After racing in a slightly subdued manner at last week’s Crunk, my instructions for this week were to warm up well, “take the governor off” and see what happens. I decided that in order to get a good warmup, I’d ride from home and utilize the new Greenline that Memphians are going nuts for right now (that’s a whole ‘nother discussion…)
The ride in was good. It took right at an hour, and my legs felt nice when I arrived at Tobey Park. I signed in and decided to get in a couple of laps before the race. Then, something bad happened. Remember the torn hip adductor from last year’s Fools Gold megawreck? It came back at the first barrier. I tried to jog it off, but all to no avail. It was hurting full force. I briefly entertained the thought of not racing, but then noticed some competition showing up. My pride overtook my common sense, and I lined up next to Russ Griffin, who unfortunately seemed to be suffering from a similar ailment.
With the signal to go, I sprinted for my bike and went out full-force. If you want to have a good first lap at Crunk, you have to, lest you get stuck behind the 13 year old with the walmart mountain bike (nothing against those kids… I just don’t want to be behind them). I just hammered as hard as I could and ignored the pain.
Initially, that strategy worked. I was ahead of a group of guys that had beaten me last week, and I was putting time on them. Two laps in, I stacked it into a set of high-speed barriers. I was in traffic, and I was going at a high enough rate of speed that I hit the ground, slid, and jumped up fast enough that I never actually quit moving (I know, because I couldn’t find the speed drop around that time on my Garmin). That hurt. I gritted my teeth and kept the hammer down.
Thanks to Michael Carpenter for the photos…
Hurtin’ (Matt dubbed this the “Baby-eating Face”)
Then, with 3 laps to go, Implosion.
In the space of half a lap, I went from hammer to nail. My legs raised the white flag, threw in a towel, then used their last bit of energy to kick the bucket. Russ lapped me (luckily, that ment 2 laps to go), which was expected. Then I started getting passed like I was sitting still. The group I’d been holding off flew by me like I was on concrete tires, as did about 11ty billion other people. People that I had lapped flew by me. It was bad.
Luckily, Jeanie and Karen didn’t catch me. Good thing I had put in a good starting effort- they don’t mess around…
Looking back, I probably bonked a little. I’d eaten a PB&J after work around 5:00, and nothing since. That, combined with an effort I haven’t been training for AT ALL lately added up to certain leg-death. I’m really happy with the effort up until then. Also, watching some video clips that Chris Irving put together, I realized that my form over the barriers is pretty damn good. Everyone always talks about how smooth Russ is over barriers, and I like to think that my form seems similar (albeit proportionally slower) with the addition of a little more “hop” since I don’t have legs quite as long as his
As far as the injured adductor goes, it f*cking sucks. I had to skip my usual Wednesday workout, and today won’t be much better- it was going to be some CX drills and lifting, but it’s shaping up to be a light ride this morning in hopes that I can keep healing with no re-injury.
Oh yeah, and speaking of things that Fool’s Gold has eff’d up, I tried to fix my Formula R1’s last night… they’re still $600 paperweights. I’ll post my awesome bleeding/cleaning rig later once I see what Formula has to offer as far as customer service.