Monday, May 18, 2009

Georgia Single Speed Championship

Last Friday, the weather report for the weekend forecasted lots of rain. Both my brakes where barely functioning and needed to be bled. My bottom bracket, clicking. Aftermath from racing in the mud at Yargo a few weeks back. Racing in the mud is not a lot of fun.

Fortunately was able to get my bike all fixed up (thanks Shawn!) and decided, at the last minute, to head up Saturday night and camp. There was already a bunch of folks up there and a few free kegs of Terrapin beer. I figured at the worst, I'd have a good time hanging out and could bail on the race if it was raining before the start.

Scott Hodge lit his chain on fire. That is a cool party trick.

Fortunately, the rain held off for the race.

Race was four laps of about 5.70 miles (according to my GPS). About a mile of the course was open field without a whole lot of elevation change. The rest, tight, twisting single track. Lots of steep little climbs and drops. The ground was well saturated from all the rain we've gotten the last few weeks. Oh and the roots. Lots and lots of wet, slippery, treacherous, roots. Saw a number of people crash and saw even more on the side of the trail, fixing pinch flats.

Race started with a mass start and a short parade lap.

Lap 1 - 40 minutes 47 seconds - I wasn't very aggressive off the break and found myself near the back as we entered the single track. Took a few minutes for my heart rate to come down and my legs to finish warming up. Then, I started passing people when I could. After a while, ended up behind Matt Smith. He was putting down a good pace so I settled onto his wheel and followed his line.

Lap 2 - 42 minutes 11 seconds - Dropped Matt off at the start of the lap, he had a mechanical issue. Opened the pace up for a while until I caught up with Ursula. She was riding well so I hung onto her wheel for a bit. Embarrassingly enough, she pulled away from me at just about all the real technical spots but I caught back up on the climbs or when the trail opened up.

Lap 3 - 42 minutes 58 seconds - Lap three was exactly the same as lap 2. I just followed Ursula's lead and tried to ride smart.

Lap 4 - 43 minutes 37 seconds - Ursula slowed down a bit so I dropped her off at the start of the lap. I took it easy on the technical spots, was getting fatigued and didn't want to go down to a root or tear open a sidewall. At this point I was running up most of the short and steep climbs, that was faster and easier for me. Also tried to pick up speed in the open areas.

Ended up getting lucky with the attendance in my age category and snagging second place. Got some cool t-shirts, pint glass, carbon handlebars and a few other things. Guess the threat of rain, which hit hard about 10 minutes after I finished, scared a lot of people off.

Total time, 02:49:35
Distance, 22.52 mi
Average speed, 8.0 mph
Average HR, 161
Elevation gain, 2,924 ft

GPS: (minus the parade lap, I didn't think to start the GPS until the first lap)

Go here for more photos and stuff.


  1. Nice Job!

    BTW, where did they have the race, I don't recognize it at all.

  2. Oh yeah, Hawke's Creek Farm, just east of Athens.

    Here is a video that Mark D took: