It seems like just yesterday that I was sitting here typing my first race report of the season, and now my last race of the year has already passed. The Chain Stretcher Race at Blue Mt is one of my favorites, and this year I was glad to have it at the end of my race calendar. I was pretty excited the night before in anticipation of the race. I was completely surprised in the morning when I woke to the sound of rain, as rain was not predicted.
Although the rain washed away my excitement, I wanted closure on the season, and closure on the Lyme disease, so this race was significant to me. I took the start line, with all the usual ladies I have had the pleasure to race with though out the season. The course was unusually slippery, and the technical nature of the terrain made it very treacherous. My rear tire was slipping out on rock faces, and wet roots took me down on the last sweeping turn out of Stinger. I can’t say anything broke or hurt after the fall, but it mentally slowed me down. I was having one of those "not too confident days", and I eventually gave into a methodical, safer pace. I even got off and walked a few things.
After one lap, I checked my lap time and had a moment of doubt where I questioned whether I would finish before dark. I had a little pep talk with myself, and I managed to stay with it, and although the mud smeared rock gardens seemed to get worse each lap, my riding seemed to get better. My second lap was much faster than my first and I tired very little for the long race it was. Three hours and 45 minutes later, I came across the finish line in my big chain ring with a big grin on my face.
So, although I am a little disappointed that my technical riding was not my best at my last race of the season, I felt like I beat the Lyme at this race. This was by far the longest ride I have done in months. My energy levels were good and I felt stronger than I have felt in quite some time. Looking forward to enjoying some casual autumn ridies and returning to normal riding habits.