Tuesday, July 28, 2009

24 Hours of 9 Mile

Let me start by saying it's always good to race with friends and family close by. Once again our pit was the best. For the first time our niece Taylor, who turned 13 on race day, stayed out for the entire race. She had a blast and we were proud to have her working the pits with us. My sister Shannon was able to make it to this race after running into trouble getting to the first two races of the season. She was the gasoline on the fire. Getting us in and out of the pits before we knew what happened. Bonnie kept it all running smooth. Every time I hit the pit I knew she'd have everything and everybody ready, and she did. Finn kept the race short for everybody by keeping them busy when they weren't getting ready for us to come in. There were other surprise members in the pits as well this year. A racer I look up to and admire didn't have a good day. Early on he had to pull out. Despite that he and his mechanic stayed the entire race and helped out team WBR-Siren. Scott and Scott were a huge help and need to take some credit for our successful race.

O.k. on to the race recap...Early on the plan was to race together if we felt of the same ability. By the time we hit the second section of single track Brad was off like a shot, or so it seemed to me. He was feeling strong at the start so I kind of changed up my plan to mimic what Scott Cole had done the year before, start out slow and steady and continue to turn out consistent laps. Maybe I would avoid some of those dark times in a race. Early in the race Brad and Chris were able to ride together which I think worked out well. About 13 or 14 hours into the race I caught up to Brad and Chris and we were able to ride together until sunrise. It was the WBR-Siren Solo Pain Train chugging down the trail. At sunrise Chris wasn't feeling right and told Brad and I to head out without him. We did and by the next lap Chris was back with us and feeling much better. I was glad to see that he was able to bounce back from whatever was getting him. After cranking out 17 laps, we all finished at about the same time.

We each had been racing on Siren Songs and they held up great. I had an issue with a crank that has been showing up with great regularity so I think it's just time to replace it. But other than that no other problems. The Song is the prefect bike for this course. It smooths out the rocks and roots. It lets you really accelerate out of the windy single track. And the big 29" wheel up front saves you when you're late in the race and you're not picking the best of lines through the techy stuff. We were each riding Kenda Small Block 8s. These tires raced fast when the course was dry and even when we got rained on for about an hour or so.

As always a special thanks goes out to Bonnie and Finn for living the lifestyle of an endurance racer with me. These races take a lot of time and sacrifice, not just on race weekend but all year long. Because of their understanding and support I'm able to put in the time and effort needed to keep us competitive. Siren Bicycles earns huge props for such a great product. It looks like three of the top five places in the National points series are riding a Siren. If you're into endurance riding and racing you need to check out these bikes. As I mentioned earlier in this post thanks to Shannon and Taylor for everything you did all weekend long. Weekends like this are what summer memories are made of. And thanks to Scott who's true love of cycling really showed through when he had to pull out of the race but yet still made sure he and his mechanic Scott did everything they could to help us have the best race we could. I know I say it all the time but good solos have great crews and the three of us that raced for WBR-Siren this past weekend had the best crew.

Here's a shot of Taylor showing off another tradition, inspirational posters made by her and her brother and sisters.

Brad as he makes his way into start/finish to secure his fourth place spot. Nice work Brad!
The WBR Siren Solo Pain Train after a good hard race...Let's hope we look this good after Moab.
Ride on!


enduroloco said...

Awesome work buddy good to see you again.

PaddyH said...

nice ride fella, good to have ridden with ya a bit

Anonymous said...

When you gonna come back to the mountain?!
We need to ride. :-)

Oh yeah, ps- good job at the races!

Chester Gillmore said...

"...earns huge props"

... Hmmm 'Earns huge props'?

Enough said on that, now on to the real gravy...

Todd you Rock man... Way to go!

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