OK bike racers, imagine this: about 2 weeks into summer you sustain a season ending injury and while all your bro's are out there givin it every weekend you are in serious rehab mode. This of course comes on the heels of another injury...about 5 months of rehab in the previous year.
So with a healthy mix of anticipation and trepidation I'm heading to Moab tomorrow morning. Racing for 24 hours solo, of course. With nary a race in 3 months, I'm hungry. Very hungry. With the fresh memories of being laid up in my mind, coming back whole from these things isn't something I take for granted anymore. With a foot at maybe 75% the plan has required a bit of massaging.
How it will play out is anybodies guess. Fox will surely be turning some fast night laps if he can keep his skinny tires out of the sand and inflated. The Coed-Pro Am field is bigger than I've ever seen with some fast teams in the mix. Sager's brainchild MonaVie looks super tough - if they can keep their 20 lb bikes running (and with Bart's experience in Moab they will) it could be a runaway. That will be fun so watch! The Jack Mormon Militia is back. The overall is going to be a stretch given the Pro-am field, but ya never know. They sure rocked it last year.
The solo men's field is huge - over 60 riders last time I checked. What's interesting so far is who isn't registered. Nat Ross and Josh Tostado aren't in yet, but I'm sure they will be there - has Nat ever missed this race? In '05 the conditions were good and I was able to get in 17 laps - more I think than had ever been done previously by a solo rider - but 2 other gents went faster with Anthony Colby doing an astounding 18 laps in his first solo 24. Word on the street is the course is slow...so maybe nobody will be doing 18 this year. I don't generally set a lap count as a goal - that isn't how races are scored in the end. I'll dig as deep as I can/have to in order to achieve my goals tho. What are my goals? Well, it is a bike race now isn't it? OK, one goal is to be able to ride the White rim 2 weeks post race and not spend this fall rehabing race injuries, there is some serious socializing on the horizon ;)
Of course solo is a misnomer for this endeavor. I'll have a team helping the cause. Lynda is the mastermind in the pit. If you've ridden with us you know the mojo advantage that will bring. I'll be debuting the Siren Song, a svelt 26/29 softail. The bike's godfather Brendan will be there to keep it running smoothly. The other bike is a Leviathon 29er with that new top secret shock courtesy of MC (thanks Mike). Desert Cyclery has helped to dial in all the mech bits and pieces to keep the show going.
The 29er theme is no accident - though I've done a good bit of power testing and in most situations find my 26ers faster, that doesn't hold true on the Moab course. There will be 29" wheels (at least one) under each podium rider this year - or I'll eat a whole apple pie!
Speaking of pie...this is a social circus. I'll be somewhere in solo row with a big bbq grill. Come on over Fri afternoon/eve, bring something for the grill and we'll catch up and relieve the tension building in advance of what we're about to put ourselves through.