You know it's getting to 'cross season when goodie boxes start showing up.Fresh bar tape, a few new Campy freehubs and a pile of sweet Grifo XS tubulars. With any luck, I'll be able to start rebuilding the Record hubs and Mavic Reflex hoops next week, but that will require removing 2 years of glue which is no too terribly appealing. In any event, I look forward to building another set of wheels.
In racing news, I started my sizeable racing block last weekend at the OMBC event at East Fork. I was a little disappointed with the start since we weren't going balls out up the opening climb (where I set my 1 min max power last yea), but then again we weren't going balls out. I took 5th into the woods after the ~2 mile road section and was riding comfortably. Unfortunately, I got slowed by a few bobbles in front of me and didn't want to/couldn't bridge the 20 second gap. With a coupla PROs like Anthony Slowinsky and Brad Wilhelm ahead of me, I didn't figure it wise to try to bridge only to hemorrhage time later.
As expected, I started feeling better as the race progressed. This was bolstered when I passed the guy in 3rd who had flatted and asked if I had a pump. I did not, so I could not oblige. Let me say that I would have dropped a CO2 cartridge had he asked for one, but I'm not going to potentially strand myself by giving up my CO2 gun so a competitor can continue. If he did not prepare well enough then this is not my concern. Carrying on, I was solidly in third going into the final lap and was just about to throw in the 'chase' towel when I saw P2 about 30 seconds in front of me. I'm assuming he had shut down until he saw me because that's what the gap stayed and I definitely gave it the ole' college try to close said gap, so any efforts by me were matched by him.
At the end of the day, I ended up 3rd behind Slowinsky and Wilhelm, and I was only 2:30m behind Anthony and 30sec behind Brad. Sure, Slowinsky flatted and ran the last half mile in but I wasn't 6 minutes behind, either.
So the next race is the AMBC event @ North Vernon's awesome Muscatatuck Park, and starts Saturday with a Short Track race followed on Sunday with the XC race. Fingers crossed, I have a good weekend.