped so ended up about 5 hitting Stromlo. After the untimed I was sucking down gels every 15-20 minutes just to survive. I really struggled up Stromlo but was happy with my descent.
In the end I crossed the line with a time of 03:54:58, 6th in Masters and 32nd overall. I’m really stoked with my result especially with my lack of racing of late. My next race should be The Convict so now its time to do some rides up there in reverse.