Monday, February 04, 2008

Icycle 2008

Reflections of the Icycle, what a crazy weekend as expected. Kristin and I drove up to Fontanna Village Friday night stopping in Bryson city for “the special” at a local pub. A cut of prime rib that was bigger than my head and we took off for the last few minutes in the car.

Lots of good talk and beer for Friday night, thanks for the taste of the home brew!! I have learned the first and foremost important part of brewing your own beer. Keep your *&^% clean. Use clean water and make sure all of your stuff is clean. I will brew my own batch before 2008 ends. . . look out Travelers Rest.

I awoke to sunshine Saturday morning and we got the masses together for a group warm-up. Cook, Cissy, Andrew, BrouSSard, SingleTrack Pig and I all went out for a look at the course. I had forgotten how steep the trails are out there but was quickly reminded as we walked up the first steep hill. The rest of the course was manageable on the single speed.

The downhill on the course was killer fast just like I remembered it to be. Lots of passing potential all over the course creates for some exciting racing when you are only doing two 6.5 mile laps.

My only goal for this year was to find my bike at the start as I ran around like a chicken in 2007. After watching the expert class take off, single speeds were up. I ran toward where I thought my bike was, jumped over the first bike I saw and as I was in the air I looked down to my right and realized I was jumping over my own bike. I landed, turned around and got on the bike, a reasonable start. I told myself to push it and get up front but it is so hard after the start leaves you anaerobic, then you have to try and “run” up the first singletrack climb.

I had no idea who was around me but I knew I was in the back half of the class. We started climbing and I realized I better make some passes if I wanted to race respectfully at all. I was behind a big line of riders and passing was going to require extra energy to be spent by passing in the leaves going uphill. I made the call and passed quite a few people going up. At one point, I was working some passes with a guy in front of me when he cut to the left to make another pass, I pulled up hard to the right and made a double pass. I got a “yeah yeah Jonathon!!” from BrouSSard and was surprised to hear that he was behind me. I knew it wouldn’t be that way for long and soon enough he called to pass me on the right. I told him to go catch Andrew who was racing expert.

I got in behind an expert rider for the downhill section and was glad to see he was a good downhiller as we ripped it pretty fast and almost blew the first switchback, thanks to the disc brakes we kept it safe.

After the initial passes on the first lap, not much exciting happened. Kristin called out that Jody wasn’t too far in front but I was already paced out where I wanted to be. The second lap felt much better and I pushed it but didn’t really pass or get passed by many.

I had no desire to look at the results but it sounded as though our group ended up about the same as last year.

My big mistake came trying to race the downhill again this year. Maybe I have finally learned my lesson by not dying but let’s just say I owe an apology to Adam who was behind me on the downhill and I am glad there wasn’t a BUI checkpoint at the bottom of the run.

Great times!! A shout out to Wes for organizing a fantastic event! Thanks to Brad for helping out with arrangements and always being in good spirits.



Palmetto Solo said...

Great write up leroy. Love the pics on mtbr.

cornfed said...

I think I'm going to have to sit the second snake out next year and hit up the Icicle. Word from the boys is that it's the bees knees!

Cass Perkins said...

Whimper whimper whimper! I am soo jelous! I haven't missed an Icycle in years. Now, I am an icicle and my bike hasn't seen any action for 3 weeks. Nick and I are working on our muffin tops. Great job and keep up the bloggin