Everything that I have either bruised or bloodied. My legs, my arms, my fingers, and especially my ego. This race kicked my ass.
My friend Claude and I left for Gettysburg on Saturday night around 7pm. We slept decently for the night before a race. The Michaux Maxi mus is a 50 mile race through some of the most evil terrain you could ever imagine. The only trails that I have ridden that are more technical were in Whistler B.C. The difference was that Maximus had a lot more mud. Maximus is a good name for the race because it made you feel like you were a Greek warrior suffering through the pain of being stabbed by one million spears.
The forecast was for rain, but it was beautiful and sunny. The weather really didn't matter too much because the course was going to hurt you no matter what. I thought I was ready, but I was not. First of all I forgot my endurolites (electrolite pills from hammer nutrition). I also wore a base layer and I was really really hot the entire race.
The course started out really fast on double track and quickly ducked into some really rocky, wet, and twisty single track. After about ten miles of this along with a really long climb we rode on a fire road which allowed me to take a sip of water and eat a little food. I was riding with a girl named Cheryl who is a Trek pro and is incredibly strong. She pulled me round the rock strewn forest for about 2hours until we came to a very very long climb which was covered in a mixture of grass and gravel. We rode up the climb together but at the top there was an aid station and Cheryl left before me. I knew I wouldn't catch her again, but I didn't care as I learned that I had forgotten my endurolites and later learned that I had forgotten one of my water bottles at the aid station.
After the stop, there was a really long fire road down hill. This is where I flatted. From here my race took a really bad turn. The flat took me a while to fix because my head was really hot and throbbing. Then I realized that the whole time that I was riding with Cheryl, she had been drinking from her camelbak and I did not take a single sip because I couldn't reach my bottle without crashing! This was a problem. I was a mile 25 and I knew that I was in trouble. I rode slow for a long time and ate some stuff. The main problem was that I only had one bottle of water and it was half gone. Eventually after a lot of souled searching, being passed by a lot of people, and being really really thirsty I reached mile 33 and was told that we only had 11 more miles to go. That would make the course only 44 miles right? Yes, it had been shortened to my delight. I rode with another guy for a while and he gave me a swig of his camelbak and then I reached the last aid station. From there it was only 3 more miles, but 2 of them were up hill. By now I was feeling much much better and I finished strong. 5 hours 35 min. Not a bad time, but not what I had wanted. The winner rode 3:59. He is Chris Eatough and he is one of the fastest riders on earth.
Anyway, I finished the race and was humbled but happy that I didn't die.
Claude rode 6:00, a very strong finish seeing as this was his first race of the season and he hasn't raced anything over 3 hours in a year. Specialized Dan and his wife Julie came out for the event too. Julie did the 10 mile race and had a great ride, but Dan smashed his face on a rock, broke his nose, and went directly to the hospital. Poor Dan. We wish him well.
Thanks for reading. I will be doing the Mohican 100 May 31st and driving straight back from Ohio after the race to help Geoff run the Lewis Morris race. For now, I need some rest. bing bing bing.