A look back at last year's racing at PIR:
This was my second or third week of racing in the series, when Tad ran the course through a sick little off-camber climb up to a tabletop (which, sadly, is not there anymore; I checked when I rode recon a few weeks back). This is the start lap for Cat 2 Masters and Singlespeed classes. The women are the last bunch to get to the tabletop and nearly all of us run up. Because I am not in this race to beat anyone but myself, I decide to hang back and wait for the bunch to clear the tabletop so I have enough room to build up speed to ride the thing. If you make it to nearly the end of the video you will see that I failed on my first attempt.
I would fail the second time too, because there was no room to hang back without getting lapped by the Singlespeed men (who were about to eat me alive and spit me out the back). I finally cleaned it on my third and final lap, only to collide hard with another rider at the top. I still have a tiny scar from where his handlebar went into my ribs; my pedal gouged his shin but he was fine about it -- that's racing -- and after helping each other get up we both went on.
I do not feel terribly "ready" for this season, even though I've done some weight work and a few intervals here and there. I'm lighter, and maybe I'm stronger; but I don't feel faster. if the weight work helps me to finish stronger in some imperceptible way then I guess it'll be worth it. But frankly I've had to deal with so many other things in my lfie this spring that there's hasn't been as much time or energy for "training" per se as I would've liked. Still, I've joined a local team and hopefully I'll notice a difference having more local support at the races. I'm hoping to get out a couple of times this week and next to do some off-road practice, even if it's only an hour on some unimproved side streets in my neighborhood.