I had plans of writing a kick ass blog post all day. That was when I thought I'd be home before 7pm. Unfortunately there was a horrible accident on I-57 and the expressway was shut down. As frustrated as I was at least I was going home safe tonight.
Anyway, Iola has always been a must do race for us. It's the first WORS race of the year. It's a good time even if you only get to see the people you haven't seen since October of the previous year.
The plan was to leave on Saturday per usual. The kids were spending the weekend with John's parents. It was kind of nice to not have to worry about them, and even though I think I won't miss them, I do miss them terribly. I don't realize how much until I see their faces when we get back.
We hit the road around 11am on Saturday. Nothing eventful on the ride up. Unless you want to count me fucking around with the FM transmitter for the iPod. New toy ya know.
About 4 hours later we were in the Iola Winter Sports parking lot. Right away we saw a handful of friends we hadn't seen since last year. It's such a good feeling.
We registered, chatted and eventually suited up for the pre-ride. More talking, especially about how we'll all suck come Sunday, and then actual ride.
The course has been the same for the most part for as many years as I can remember. This doesn't bother me. I enjoy the familiarity for the first race.
Tons of climbing to start and the last half of the course pine-filled twisty singletrack. Fucking awesome.
I rode two laps with Amelia and one with both Amelia and Christine. I dreaded race day climbing those hills at race pace. Ouch.
After pre-riding we took our cold selves to the hotel to clean up so we could grab some food. We ended up at a Mexican restaurant a stone's throw away from the hotel. John ended up having to wear my jeans since I didn't pack him any. Yes, he looked way better in them than I do. Not to mention way sexy (more so than usual).
After dinner we headed back to get some rest. The 4th Harry Potter movie was on (hell yeah), so we watched that until we all fell asleep shortly after 9pm.
I woke up around 5:20am ready to go. Unfortunately race time isn't til 11:30. So I went back to sleep only to wake up a bit after 7am way over rested. Need coffee.
Breakfast was good and coffee, um, powerful. I don't know if it was from not having coffee in awhile, but man, I was wired.
This is way long already isn't it?
At the event Jeremey had a spot saved for us (as usual), thanks dude! We pulled in, caught up with some friends (made fun of them really) and I started getting ready.
Warmed up and rode up to the line. Some familiar faces and some new.
I ended up sort of in the back to start being the non-aggressive person I am.
Before I knew it Don was saying Gooo and we were off. At first it seemed easy. I passed a bunch of people and then we hit the sand pit and my heart exploded. I think people passed me. I have no idea what position I was in. We hit the downhill into the bowl and I passed a couple people there and then, OMG... HILLS! Oh man did they hurt. I don't know what spot I was in, who I was with or anything. I just remember after hitting that back climb thinking now relax and try to recover a bit.
Ouch. I forgot how much this racing thing hurt.
Next thing I remember is trying to open my clif shot (which I did) and heading up the climbs. People cheering all over the course. It was great. And then I remember Barb and McKenzie, of course someone I knew. I was gross. I had snot all over and was drooling on that steeper climb coming out of the bowl.
This one:

Except I think that pic was my 3rd lap. I was out of drool.
I remember getting someone's handlbar into my hip after the downhill into the climb, I kept my momentum, she didn't and bam.
Last lap in one of the switchbacks in the singletrack I had a tree like fall onto/into me. I had to stop and help the dude who knocked it over get it off the trail. Weird.
I ended up 6th overall and 2nd age. Good times.
After I cleaned up I went to the bowl to watch John and others. So many people to cheer for!

I fucking love this shit. Can you tell?

*photos by mountaingoat and singletrackslowpoke

The only thing I don't like about these weekends is the long drive home. At least we had some killer recovery food.

Who is going to Rhinelander? I am so in, maybe.


Christine said...

Nice racing Rachael! You were looking strong on the pre-ride.

Tom K said...

nice job.

Rhinelander is almost Canada.

amelia said...

that's such a cute pic of you and john. great job out there! i knew you'd kill it when you were beating me up the climbs on pre-ride.

ZMoney said...

Nice job! Did John wear your underwear too?

Claire said...

Ha! Matt looks better in my jeans too! Skinny punk. ^_^ You looked strong out there!

Sara said...

Please tell me you got a picture of John in your jeans???

joeyTWOwheels said...

Sweet report. It's addictive (said the guy who needs to race again).

Love the shot of you and John. Good looking couple.

Noel said...

Good to read your blogs about riding. Good stuff man, good stuff.

spicyride said...

Thanks everyone. Hopefully I will update this blog more often now that the season has started.

rusty wrycza said...

Somebody sent my shot of John to Twin Six - its the main photo on their homepage...
cool - John's now FAMOUS

sue said...


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