Sunday, March 30, 2008

Volvo Challenge

Well challenge was a perfect description of this hlf centuary race. I can't say that I didn't have a good race but the race basically ended before it started. The reason you may ask, well its a fifty fifty between arriving slightly late and race organization confusing us with cattle. We arrived about an hour before the start then got our things ready before heading to the start line, only to find that they had squeezed about hundred and fifty people in a lane as wide as a car. Needless to say becasue we didn't decide to camp there on the line from the previous evening we started from the back of the pack. As much as I wanted to push to the front I thought there will probably be enough space to get to the front after the gun went off. WRONG!!!! We only got to the line three minutes after the gun had gone off then proceeded to be held up becasue after 500m or so they decided it would be enough and stuck in a nice little hill. So we were jammed in and forced off the bike. I grabbed my bike and started running with Ofir, my partner for the race. We made up quite a few places doing this but still were took quite a bit of energy to get to the front. After 8km, by this time it felt like 20, we had made headway and were working at a good pace. We worked well together and kept up our initial efforts. My legs were already starting to make themselves known but I wanted to make up some time and we pushed on as close to the line as possible. The trail was brilliant and after the bad start things started to look up. Really fast single track took us down after some meaty climbs. On some of the descents I was flying and feeling really good and everytime felt we were making up time. Every hill we got to we would pass another group of people so I knew we were going along well. By the end of the second and final lap though every litle effort resulted in legs threatening to cramp so had to balance between pushing as hard as possible without going over the edge. Rather difficult balancing act as some of the hills were long. Granny gear to the rescue!!! The last section of the loop is a technical fast descent and I found myself lashing the course for all it was worth. Got to the end with Ofir completely exhausted and on the egdeof cramping but happy to have finished. Had a great partner and enjoyed the race but didn't stick around becasue I personally still had a bad taste in my mouth from the start. Live and learn. Next year we will need to bring the tent along;)
Looked this morning at the results and saw we finished 14th overall with a time of 2:55:15.85, can't say this makes me much happier as the winning time was 2:35:12.10. We'll never know so rather take the lesson and come back stronger next year. Can't download teh picture but you can se us finishing over here.
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