Another great MASS event this weekend. I wasn't able to make it to this one last year, but I can't remember why. I couldn't turn down an event in Michaux though, it's been almost a whole year since I've even ridden there. Jen and I left on Saturday afternoon to meet Brandon and Jocelyn and rough it in start finish area. The camping was alright, it got a lot colder than we were prepared for but the air mattress didn't quite lose all of it air during the night, which was nice. Once the sun came up though, the temps started jumping up fast. By the time that the 10am start came, it felt like it was already in 80's.
I think every race should start with a neutral roll-out. A nice one mile cruise out of the parking area before the everyone starts going nuts. When we hit the first singletrack section, Brandon and I were in the front and cruised out of sight in the first couple minutes. Each of us had a slight mechanical issue that involved yanking some sticks out of derailleurs and wheels and by the time we reached the next long road section and singletrack descent, a handful of guys caught back on and formed a cute little lead group as we rolled into the first significant climb up Canada Hollow which instantly separated most of us again. I rolled over the top in second, chasing Jordan who had killed it from the very bottom, with Chris Beck and a twin within sight behind me. Chased Jordan for the next hour, barely catching a glimpse of him a couple of times on the final road climb, guessing I was about 45 seconds back. Closed it down to about 10 seconds coming down the last fireroad into the last 2 minute climb, without him knowing I was so close and was able to sneak right up to his rear wheel as we turned into the final powerline climb. I could tell that I, at the very least, had the element of surprise on my side, but neither of us were sure where the finish line was. Jordan threw down a cramp inducing attack on one the punchy spots up the last climb but I was able to get around when we crested the top thinking that the finish would be at the bottom of the descent and out on the fireroad. Turns out I won the sprint by a few feet over him and neither of us really knew it. I still can't believe how Jordan killed it all day like that! Its good to see him finally getting some fitness nailed down.
Oh and Matt had a pretty stellar ride too, busting out a podium finish too!
Nationals is in two weeks, in Colorado. Thats about it for the traveling this year, which is nice. I like doing local races and hanging out with the local crowd. It feels like home.
Also got my new helmet today. Louis Garneau Diamond. Feels like a pillow on my nogin. Realized I've had my old helmet for longer than I've even know Jen. 6 years. It's about time.