Monday, October 1, 2007
Race report from Xterra Nationals
Well, sunday has come and gone and Jess and I are finally back at sea-level...it feels good to be home!
On Saturday before the race we woke up to snow on the ground and very cold temps...not exactly what we were all hoping for the day before such a big race. Saturday afternoon the sun came out, melted a lot of the snow and left us with feelings of hope for race day. On Saturday, after a ligh day of pre-race training and some relaxation we all went to the Hyatt for the year-end awards dinner. We had a good time , especially since we were surrounded by friends and family. At the dinner I was awarded a regional champions jersey making me a two-time Xterra regional champ. After the dinner we all went home and hit the sack early.
-Getting the new regional champ jersey
Sunday morning we all woke up early to eat some breakfast and then we went down to the race site around 7:15. It was freezing! Once the sun came up it was much nicer but the super cold temps made jumping into the 58 degree waters difficult. After about a 10 minute warmup I came to the shore to claim my starting spot. At 9 am the cannon fired and Nationals officially started. I knew that I couldn't go out really hard in the swim b/c the altitude can sap your energy and your motivation if you redline it to soon so I quickly set into a hard but controlled tempo. Nothing stellar but I did put together a decent swim and felt comfortable doing it. Once out of the water the real race began and I took off on one of the most epic trails in the world. I didn't have much time to take in the sites but I did manage to take 9 minutes off of my time from last year. So, I have made great progress on the bike but I have a long way to go before I am posting times that put me in the mix with the top pros.
-Heading out onto the bike course
After the bike I still felt strong and I was eager to head out on the run. I gave it everything I had and put together a respectable run split. My run time was the 13th fastest on the day and allowed me to finish 18th overall, 3rd overall amateur.
Going into this race my goal was to win the overall amateur title. I said that this would be a tough goal to achieve but I think it was a reasonable goal and I wouldn't change it. While I didn't achieve my goal it is undeniable that I have made a lot of progress over the past year and I still have 4 weeks until worlds. I have always been more concerned with overall placing rather than age group placing so I am happy with my 18th place overall...especially since 31 male pros were on the start list. This is a big race with all of the best Xterra athlete's in the country so I can't complain about my result...I am happy with my progress.
My performance at nationals proves that I am on track for a good result at world's. A few more weeks of some hard riding and I will be primed to tackle the most important race of the year. Again, the goal is to finish 1st overall amateur and, while it is a challenging goal, I feel that it is attainable.
-The day was hard...what can I say?
I will be resting for a few days from the very hard effort yesterday and then I will move into my final prep phase for world's...it will be very hard training and it will get me up to the level I need to be at for the big day.
Thanks to all my friend's and family for the support and good times!
Stay tuned as I ramp up for World's.