Its Friday nite and I just got back to the hotel from a pizza diner with about 15 other riders from my town. When I did the first Fatbike Birkie in 2013 it was me and another guy. Now a lot of guys are up here. Some for the first time.
It too bad with the huge rain\meltdown last Mon\Tues made the ski trails all ice. So they made up an alternate route that is a 6 mile loop. You can see where they brought in some big equipment to scrape the ice off the trail. This year its been tough sledding up here with the ski race canceled. Now this. One week ago the trails were just fine for the race. After the meltdown they had about 2 days to make this new course up. Hats off to the Birkie crew.
The 6 mile loop is tough. So much climbing. My lap times will be over an hour. Between my weight, my fitness and all that climbing my goal will be just to finish. At least that will keep my streak of finishing every Birke alive. Early to bed tonite. As crazy as it is to talk about a meltdown\rain, its now below zero tonite with a high predicted at race time of about 2. Its nuts how this winter has went from one extreme to the other. So its bundle up in the morning.
Race day, Im off at 915am. I tried to not get there to early be but I did anyway. Just sat in the car as it was about 2 degrees. Thursday afternoon we were riding in mud. Today it was 2 below when I got up. About a 40 degree swing. After almost no warm up we were off and as I thought I was in tour mode. I rode with a few other guys in tour mode for almost the full first lap. After a while we kinda went our own ways. Im not good at turn by turn reports but I will say this was the hardest Birkie ever. Many others confirmed that also. Many hills I had to walk. But so did hundreds of others. Overall I did not lite the the course on fire but I did finish strong passing quite a few riders late in the race. Once the hills were over I just put it in time trial mode.
Im just happy finishing the race with my weight and fitness. I could of finished in a bit faster time having waiting for a few friends on the first lap. But it was all good. I had a good time and thats all I care about.
Its Saturday nite. 8pm and Im in for the nite. Im so sore Im not sure I can ride in the moring but I will try. Anyway, the race went better than I thought and Im glad I did it. I was pretty worried after yesterday’s pre ride. I estimated about a hour a lap and it turned out to be about 55 minutes. The second lap was faster.
So if I didnt goof off the first lap I would have finished about 142nd instead of 158th out of 192. I must admit its kinda hard not to go hard in a race. Many times when I waited up for others I wanted to just go. But thats not the race I was going to do that day.
So here I am back at the store with everything in perspective. Im acually still a little sore but not bad. I could ride today. You want to talk about irony?
Its snowing here like crazy. Couple inches an hour. 4 to 8 inches predicted and we have four already. This crazy winter continues as we have a snowless Fat Bike Birkie and we come home to a blizzard.
I get back to the store and this is going on. Nuts!
So the fifth Fat Bike Birkie is in the books and I have attended and finish all five. In fact the last race I did before this one was the last one last year. If Im down to one race a year Im glad its this one. And while it was a strange race, and a strange winter up there I hope to continue. I can say I was at the Birkie that had no snow. Which sounds not so bad with a bike but it was the meltdown making everything all ice.
I was hoping to get a little ride in Sunday but I was just too sore. So I got up, had breakfast with the guys and headed home.
And even tho it was not a normal fat bike birkie weekend I had a great time bike riding with friends for four days. Usually within a week they open up the registration for next years race and I will hand out my money right there and then and call in for m,y room.
On to Fat Bike Birkie 2018!