Eventually I’ll sit down and write out details about the race, about the climbs, the pain, the descents, the lack of Reimer’s ranch style technical, the other racers, and the pain….wait, did I already say that.  Ever feel like your spleen was trying to strangle your lungs?  Yeah, that’s pretty much what this felt like the whole time.  It was a tough course and truly did benefit those who are from the area and are climbers but I stuck to it and finished.  The downhills were not as fun as I had hoped and the uphills were lame on technical but insane on elevation change.  The best was the end switchbacks where I could see my team members who had just finished and those who were cheering us on at the bottom.  I was happy to be done and finished with the words, “I miss Texas trails!!”

I will say how awesome it was to see so many NRC/Kona riders out there.  I am thankful for my team and all the fun we have.  I was able to meet team members I’ve never met before and was blessed by having the encouragement and positivity of Dan E’s wife at the end of my race.  She ended up coming by Nick and me during the race.  Nick was in pain and was completely cramped up.  I gave him a Gu and she helped him out.  Later, towards the end, she yelled words of encouragement that really made me appreciate the experience no matter how much I wanted it to end.  Thank you so much for that!

It was also a pleasure to meet my friend Sara’s father.  He was beaming with pride of his awesome daughter and seemed to really enjoy the team.  I’m so glad he was out there at the races.

Here’s a great pic that was taken at the beginning of the course.  The girl and I stuck together for the first little bit but I did’nt want to hang right next to her and contemplated the result of blowing up way before the top but I decided to stand and got in front of her.  I had to make it my race and ride like I think I should.  I didnt see her the rest of the time though I kept it in the back of my mind that she was on my heels the entire course.  Patty B said I did a good job of blowing by her and getting up the hill.  It was killer but sometimes the game is so much more mental when there isnt a whole lot of difference in the physically.  The blow of me passing her and looking (only looking) strong may have been enough to make her settle for not getting first.

nationals

Here’s a look at the course:

My hip flexors hurt just looking at this- the muscle memory is painful!

My hip flexors hurt just looking at this- the muscle memory is painful!

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