What a season! It has finally come to an end as it does traditionally on the first Saturday of November at Iceman in northern Michigan.
Friday afternoon I was planning on doing a quick 1hr ride, 30 minutes out and back on the trail, but after doing the first half mile I decided that I was going to have too much fun riding the Breezer so
I mine as well ride the whole thing. It was only 30 miles and I don't get to ride off on the trails often. But since getting the Breezer a few weeks ago I haven't been able to stay off them. I also have the same problem before road races as well as I have a tendency to do to much riding the day before races when there is great routes as I just really enjoy riding.
Some two track that Iceman is know for. Gives road racers a glimmer of hope
A little muddy during the preride.
The course which is usually sandy, if not covered beneath inches of snow, was wet this time. There were numerous water puddles covering the whole trail, and leaves on the single track. But by race time after 4000 riders took to the course all the leaves were gone and the puddles had either dried up or a clear path had formed around. Even though I've done the race numerous times it is nice to see where everything is again exactly, especially the few challenging hills towards the end.
My dad who not only is a super nice guy and ace mechanic shown here lubing my bike, but he also is a hell of racer as he completed his 19th Iceman, finishing 14th out of over 100 in his group.
The weather the next afternoon was sunny and warm enough. If you've done previous versions you could not complain about this years weather. After a stroll for a preride I showed up to the start line 10 minutes early to see that I was the last of the 125 riders to line up and would start from the back of a stacked field. The race would include many previous winners of not only Iceman, but of mountain bike national championships, including the reigning champion.
My start of course was bad, but got worse as the race went on. Like in any race you never want to be at the back because nothing good happens there. I couldn't do anything to help myself out of the back. Then after 10 miles I proved that an object in motion stays in motion as my bike hit a stump on a downhill and stopped but I did not. It took a bit of wind out of sails and took to much time to get going again. I found some riders to ride with for a while before going forward on my own for the last 10. The result was nothing to write home about as I've gone faster and done much better, but again it was a great time.
I think I need to stick to the endurance mountain bike events where I can use my loads of road miles to my advantage. Or just train more off road, whatever...