Dark Cross was the most hyped event for all this year. The day before Dark Cross, I was scrambling to find a bike to race, when I got some luck and my bike showed up at the shop-just in time to build it and head to the race. I got my new Kona Major Jake from Kona! Thanks Kona! All built up, wheels changed and 18 lbs, it was ready to go and ready to race.
This was my first real attempt at cyclocross. I was coming off of over one month of absolutely nothing- and my noggen was finally ready to race. I didn't have my race fitness that I had in the beginning of August and late July, but racing would be my fastest way to recollect it. I didn't have too high of expectations for the race as I hadn't done too much activity in the last while at all, I was just looking forwards to the cross atmosphere and racing my bike.
Under pitch black skies with just the lights of the Red River Speed way, a few tiki torches and the odd string of Christmas lights, debuted 140 cross racers. All the women started in one category this year, with the B Men. I wasn't too sure how to go about racing, but I did know it was power right from the gun.
I put on my lucky socks, and headed down to the start line. I had a good start, and was in the top two going into the first couple of corners. I knew there were a few people that I was going to try to stay with. I quickly pulled out a decent lead over all the other women, but I couldn't seem to settle into a good rhythm. I knew I didn't have the fitness in my lungs right away. I slowly started to die, but I still held a 10-15 second gap over the next fastest woman, and it wasn't coming down. At this point, with the strong head and cross winds, and just a few riders up head, I knew that I'd die pulling into the winds. As I came through the start finish loop, I could see the second place women about 10 seconds behind in a large group of men. At this point, probably made the worst decision I have ever made in a race, and I slowed down to wait for the group behind me.
The race carried on, and I was barely working, about 150 heart rate. Chilling, and spinning my legs through most of it, drafting, but a terrible choice. I rode Anna's wheel throughout the last 1/3 of the race nice and chill. I wasn't able to come around on the outside of the corner for the finish.
So, now I learned a great lesson from my first cross race- Hammer, hammer, and hammer, and keep attacking and never let someone catch you just to draft.
I am extremely happy with my new Major Jake from Kona! It handles awesome, and I can't wait to train and ride with it more!
It will be a good race next weekend at labarrier park! I actually might have had 4 days of training in by then, and I won't be waiting for anyone next time! (just hope the course isn't too technical!)