I awoke this morning in the back of Bruno feeling the effects of yesterdays antics. Stiff shoulders, stiff legs, stiff back. Whether this is from yesterdays stage, or sleeping in the back of my car is debatable. Luckily I knew what the actual time was this morning. Bruno has developed a constant gas smell, which is little disconcerting considering it is my house this week. It can only make me stronger.
The Meal Plan
I opted to buy the meal plan offered with Singletrack 6. For around $300 they provide you with breakfast and dinner at the ungodly hour of 5:30-6:30 am and pm. Anyone who has raced an event with multiple days knows getting quality food consistently and quickly is a nightmare while trying to juggle 5 different things while also racing a bike! The meal plan is a no brainer in my opinion.
The food has been great, and there is a lot of it! I eat better at this race than I do at home, that’s for sure. But then again, my cats eat better than I do.
Aint no Pain like Champain – Stage 2 of the SingleTrack 6
Today’s Fernie stage started at the local ski resort. Since my cut-in-line technique worked so well yesterday I opted to do the same today and managed to be in the top 1/3rd again. I find if I am friendly and look like I know what I am doing people don’t ask questions.
The race exploded off the line leading into a 500m-gained double track climb. The pace wasn’t as spry as yesterday I felt, as I think there were some sore legs and egos from yesterday’s stage. I bled through my eyes trying to get my 30lb beer gut up the climbs today.
Today’s stage was much different from yesterdays. The course profile looked like shark’s teeth, and although most of the climbing was on a gravel road, there were 4-5 major ones followed by various types of descents.
Today’s stage featured the famous ‘Project 9’ decent which is legendary in these parts. There is even a beer named after it from Fernie Brewing Co!
Project 9 is a fantastic long decent with knarly fast sections that you would expect from a BC trail. The only words that come to mind are ‘flow’ and ‘chunky’.
Really the day was made up of going up, and then down many times. Compared to yesterday’s stage it was a little frustrating for this guy. It provided 1500m elevation gain, but other than project 9 I felt like we lost a lot of hard fought elevation without a ton of quality singletrack time. Lets be serious for a minute though, anything compared to yesterdays stage would be like going from a champagne room stripper, to Pornhub.
Around the 2 hour mark, I blew up! There was no gas in the tank and I was left climbing the final climb covered in my own spit and snot just trying to make it through the day. My idea of taking 1 bottle and hoping it would last for 2 hours failed me miserably. You live and you learn. You would think after 18 years of this shit I would have learned by now.
That being said, there are fantastic aid stations with everything from Coke, to Ultima electrolyte drink to watermelon and gels, but I’m too stubborn to stop. Of course it makes more sense to spend 5 minutes on the trail in the middle of no-where bonked out of your mind trying to find out where your hands are, then to take 30 seconds to fill a bottle and grab a free gel 20 minutes earlier…..hindsight is 20/20.
As of now, while sitting in a bar with a ‘Project 9’ beer in hand, I feel pretty good. I hope this is a good sign of things to come tomorrow. It’s a good game plan to anticipate adapting into form 3rd day into an epic mountain bike race and pull out some strong legs right?