Where to start with this one. I thought I had done everything right, I even took my last 1/2 day of vacation Thursday night so when I got up at 3:30am for the 6am flight to Denver it wouldn't be a 3hr sleep night. Well, it pretty much was anyway since I don't fall asleep before 11pm anyway from being use to not going to bed until 12am but at the time I felt pretty good. 24hrs later when I finally rolled into Bend I was thinking a little different.
It started when we couldn't land in Denver for weather at 8am so we circled until we ran low on fuel. Then we flew to CO Springs to refuel but sat there for 3 hrs waiting and then finally back to Denver and landed at 12:30pm - 7.5hrs on the plane already and I was supposed to be in Portland at 10am!!! So, Brian and I suffered at DIA for 7 more hours waiting for a flight with room and finally at 7pm we departed. Landed at PDX at 9pm and started the 3hr drive over Mt. Hood. Luckily there was not bad weather there but it was still slow going since driving mtn roads at midnight while blown out isn't really fast going. Finally rolled into Bend, OR at 1:30am or 3:30am central time - 24hr day - YES!! Perfect prep for the big race.
We were still running about 12hrs behind on just about everything Saturday but we managed to get our bikes together and over to the course for a lap or two. We had a decent warmup riding towards Mt. Washington on some pretty awesome roads but the race didn't go that well for me. I was still flat and not opened up enough and not going very well, I got pushed around a lot the first lap and just felt pretty dazed out there. Finally, I ripped my tire off the rear rim right after the up-over and lost some time and spots and then just rolled it in about 18th. I used my new G3 Powertap wheel so I did collect some good data, always interesting to see cyclocross race data as there isn't that much out there.
following Johnson and Powers up the steps.
Sunday's race went way better. I was feeling good and recovered plus really opened up from day 1. I warmed up really well and then had a great first lap coming through maybe 5th at lap 1. I held about the same for about 3 laps until the race starting splitting. Ben Berden sat up about lap 4 and after watchign the race on Cyclingdirt looks like he is the one that gapped the rest of us off the lead group. That is why you don't sit back in the group but the course was very tight and turny with not many places to move around. So, I ended up racing for 5-9 and ended up 8th. Not my best result but decent considering the previouse days events. It is rather frustrating to actually plan out and take extra steps to ensure you do everything you can to prepare correctly and then have one thing go wrong and make a 7hr plane ride into a 24hr death march. I was disappointed that having the bad race Saturday took me to 11th overall and out of the top 10 for USGP but I guess that doesn't really mean too much anyway.
With 4 weeks to go till nationals now it will be interesting to see who can hold their form and what guys will do to stay in shape. I think I can do pretty well riding inside like I do all spring and I know I can gain some fitness yet doing it, it will just be interesting not racing for a few weeks before a major race. We havevn't had cold or snow really yet so one of these days it's just going to snap around here and the later it gets the better the chances of that happening in January.