I'm starting to think that next year I'll just race SS and limit the number of things that could actually ruin my race. Maybe I'll start a pool before each race to have people bet on what will start me on that long, lonely run to the pits. Maybe I'll just grab a cowbell and a coldie and start my professional heckling career. Anyway, I wasn't going to miss this one due to the fact that the course is crazy and the beer is free....YES, free!!
SCX#5 - Enumclaw:
There is a campground with full hookups literally right on this course. By using that term I do mean that the course does run right through the campground. Denise and I decided to grab the dog and head down the night before to stay at the park overnight. There were others camped out as well and even though it was pouring rain that night it was over 60 degrees so we sat out under the awning and hung out with our carbo loading pasta and Elkhead brewing growler.
The troops were just getting done setting up the course when we got there and it looked to be slightly different than last year's course but only slightly. Last year we pretty much went directly to the big ass run up right after the start. I made for a crazy, bunched up mess. This year we were getting a chance to get things a little sorted out before we the climb up. The two beer gardens were setup at the top of the climb and at the barrier sections and the hecklers were out in force.
This was going to be another Enumclaw mudfest!! Here we go.
The start went well and as we reached the mountain for the first time I was up towards the front. I slogged my way up to the cheers and jeers of the brew crew and made my way back down the hill. This year the crazy downhill section didn't seem quite as insane. I was able to make through without even pulling my foot out of the pedal on the hairpin corner at the bottom. We pushed our way through a mud section that led to a short climb on hard packed dirt. That is when I noticed something wasn't quite right. As I started climbing my chain started to skip and about half way up. I lost momentum and had to dismount and run the rest of the way up. I got passed by a handful of guys but I didn't panic. I settled back in and got back up to speed.
This seemed to be going fine until I reached the same section on the next lap. Once again my chain started to skip and I had to dismount and run....WTF!! I lost the time I'd made back up on the last lap and started to curse at my bike. Once again I was able to get back up to speed and regain some ground.
I started the third lap and was still not doing bad. I turned the corner after the start and got out of the saddle to put in big effort on the short, straight section. Just when I mashed down on the pedals my chain dropped. I have a chain catcher and it has aways worked. I was just coming over with my right foot and the force just broke my chain in two. It was jammed between my catcher and the frame. I can't believe I didn't get the worst sack racking of my life but somehow I was spared. Once again I was miles from the pits. I grabbed my bike and ran maybe ten meters before just walking off the course. Another F'ing DNF. I'm getting really sick of this but the free beer afterwards really helped.